Matt Panconi emerges as student assembly president for 2015 to 2016 school year
Matt Panconi was elected president of the Rutgers University Student Assembly (RUSA) for the 2015 to 2016 academic year.
Panconi, a Rutgers Business School junior, won with 52 percent of the vote, or 1,304 votes, against opponent Justin Lucero, a School of Arts and Sciences junior.
Brianna Battle, a School of Arts and Sciences junior, was elected vice president. She won 61 percent of the votes, or 1,518 votes, against opponent Luke Svasti, a School of Arts and Science junior. Vishal Patel was elected treasurer. All winners were members of the Rutgers Students United (RSU) ticket.
Lucero, of the Rutgers Alliance ticket, wanted to enhance student services like Counseling and Psychological services and increase co-sponsorships between RUSA and other organizations. In past semesters, he helped pass the preferred-name policy and advocated for cheaper textbooks.
Panconi, a former chair of Student Affairs (2014-2015), said he wants to continue to hold monthly meetings with leaders from a wide range of student organizations in order to openly communicate.
His aim as president is to achieve shared governance, create a connected student body, lower the cost of tuition, increase public safety and unite different organizations on campus.
RUSA has goals to decrease tuition by increasing state funding. They also plan to engage with the student body more, Brianna Battle, vice president of RUSA, said.
Panconi and Battle are focusing on incorporating students into decision making by actively engaging them to receive their input and making RUSA more accessible to the student body.