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The Greyhound

The Greyhound

The Student News Site of Loyola University Maryland

The Greyhound

Get to know Student Body President candidates: Gretchen McCaffrey


The spring 2018 Student Government Association elections are nearly upon us. Campaigning for Executive Elections opens this week, and voting is set for Feb 21 through Feb 23. The Executive Presidents Ticket, often called “the Big Three Ticket”, includes this year’s candidates for Student Body President, VP of Policy and Advocacy, and VP of Social Affairs.

These offices are currently held by Student Body President Francesca Galbato ’18, VP of Policy and Advocacy Mark Cristaldi ’18, and VP of Social Affairs Calla Kostelnik ’18.

“It is wonderful to see so many people passionate not only about SGA, but Loyola as a whole. The role of Student Body President is a huge undertaking, but it is a great opportunity to be a part of something larger than yourself,” says current President Francesca Galbato.

“My advice to the future SBP is to always make yourself available and don’t be afraid to speak up about what you believe is best for students.”

With the incumbents graduating, all three offices are open to completely new candidates, and three different tickets have been registered to fill the positions. “This will be one of the most contested and campaigned SGA elections since I arrived as a freshman,” Senior Class President Nicholas Palazzolo, ’18, said.

The Greyhound interviewed Gretchen McCaffrey, candidate for Student Body President, in an effort to get to know her, hear her platform, and give them her opportunity to show what makes her ticket the best fit for SGA Executive Leadership.

Gretchen McCaffrey, ‘19

“Building Bridges”

Where are you from and what’s your major?

Gretchen McCaffrey

Gretchen McCaffrey: I’m from Lockport, NY. I’m an International Business major, and Chinese Minor.

What does being a Greyhound mean to you?

GM: It’s this passion about being at Loyola but also in our greater Baltimore community, and what role we play. Because we’re such a small campus, and there are so many student leaders and so many organizations on campus, we’re not just focused on our little campus but also constantly expanding ourselves into the greater Baltimore community. And I think that’s so amazing because it’s easy to get so “stuck here” and get lost with just going to class and going back to your room but I think our students are so involved and passionate about making these changes and bettering our community. It’s so awesome to see students channel that passion into something that’s productive.

What’s your leadership experience?

GM: I was a First Year Assembly Member, Sophomore Class President, and now Junior Class President. I’ve really been in [SGA} since the beginning. My freshman year there were a few seniors (like Stephanie Maniglia,’16, and Chris Singlemann, ’16) who really took me under their wing and showed me all the potential that our organization has. Last year I spent so much time in our Student Activities Office and it was just spending so much time with these awesome leaders in SGA, picking their brains and hearing there amazing ideas. SBP Francesca Galbato is one of my best friends here, so SGA is where I’ve made the most friends at Loyola so it’s really been my biggest source of happiness the last three years.

What made you decide to run?

GM: There’s a lot of potential for change in our organization, to make sure we’re leaving a bigger impact. Because there are so many students involved, and I want to make sure our students are passionate about student government. One problem at Loyola is that so many students are involved in so many different things, that it’s kind of hard to make an impact in just one of the things they are involved with. It’s great in one way because we are so involved in so many different things, but I am really focused on making sure that the students in student government are really passionate about student government and actually want to dedicate their time. I think I offer a unique perspective in the selection process for assembly members because I’ve sat through that process myself twice before, and you kind of know what to look for in an applicant having sat through that.

What would be your top priority as Student Body President?

GM: Encouraging cross campus collaboration between different organizations on campus, whether it be between students and administration

“We really want to build these bridges between all these different organizations on campus.”

“There are all these it’s so important this year and in the coming years to really establish a good connection between these administrators and students, so we have a good working relationships and they see our students and respect us and our voices.” There are so many things like renovations and policy changes going around on campus and we’ve got to make sure our students have a voice. We’re a college, the student voice should matter.”

One of the jobs of SBP is to sit on Loyola Conference with administrators, we want to highlight how amazing our students are to them.”

How will you best represent all Greyhounds?

GM: By building an inclusive campus but also extending ourselves out. I think the mentality is that a lot of students think we’re kind of “clique-y”, and we do say that people are always welcome to come to us [SGA members] with office hours, or tables outside of boulder where we want to hear students opinions. But something I really want to do is go to as many different club meetings as we’re welcome to come to. We should be going to our events, we should be going to other events, and we should be giving back to our community. We’re student government, we’re supposed to be serving and representing our entire student body. Not asking people to come to us, but going to them.

Can you explain your campaign slogan?

GM: Building Bridges. Instead of asking people to come to us, we will come to you, seeking ideas, initiatives, and concerns. Our passion and dedication to this mission ensures we will bridge disconnect on our campus, whether it be between students, athletes, administration, or student organizations. We intend to build and develop these bridges. Bridges build relationships, bridges build strong communities, bridges build respect, bridges unify.

Final words for potential voters?

GM: I’m just really Passionate about Loyola and making our organization the best it could possibly be. I have the experience with student government, I know how it runs, and I also see a lot of things that need to be changed. And obviously we’re not going to change an entire campus culture in one year, I want to make sure that our goals are achievable, but I’m really excited about the position. I really believe in our ticket, we have the tools, the perspectives, and the experience to achieve the goals we have set and to make a real difference for next year. And I really intend on doing that.


Campaigning for the Executive Elections began Monday, with polls opening this Wednesday and closing on Friday, when the winners are expected to be announced by current SGA leadership.

The Greyhound encourages all students to hear what all of the candidates have to say and most importantly vote.

Student Body President Francesca Galbato leaves the candidates with final words wishing “all the candidates the best of luck! All of them are capable of making an impact on Loyola, no matter their title.”

Be sure to read about this year’s other candidates for Student Body President on The Greyhound.

Lemuel Bourne
Daysi Perez
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Get to know Student Body President candidates: Gretchen McCaffrey