April 16, 2015, 2:35 p.m. – CANDIDATES for the Central
Student Council (CSC) elections faced off Tuesday in “Tagisan 2015,” the
mandatory debate hosted by the UST Central Comelec at the Plaza Mayor.

Lakas ng Diwang Tomasino (Lakasdiwa) bets and independent
candidates were given two minutes to present their platforms and another two
minutes to answer questions asked by a panel composed of JR de los Santos of
the Student Organizations Coordinating Council (SOCC); Arlene Salamat, a
professor from the UST-AMV College of Accountancy; Pauline de la Peña and
Jonathan Austria of the Thomasian Debaters’ Council; and Varsitarian Editor in Chief Ralph Hernandez.

Presidential candidates Anna Mariz Mangalili and
Rosvielentine Rosales  shared the same
thoughts on the role of the CSC in answering the question posed by de la Peña:
“Why is there a need for a student council [and what] difference does it make
if at the end of the day, we will remain bound by the administration’s rule?”

“Hindi naman kayang pakinggan ng administration lahat ng
sinasabi ng Thomasians. We are here to organize lahat ng sinasabi ng estudyante
and para ma-represent natin sila sa administration,” said Mangalili.

Rosales said: “Ang student council po ang nagiging mediator
para i-voice out ng students ang concerns nila [sa] administration.”

Incumbent CSC officers Rosales (secretary) and Patricia
Alexis Canoza (auditor) were also given the opportunity to brag about one
project they had led.

Rosales spearheaded Lingkod Tomasino, an outreach project
for a partner community, but it is still in the approval stage. Canoza
spearheaded Thomasian Project 4, wherein graduating high school students who
were financially incapable were given a chance by the CSC to be a scholar of
the university.

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Hernandez asked the last question from the panel and
addressed it to the presidential bets: “If you win and a candidate with
the same platform as yours [also] wins, will you give way? What will be your
alternative platform?”

Mangalili said she would give way and support the platform
instead because the same goal would still be reached.

Rosales said she would compromise. “Nandoon ka hindi para
i-gratify ang sarili mo pero nandoon ka para i-uplift yung CSC.”

The candidates also presented their general plans for the
next administration.

The campaign period for the CSC elections ended last
Wednesday, while the winners will be proclaimed on April 17, Friday, the last
day of elections.

According to the UST Student Election Code of 2011, a
college or faculty must have at least a 25-percent voter turnout, otherwise a
failure of election will be declared. Last year, voter turnout stood at 64.21
percent. Angeli Mae S. Cantillana and Mary Gillan Frances G. Ropero

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