The Student News Site of Taipei American School




Elected: Meet your new StuGov squad


The annual student government election results were released as of March 16, and the selected officers are as follows: Natalie Chang (9), Nicole Chang (11), Daniel Wang (11), Andy Xu (9), and Kevin Yu (11). The StuGov has an election policy that requires at least two underclassmen to be selected each year, regardless of their vote count. This was because StuGov believes that continuation of leadership is important for its organization to thrive in the future. However, it is unclear whether or not this policy will continue.

According to Dr. Long, Dean of Students and StuGov Sponsor, the ideal officer is not only responsible, mature and reliable, but also should have a good sense of humor. A StuGov officer would have to be organized and take initiative to do work: “I do not micro manage StuGov, I don’t hold their hands to get them to do things.” Although academic performance does not matter, credibility does—voting for someone with a bad reputation amongst the administration and teachers would not be the best choice of representation. Dr. Long says, “[StuGov Officers] can’t be rebels! They are the voice of the students to the administration.” Most importantly, a StuGov officer should “legitimately love the student body, which means they take time to get to know people that aren’t in their friend group.”

On March 14, each prospective officer presented the student body of returning high schoolers with a one minute speech pitching their candidacy. This year’s speeches were brimming with pop culture references in the hope of connecting with the audience—dabbing, rapping and flexing included. However, a couple of speeches were kept simple and on the formal end of the spectrum.

When asked “what’s the best thing about TAS?” the candidates responded with one of  two kinds of answers: the variety of available opportunities, or the diverse, accepting student community. Tingjen Hsieh (9), answered with the latter: “The best thing about TAS is unquestionably the people. The people here are so diverse and so embracing in their own way.” Jonathan Huang (11), Daniel Wang (11), Nicole Chang (11) and Andrew Xu (9), on the other hand, phrased in their own fashion that TAS is best for the array of opportunities that it presents to the students no matter what area they wish to focus in. Kevin Yu (11), more specifically, said that to him, the best thing about TAS is that “people have the freedom to express their ideas and do whatever they want without major scrutiny… and also NOVA.”

Every single candidate for StuGov officer was previously a ClassGov member. Several of them mentioned that they joined StuGov in hopes of creating even bigger change—change that could not be taken if their audience was narrowed down to only their own class. Andrew Xu (9) reasoned that “success is defined as the number of people you help,” so naturally, he wished to be a part of StuGov. Kevin Yu (11) joked that he didn’t want to be “Julian [Lee]’s slave” in ClassGov anymore.

Although each of the candidates may seem very similar on the surface, they do have significant differences. Jonathan Huang (11) is both a rugby player and a dancer—and when asked to choose his preference, he insisted that it was not possible. Natalie Chang (9) has a new interest in film and photography and exclaimed that “anything artsy is cool.” Her favorite movies are those that inflict strong emotions, like Interstellar, The Theory of Everything, Whiplash, or Me, Earl, and the Dying Girl to name a few. Tingjen Hsieh (9), perhaps one of the quirkier candidates, claims she really loves Oreos, so much that if she could travel back in time, she “would go back to 1995, and ask Mr. Porcello [the inventor of Oreos] to rename ‘Double Stuffed Oreos’ ‘Regular Oreos’ and call the Regular Oreos ‘Diet Oreos’.”

A significant amount of the candidates also highlighted their love for learning. Nicole Chang (11) greatly enjoys her AP Psychology class. stating that “I feel like what we learn makes me view behaviors of people in a different way, in the sense that so many things could be impacting those behaviors—things that people don’t even know.” Similarly, Daniel Wang (11) said that his favorite class is IBHL English because they discuss books that have a lot to do with psychology and the class gives him an opportunity to read books he would not have chosen to read before. Andrew Xu (9) says he really likes AP World History—he has a passion for the subject and has fun with the students in his class.

Next year’s StuGov officers are responsible for all sorts of activities, from organizing Frolic to deciding the location of soap dispensers at school. Field day, Spirit Week, ping pong tables in the courtyard: all of these are the works of the Student Government and its leaders. Although the year is coming to an end, the officers have already begun their responsibilities.

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