VP duo terms end early

By Samantha Jones Toal

Sarah Hochman and Matt Hill resigned from their positions as Illinois Student Senate vice presidents internal and external, respectively, on Nov. 8RB. Their resignations were effective Dec. 9, the last day of the fall semesterRB.

The pair resigned after nearly one and a half years as vice presidents in a joint letter to student body president Mitch DickeyRB. In a previous interview with The Daily Illini, Hill said that the joint letter was simply convenience and not indicative of the cause of Hochman’s and his resignations.

In the letter, they wrote they needed to step down due to “unforeseen circumstances and opportunities.” Hochman and Hill denied explaining the circumstances or opportunities, but both confirmed they will not be on campus for the spring semester.

Dickey said the spring semester will be interesting without Hill and Hochman, but he is looking forward to working with a new executive coreRB.

Many of the core functions of the student senate are well-established practices, Dickey said, and he is trying to find people qualified to carry those out. However, he does not anticipate any projects falling through because of the change in leadership.

“I was a little bit surprised — although not to the greatest extent, we were really good friends,” Dickey said. “Sometimes unforeseen opportunities arise and I wish them the best.”

Two weeks later, the student senate elected Laura Saldivar, senior in LASRB and Jill Whitman, sophomore in LAS to replace Hill and HochmanRB.

Hill and Hochman said they’re confident the transition will go smoothly because Saldivar and Whitman are already familiar with their new positions.

The pair both said they’ve learned a lot during their time in the senate but it did not come without challenges.

“We’ve both learned so much about how the University works, which has been cool but also challenging,” Hill said. “Whether you’re trying to buy poster board or lead a huge campaign, there’s many different hurdles you have to overcome.”

When asked about these opportunities, Hill said Hochman and he are still finalizing their plans for next semester.

Whatever opportunities await them next semester, their dream jobs serve as a reflection of their work in the student senate.

“I view myself as a connector,” said Hill.

Hill said one of his passions as vice president was connecting students on campus to the student senate’s work and campaigns.

Hochman spoke about her interest in policy — specifically those that could impact a vast majority of people.

“The biggest thing for internal (vice president) is to help things run and anticipate needs,” Hochman said. “Before student senate, I knew what hard work was — but really being able to make a difference in others’ lives besides my own — I think that’s really prepared me for any future opportunity.”

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