Belen Yudess ’25
The race for SAS is over and the 2023-24 board has been elected! The results were announced via email on April 7, introducing current Junior Class Co-President Lily Dunkin ’24 as SAS President and current Co-Treasurer Blessing Roland-Magaji ’24 as SAS Executive Vice President (EVP). Among the other newly elected members to the executive board are Melina Durre ’25 as Vice President of Student Affairs (VPSA), Isabella Guizler Bonilla ’26 and Reyna Manriquez ’26 as Co-Treasurers, and Quinn Dwyer ’26 as Secretary.
Dunkin, a politics major with a minor in Foreign Languages (Spanish and French), has been an integral and uplifting part of SAS. Since her election for the 2022-23 academic year, she has helped organize and led several of this year’s successful events such as SAS field day and writing letters to students abroad.
Apart from SAS, Dunkin has led several campus wide initiatives such as reproductive justice protests in spring 2022 and the removal of the “Young Woman” statue, whose artist has Nazi relations, from the Tiernan Field House. Dunkin cited her enthusiasm to empower the SAS team and student body as her primary reason for running.
“I think what’s amazing about the role of SAS president is that you have the power to facilitate different ideas and movements, and that was really exciting for me — to be able to give people a platform to reach out,” Dunkin said. “I also wanted to run because I started to interact more with the administrative side during my second semester of being Junior Class President. I really see the value in being a student-faculty/administrative liaison.”
Looking at her past experiences working with administration, Dunkin believes that the keys to building strong student and faculty relationships are transparency and identifying common goals. “What I’m hoping to see more of is a collaborative mindset when approaching problems as admin and student representatives,” she said.
Although Dunkin has many ideas and beliefs concerning how she wants to proceed with her presidency, she has three core values that are the basis of her platform: community, action, and accountability.
“I want to hold people accountable and have them recognize the power that we have as students on campus, and recognize the power that our leaders have as leaders on campus,” she said. “By acting on that power and by providing a structure where people feel empowered to create community, I think there is a lot of potential for that at Scripps. That will include campus-wide Narcan training, town halls with admins so that everyone can participate in these conversations. I’m also hoping that SCORE is able to mobilize and that the communities that meet there are able to get their needs met. We can talk the talk, but at the end of the day, we need to hold people accountable. We need to act when it’s time to act, and we need to hold people closer as a community.”
Dunkin also highlighted her appreciation for the SAS team and their ability to bring people together in order to learn and row with one another.
“I love SAS — I think that the people who are elected into these roles really care and it’s one of the most diverse groups on campus,” she said. “I don’t just mean by ethnicity or orientation, I mean actually diversity of majors and diversity of thought. Being able to have that group of people meet every single week, you really get the full gambit of student experiences. I’m hoping that in our meetings and going forward next year with events that we’re able to continue to create spaces where people can show up authentically for who they are and know that they’ll be listened to and valued as members of the larger Scripps community and within our little SAS family.”
Reflecting on her time in SAS, Dunkin is grateful for all the students who have participated and embraced the many SAS events this year, naming the Harry Potter Study Hall and Motley movie nights as some of her favorite memories. She also noted that the student body’s ability to foster positive and welcoming environments has been what makes each event special.
“Any event where students feel like they can show up to the event alone and meet somebody or still have a good time, that’s the event that I remember the most,” Dunkin said.
In addition to the executive team, commissioner positions included Raka Mukherjee ’25 for Sustainability Chair, Simran Sethi ’26 for Diversity and Inclusivity Chair, Abbie Oh Arroyo ’25 for Faculty Staff Relations Chair, Kaitlyn Chen ’24 for Judicial and Academic Review Chair, Alex Hamilton and Sarah Paper as Co-5C Event Chairs, Rebecca Yao ’26 for Student Organizations Commissioner and Geeta Karlcut ’26 for Community Building Chair.
This year’s class presidents will include Celine Aoki ’26, Kimai McPhee ’25 and Anabhra Singh ’25, and Destiny Rivera ’24 and Tara Zhang ’24.
Although Dunkin is looking forward to many different components of her presidency, she is most enthusiastic about interacting and building on the determination present within the Scripps community.
“I think being able to talk to people and having this network of incredible, formidable Scripps badasses is really powerful,” she said, “We’re able to lean on each other and I feel like I can lean on my community.”
Image Source: Ellen Hu ’24