Yang Elected StuCo President in a Runoff
The 2021 Student Council (StuCo) Presidential Election concluded on April 13, when Albert Yang ’22 won in a runoff election against Chris Ruano ’22.
Yang and Ruano received the most votes of the six candidates in the initial election, but neither received enough votes to gain the majority. The candidates from the Class of 2022 were Pearl Miller, Sofia Karatzas, Cyrus Kenkare, Owen Lamothe, Ruano, and Yang. They each delivered Assembly speeches via Zoom on topics ranging from the return to normalcy following the Covid-19 pandemic, to the Connecticut Food Bank Fundraiser (CFBF).
All but one of the candidates (Karatzas) held elected office before their presidential campaign; Yang, Kenkare, and Lamothe each served as Class President for one year, and Miller and Ruano both currently serve as Class Representatives.
“I see next year as a pivotal year,” said Kenkare in his speech. “Although I am proud of the way Hopkins has responded [to the pandemic], next year is critical to make sure we keep the momentum in the right direction.” Some candidates marked a return to normalcy and tradition as a goal of their potential presidency, such as Miller, who said, “The first thing I want to do is bring our school back to some [level] of normalcy. I think being able to continue past traditions is very important.” Others ran on a promise to improve upon those traditions, such as Lamothe, who aimed to “expand our favorite traditions and rethink things like the CFBF in order to make them as successful and fun as possible.”
Karatzas doubled down on her goal to restore pre-pandemic Hopkins traditions, saying that, if elected, she planned on “doubling all fun events and traditions at Hopkins next year” to make up for lost time during quarantine. She cited Jack Luben Grilled Cheese day and Rent-A-Senior Day, among others, as eligible events. Conversely, Yang put forth ideas for new events, such as “Hop Night Live,” which he described as “a Saturday night dedicated to showcasing all the talents in our community.”
All of the candidates conveyed their love of Hopkins. Ruano said he “was just astounded by how kind and welcoming everyone was” when he arrived at Hopkins in the eighth grade. Lamothe also expressed appreciation for those who were StuCo President before, saying he was “inspired by past presidents on StuCo... namely Ella Zuse [’21] and Katherine Takoudes [’20].”
Another popular campaign strategy was assuring the student body that they would direct input. “I will work tirelessly to hear everyone’s individual ideas and strive to make them all possible,” said Karatzas. Kenkare reminded the community that “Student Council meetings are open to the entire school” and promised, “as president, I will make sure that you all feel comfortable sharing your ideas.” Yang said, “I’m someone you can trust, talk with at any time and I’m here for every single student...and faculty member.”
Ultimately, each candidate promised to improve student life. “I hate the idea that someone may feel left out or alone,” said Miller. Ruano summarized his campaign when he said, “I want to make our school a better community and a better place for everyone.”