Michael Osaghae, MCAS '20, and Tiffany Brooks, MCAS '21, were elected by the student body to be President and Executive Vice President of the Undergraduate Government of Boston College (UGBC) during the 2019-2020 school year on Thursday. The elected pair ran against candidates Taylor Jackson and Alejandro Perez, both MCAS '21.
The referendum ballot question "Should Boston College withhold investments from the fossil fuel industry?" was also passed with more than 80 percent of students voting "yes." According to the Elections Committee, 2,005 students responded "yes" to the divestment question, while 374 students against fossil fuel divestment.
Osaghae, currently head of the AHANA+ Leadership Council, and Brooks, the senator representing Music, Arts, and Performance organizations in the Student Leadership Council, organized their platform around the goals of being "intentional, intersectional, and innovative."
Their extensive platform includes policy goals such as placing an elected student representative on the Board of Trustees, forming a faculty senate, and creating a collective “Your UGBC Fund” accessible to any member of the student body to hold advocacy events on campus.
In a statement to The Gavel, Osaghae said that he and Brooks are "honored and excited" to have been elected.
"Both teams agreed that BC should be a place where everyone feels welcomed and we look forward to amplifying the voices of all students, especially those who are increasingly marginalized on campus," continued Osaghae. "We are both aware of the responsibility that comes with these positions, and will embrace the challenge that lies ahead."
The referendum, which was sponsored by Climate Justice at Boston College and UGBC senator Kate Canavan, MCAS '21, calls for the university to completely divest from fossil fuel industry within the next five years. Climate Justice cites Catholic social teaching that calling for ethical investment and care for the planet, in addition to environmental concerns and the falling value of fossil fuel investments as renewable energy becomes less costly, as reasons to divest from the fossil fuel industry.