Whatley, Brill discuss plans
President-elect, vice president-elect take office in early May
Published: Monday, April 16, 2012
Updated: Monday, April 16, 2012 12:04
Student Body President-elect Cortez Whatley and Vice President-elect Rachel Brill will take office in early May. Until then, Whatley and current Student Body President Matthew McCann will work together to create a smooth transition. The Central Florida Future talked with Whatley and Brill about their plans for when they take office and what students can expect from their new student body executives.
Central Florida Future: Now that elections are over and you are ready to take office, what is the next plan of action?
Whatley: To transition properly so that I’m able to come into office and be able to work efficiently with all the people I’ll have to work with. To know all the different people and departments, and what role everyone plays in everything.
Brill: We are first selecting our cabinet, so we have our applications out. And once we get that team of individuals, we are going to go forth and make a plan for each of our platform goals and make sure we accomplish everything.
CFF: How did you feel about the charges of election violations levied against you for how you ran your campaign? (All charges were later dropped, after the election commission ruled in the hearings.)
Whatley: Honestly, we weren’t too worried about the violations because we knew how we ran our campaign. I still had to focus on them and take each of them seriously, so I wasn’t able to think about my cabinet, how to get our applications out or the transition. Not any of that until afterwards, after they were all cleared. So I just felt distracted, if anything. I felt like I could have been putting my time toward something else.
Brill: Cortez and I weren’t in violation of anything. It was definitely just a way to try and, I don’t know, try to overshadow the great accomplishment we just had.
CFF: Cortez, why did you choose Rachel as your vice president?
Whatley: I formerly had a working relationship with her. We served on Senate together so I knew what she was like as far as her debating abilities and how professional she was. And then from talking to different members of her staff at Volunteer UCF, I got a feel for how successful that agency has been under her leadership. So that is something I definitely looked to because, as vice president, you’re the person who authority and is going to be handling our cabinet.
CFF: What are your plans for the summer, and should students expect any changes for when they return in the fall?
Whatley: Summer is a lot of planning. That’s when, hopefully, we’ll have picked our entire cabinet. Students can expect to come back to an administration that is ready to go and very fired up about completing our platforms, and hopefully be heavily tradition-based. You know, coming back and getting ready for the first couple of football games with the tailgating and things [like that.] So it should be very fun.
CFF: What are your immediate plans regarding the Graduate Student Assembly, and how do you foresee the issue playing out during your term?
Whatley: I don’t think it’s a decision I’ll be making laterally. I think it’s just making sure that at the end of the day, whether it is through GSA or some other means, we are able to address and accommodate the graduate students and what their needs are and help them the best way we can — in the interest of all students, of course.
Brill: We want to make sure we’re making educated moves so that it’s something that will be able to withstand our university’s history, not just something that has temporary effects. I think that’s where the issue lies. I think we’re all about making the right decisions that will last, and not just be something that dwindles.
CFF: The 24-hour fitness center was a major part of your platform. When will you begin working on that and when can students expect to see the results?
Whatley: The expansion should be started, if not late summer, early fall. We are hoping to see the facility ready to be used by students in late fall, early spring at the latest.
CFF: What other campus improvements do you plan to bring to UCF?
Whatley: We are going to be looking into partnering with [Orlando International Airport] in the creation of our shuttle system that transports students between the university and the airport. Also, we’re definitely looking at the improvement of Wi-Fi on campus.
Brill: Well our platform gives a pretty good list of them, but overall, it’s pretty much just making sure that nothing is going to waste in terms of what we have — and we have a lot of great resources that students just don’t know about. … That is something that we hope to improve.