Chance Fiorisi, a junior majoring in political science, is one of three candidates on the ballot for Student Association (SA) president — an office that chairs the organization’s E-Board and serves as its primary representative. His responses to Pipe Dream’s questionnaire have been edited for clarity.

1. Why did you decide to run for this SA E-Board position? 

I decided to run for SA president over the mid-semester break. It was a decision that I had made as a result of last semester and more specifically, how the campus was impacted by mental health campaigns. I was frustrated that it took so much for students to finally have a say over mental health resources, with the creation of the mental health oversight committee. This pushed me into the race. I don’t want to wait until something tragic happens for students to finally have a say in our sexual assault resources — I am a victim of sexual assault — and this is the [forefront] reason as to why I am running for president, and I know that with my experience I can not only get the job done, but have us working together.

2. Tell us a bit about yourself — any clubs, hobbies or career plans for the future? 

For those who don’t know — I am currently the executive vice president (EVP) of the [SA], overseeing and advising all clubs on administrative matters. Since coming to campus I have been heavily involved in the SA, serving in it for [three] years as a [College-in-the-Woods representative], then Congress leadership and now EVP. I also have advocated for Binghamton in [state] conferences such as [SUNY Student Association] and even traveled to Washington D.C to advocate for students and more funding for campus food banks. Apart from SA and [government] things, I go to the gym six days a week — when I am good — and I love to travel the states, when I have the money and time. My plans after college are to continue working in public [or] civil service programs such as nonprofits. [I am] really excited also because I am pursuing my [master of public administration] here at [Binghamton University].

3. Describe your platform in a succinct way. 

Students need to have a say in our sexual assault resources. This is my number one priority as a candidate because it is so personal, not only for me but for so many on this campus. I will develop a sexual oversight resource committee within the SA, made up of SA leadership and members of the sexual assault awareness community to tackle the issue of lack of student voices in this subject as well as funding. I will codify this into our SA Management Policies.

We need a president’s council. I will not be the president of the campus alone. If elected, I will codify a working president’s council, made up of cultural organization leaders from across the campus, as well as community council leaders, to ensure that when I speak to University administration, your voices will not only be heard, but my decisions will be made up of yours too. This will be a constitutional responsibility of the president when I am in office.

4. How does your background influence what you are able to offer the campus community? 

I am a [first-generation] student who experienced homelessness at a very young age. Being from a low-income background has entirely shaped my way of life on campus and off. I survived poverty because of government assistance and family, without it I simply wouldn’t be here telling you this now. I can offer a unique understanding of this campus. I have [and] continue to struggle with experiences so many of us are sometimes ashamed of talking about. This is our shared story and with it we learn so much. I am able to offer you a one-on-one relationship, built on trust and understanding. I can also promise you that your struggles will be my struggles. This is something that our next president needs to have, because continuing this sense of trust is crucial for not only our success but also for our mental health.

5. What is your favorite restaurant in Binghamton? 

This is a hard one — me and my boyfriend love to try new things! I would have to say either Spice of India or McDonald’s. I can name so many times where it was like 10 p.m. and I drove up to the McDonald’s [drive-thru] and used our rewards to get free food. Listen I know it’s not the best, but girl is it cheap. As for Spice of India, what can I say? Their food is out of this world on a whole other level. I am a huge fan of Indian food, and this place somehow just gets me to spend way more than what I got in my pocket.