Vita, Thomas possess vital experience, display commitment to student body

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COURTESY PHOTO // KAYLA PAYNE

The reason I am supporting Kelsey Vita and Ellie Thomas in this election is simply that they have been supporting me throughout their time in Student Assembly.

Flashing back to freshman year, I remember Kelsey running for class president. Her campaign and platform won me over because of the high probability of seeing change occur with her placement in SA. After she won, she hosted office hours for students in her social class to come and get to know her. Since then, I have had the opportunity to get to understand her as a leader and a friend. Kelsey’s energy shows her care and love for not only the school, but how the students want to see it change for the better during their time here. When I met Ellie the first time, I felt that exact same energy. The passion Ellie and Kelsey possess to make the school better through the feedback of the students shows that they are ready and willing to do the work it takes to make a change.

The initiatives that these two have sponsored and helped cultivate have accumulated into a long list that reaches so many different students across campus and really takes their interests into account.  For example, Kelsey is the founder of and main sponsor on SA’s FAQ Week, which is currently SA’s biggest outreach initiative. She also was a main sponsor along Sen. Anthony Joseph ’21 on the Higher Standard Resolution, which denounced the use of blackface and called for the creation of a SA Committee on Race Relations, which is charged with working on issues related to greater hiring of faculty of color as well as renaming buildings on campus which are currently named after racist and Confederate figures. Kelsey is also the main Senate sponsor on Transgender Awareness Week and has been for the past three years, while also serving as the main sponsor on the Out of Darkness Walk for suicide prevention this year. The crazy thing is that the list goes on, and these are just the things Kelsey has already been able to accomplish.

Ellie has also worked hard to be an advocate for students. She was Chair of the Public Affairs Committee, in which she helped start a relationship with Police Chief Deb Cheesebro to advocate bringing more lighting on campus for campus safety. Also, Ellie was the primary sponsor for Interfaith Harmony Week for the past two years, which helped to promote empathy and compassion for others on campus. Lastly, Ellie and Kelsey worked vigilantly on the Period Project with members of SA, HOPE and VOX to install dispensers for free pads and tampons in high-traffic, gender neutral bathrooms across campus.

Together, these two have accomplished so much, and I believe they are ready to keep fighting for all the students they represent. In making the team and building the platform together, these two made sure that the voices across campus were heard and represented. Whether working on Title IX reform, garnering support for increased mental healthcare access, or making sure diversity and inclusion reach into all aspects of campus, these two women have the fiery spirits to make a difference on this campus. All in all, this shows that not only have they been successful in the past with their positions in SA, but that they have the platform that encompasses the needs of the students and have the stamina and endurance to see these plans executed as SA president and vice president.

Email Jeremy Simmons at

jasimmons@email.wm.edu.