‘An excellent leader’: Student Advocacy candidate Jordan Ullman runs for ASUC Senate

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Before he even stepped foot on UC Berkeley’s campus, Jordan Ullman knew he wanted to be involved in the ASUC.

Ullman, a campus sophomore and legal studies major with minors in Jewish studies and public policy, is running for ASUC Senate with the Student Action party on platforms of interfaith relations, basic needs and pre-graduate resources.

“As a queer Jew who is low income, I think that it’s important to be intentional about the kind of changes you want to affect in the ASUC,” Ullman said. “At the end of the day, intention is one thing, but experience is invaluable.”

From the beginning of his freshman year, Ullman gained experience working as a health, wellness and basic needs associate for the Office of ASUC Senator Naomi Garcia, a campus climate intern in the office of then-senator Chaka Tellem and most recently as the chief of staff for Senator Jason Dones.

Ullman is an Educational Opportunity Program scholar, Regents’ and Chancellor’s scholar and Jewish learning fellow at Berkeley Hillel; he also facilitates the Policy Review @ Berkeley Decal.

Ullman emphasized his ability to represent the identities he holds while making space for those he does not. He plans to create an interfaith relations committee within the ASUC to create a space for all religions.

“I don’t want to run a campaign that’s co-opting the effort of other student leaders,” Ullman said. “There are so many organizations on campus that are doing the work that everyone is running on, and I hope it’s reflected in my platforms that I’ve done the research to know those groups.”

Ullman hopes to utilize his research into Path to Care’s trauma-informed town halls by creating similar spaces for all faiths to report violent acts and advocate for each other.

Another goal Ullman is advocating for is basic needs, such as housing and food security, for the community. This includes meeting with Counseling and Psychological Services, hosting community healing circles and hearing what the students really want, he noted.

“I want to be able to, on day one, fill the gap between administration that has been created for the student body,” Ullman said. “I want to be able to say, ‘The ASUC has a limited jurisdiction, but here’s what we can do in the meantime.’ ”

Ullman also plans to increase institutional support for pre-graduate opportunities, especially for first-generation low-income students. A member of the pre-law fraternity Phi Alpha Delta, Ullman recognizes the diverse networking opportunities such as mentorships that more students should know about.

According to Ullman, he has received several endorsements including from Pi Alpha Delta, members of the campus Jewish Fraternity Alpha Epsilon Pi and ASUC Senator Sophie Morris.

“I truly believe that Jordan has the experiences necessary to make an excellent leader, not only in the Jewish community, but also for the campus as a whole,” Morris said in an email.

Contact Dina Katgara at [email protected], and follow her on Twitter at @dinakatgara.