O’Day named student body president

By Paul Biasco

Jaclyn O’Day started off her freshman year at the University as a staffer for the student body president. It would seem her career on the Illinois Student Senate has come full-circle with her election Thursday as the University’s new student body president.

“I have been trying to be very positive in my campaign,” O’Day said, junior in LAS.

After the initial vote, neither O’Day nor her opponents, Frank Calabrese, junior in LAS and Zenobia Ravji, graduate student in LAS, had received the required majority of the votes. The field was then narrowed down to O’Day and Ravji. In the final vote, O’Day received 30 votes to Ravji’s 16.

“I developed an intense knowledge of what the student senate is all about,” O’Day said while referencing her career in the senate.

Ryan Ruzic, past student body president, said he was “absolutely happy” with the results of the election.

Get The Daily Illini in your inbox!

  • Catch the latest on University of Illinois news, sports, and more. Delivered every weekday.
  • Stay up to date on all things Illini sports. Delivered every Monday.
Thank you for subscribing!

“I have known Jaclyn since she was a freshman,” Ruzic said. “Even as a freshman, I knew she could one day be president.”

In O’Day’s speech to the student senate, she stated one of her main concerns as being a separation of the student body and the rest of the campus.

“I want the senate to reach out to the (Registered Student Organizations) on campus as well as cultural groups,” O’Day said.

O’Day also wants to increase lobbying efforts to obtain state funding for the University. She is working with the Illinois Student Government Association to create a joint effort between public universities in Illinois to push for state funding. She has already arranged a conference call on Monday between the schools.

“I think she has a real compassion for the students,” Ruzic said. “She has real experience.”

In other races, Rohit Dhake, junior in Business, was elected vice president internal. Vikram Chaudhery, junior in Engineering, was elected vice president external. Bradley Tran, freshman in Engineering, was elected treasurer.

“I will be the voice of our student representatives,” O’Day said. “I genuinely want to work with our senators to make sure they have the resources they need.”