UC Berkeley sophomore Ashley Nelson announced her candidacy Thursday to be an independent senator for the ASUC.
Nelson said she was inspired to run for senate by her experience on the ASUC Financial Wellness Commission.
“I love the whole environment and the fact we can actually make a difference,” Nelson said of the ASUC. “I had two friends last year that ran for senate and won. I saw them work really hard and make changes; now I want to do the same thing.”
A sustainable environmental design major, Nelson will focus on issues related to financial wellness and sustainability in her platform. In particular, she seeks to make students aware of relevant support services on campus.
“I want to make sure students know that there are organizations and other resources on campus available to students based on financial wellness, literacy and sustainability,” Nelson said.
Nelson said she wants to host two fairs focused on financial and sustainability issues to inform students about financial literacy training, scholarships and other forms of available aid. She added that she hopes to talk to stores on campus about promoting sustainability, and to push for affordable housing for students.
Nelson’s campaign manager and roommate, campus junior Tania Barajas, said she agreed to become Nelson’s campaign manager because she supports Nelson on finance and sustainability issues and because she believes in Nelson’s character.
“Living with her, you really get to see the type of person she is,” Barajas said. “She is genuinely a good person that wants to help other people.”
Nelson said she decided to run as an independent candidate so she would not have to compromise her beliefs for a party.
“I think it’s a strong statement to run as an independent,” Nelson said. “I can stand for what I want to, rather than having to go with the party.”