Editor's note, Feb. 19, 2020: While Jack Hill was employed by The Daily Barometer at the time of print, he had not been an active staff member or produced content. He is no longer employed by The Daily Barometer.
Associated Students of Oregon State University Presidential Candidate Jack Hill and Vice Presidential Candidate Gretchen Fujimura are running with the slogan, ‘CIA: Connect, Inspire and Acknowledge’. Hill and Fujimura said they hope to use modern social media platforms and student outreach to make student government more approachable to the average student at Oregon State University.
Hill and Fujimura both attended Westview High School in Portland, Ore., and said they have been friends for five years.
While in high school, Hill founded a middle school speech and debate program, which he said has given him leadership experience that he hopes to use in office.
“I started a nonprofit when I was in high school, it’s actually the only middle school speech and debate league in all of Oregon, because I was like, ‘gotta have leadership and teach kids how to speak,’” Hill said. “I founded the organization which throws tournaments and workshops in the summer and in the school year, and we give scholarships to students as far reaching as Eugene and Coos Bay [Ore.] to come and compete.”
Fujimura currently works as a shift manager at Starbucks, which she says has given her real-world experience in conflict resolution in and working with people older than herself.
One of Hill and Fujimura’s main goals is to bring the Associated Students of OSU up to date with modern social media trends in platforms like Tiktok and Snapchat, in order to better relate to the current student body.
“You’ll hear the other candidates talk about accountability and transparency, and we think a lot of that is being done by the traditional means, but we think student government needs to be more open about employing new media formats. By that I mean Instagram, Snapchat, Tiktok and maybe even Youtube. We already have these accounts, but at this point they seem like these big official accounts that seem very bureaucratic and people can’t relate to them,” Hill said. “We want to foster a community of social media influencers and content producers that are picked out straight from the student body, and we want to nurture their relationship with the student body at large, so we can deliver content that people want to hear and is actually helpful.”
Hill also said he hopes to partner with Orange Media Network to plan a social media education event informally known as the “Tinder Workshop,” to teach students how to better market themselves online on websites like Instagram, LinkedIn, Facebook and online dating services.
Through their proposed social media initiatives, Fujimura said Hill hopes to “bring clout” to ASOSU.
Hill said he is hoping to lobby the Oregon State University Foundation to provide better mental health resources on campus and to decrease waiting times, as well as provide more resources for students who struggle to meet needs like transportation, or who face food or housing insecurity.
Hill and Fujimura both said they feel being the only freshmen running for office sets them apart from their third and fourth-year competitors, as they have more time to devote to student government before they begin internships and upper-division coursework.
“As freshmen, we have a greater stake in the benefit and wealth of the school community here, because we’re going to be here for the next three to four years. We have the time to go out and build the community that we want, whereas the other presidential candidates, dare I say, wouldn’t need to care as much,” Hill said.
Hill and Fujimura also both stressed their willingness to learn from those with more ASOSU experience if they are elected.
“For all that we might be inexperienced, we’ll rely on our network of existing ASOSU Senators and previous cabinet members, to help us fill the gap in experience. Like, Dylan Perfect could be a government relations person again,” Hill said.
Fujimura encourages students who are interested in contacting them to direct message them on Instagram at the handle: @fujimura_hill.