Last November 23, a new Legislative Assembly (LA) representative for the DLSU Manila-Laguna Campus was appointed by the present members of the LA to work alongside incumbent Laguna Campus LA representative Geo Olaivar (III, BS-ENTS).
JJ Trinidad (IV, CS-ST) will serve for the remaining two terms of the academic year, subsequently filling in the vacancy brought about by the unprecedented transfer of then-elected Ella Barrioquinto. She originally won the position alongside Olaivar during the 2017 General Elections.
The appointment process
In accordance with Section 1, Article 24 of the University Student Government (USG) Constitution, the LA was given the responsibility to fill in the vacant position accordingly. Aspirants had to undergo a rigorous application process which culminated in the presentation of their platforms during the emergency LA session held last Thursday.
Following the presentation of their platforms, Trinidad and fellow candidate Clark Amigable (III, BS-IE) were questioned on the feasibility of their plans and their knowledge of LA procedures and responsibilities. Additionally, Olaivar and Laguna Campus President Daryll Overos also gave their insights on the candidates’ platforms before the LA representatives cast their vote.
Given that his appointment is effective immediately, Trinidad will be resigning from his current role as Chief-of-Staff of the Office of the Campus President to focus on his duties as an LA representative.
For a continually growing Laguna Campus
Trinidad’s platform focused mainly on internal campus governance, academic representation, and organizational concerns.
He proposed the possibility of granting voting powers to the Laguna Campus President when campus-specific concerns are raised within the USG. When asked about the necessity of the voting powers, Trinidad explained that he was thinking of the Laguna Campus’ future and its capacity to match the growth expected by the University in coming years. Though the student population in the Laguna-based campus is significantly lower in comparison to its counterpart in Manila, their voices—as coursed through the Campus President—should be heard.
In regard to academic representation, Trinidad plans to add an Academic Council to the existing four peer committees within the Laguna Campus Government. This council will be responsible for addressing academic concerns such as limited course offerings, cross-enrollment issues, and other academic concerns. They will also be tasked with preparations for A.Y. 2018-2019, as three new colleges and 17 new degree programs are expected to be introduced in the Laguna Campus.
Trinidad also included the integration of Manila and Laguna student organizations as an issue he hopes to address during his time in the LA. He suggested the establishment of a system wherein organizations that wish to establish a unit in Laguna are given better support, citing the La Salle Computer Society as a prime example of successful integration between the two campuses.