Meet the Candidates
Executive Ticket (President, Vice-President)
Karla Shaffer and Maria Stephen
Karla Shaffer is a junior Political Science major with an environmental studies concentration from Doylestown, PA. Karla is in the University Honors program, and currently serves in Student Government as a Senator for the Class of 2024. She works within the Safety, Justice, and Service Committee, where she updated and implemented the “Royals Vote” plan for the 2022 midterm and “Earth Month” 2023. This work is facilitated by her role in the Sustainability Committee and the Laudato Si Committee. She also serves as a representative in the University Governance Council. Outside student government, Karla is an Officer for the Sustainability and Conservation Club. She also works in the Office of Community Relations and the Office of Sustainability. Karla is involved in the local community through her internship with Physicians for Social Responsibility PA where she follows environmental health legislation and collaborates with local climate justice groups. Maria Stephen is a sophomore triple major in History, Political Science and Philosophy with a legal studies concentration from Montgomery County, PA. She has served as a Class of 2025 senator since the Fall of 2021. Throughout her past two years on Student Government, she has been an active senator dedicated to increasing inclusivity on campus. She has written club charter for various clubs, created her own event called “Speed Faithing” and advocated for diversity and inclusivity on campus. This year, she serves as Chairwoman of the Chair of the Safety Justice and Service Committee and a chairperson for both the Ellacuría Initiative Board and the University Governance Committee. Through these roles, she advocates for all students and focuses on ensuring that students feel safe and happy on campus. Besides student government, she is involved in Mock Trial, the Pre-Law Society, Campus Ministries, and part of the Special Jesuit Liberal Arts (SJLA) honors program. In the past year, Karla and Maria have worked closely together on student government and university committees, spearheading projects and discussions that are productive and innovative. Even before their time together in Student Government, Karla and Maria met as two empowered women dedicated to action in the NEW Leadership program. From this week-long program for women in politics, they learned how to advocate for social change and put ideas into action. Karla and Maria’s individual ideas synergize into a campaign prioritizing diversity, inclusivity, administrative accountability, and sustainability. They will prioritize making student government an approachable group for students and foster an inviting space for our senators to bring their projects to fruition while feeling supported by their fellow senators. Karla and Maria hope to make the campus a positive place for students and for the Scranton community, and are devoted to creating the change that our constituents want to see. Above all, Karla and Maria want to promote care for our common home– making all students feel heard and seen, and fostering a campus that values the planet and marginalized communities. Karla and Maria are ready to lead the student body and senate in novel ways.
Class of 2024 Candidates (4)
Jeremy Dickinson is from Hyde Park, NY and is a junior nursing student at The University of Scranton who is running for a Student Government Class of 2024 Senator position. Jeremy is honored to have served as a Senator for the Class of 2024 for the past three years. He is hopeful to continue his Student Government journey during the 2023-2024 school year. Jeremy enjoys advocating and being a source of strength for his constituents. One of Jeremy’s proudest accomplishments this past academic year was getting a Dippin’ Dots machine on 1st Floor DeNaples. He has collaborated with his fellow Senators and the Campus Life and Dining Committee on several projects, including an Aramark Appreciation Day Event. In addition to Student Government, Jeremy is an active member of Liva Arts Company on campus. As a cancer survivor, Jeremy believes it is important to help those in need, which has inspired him to pursue a career in nursing. After receiving a Make-A-Wish in 2006, Jeremy has had the pleasure of serving the foundation as a fundraiser, Speaker's Bureau member, social media volunteer, and most recently, Alumni Committee participant. Jeremy feels he is qualified to be a Senator for his class because he is dedicated to making a positive difference during his time as a Royal. Finally, Jeremy is eager to establish outlets that will provide students with a sense of acceptance and belonging at Scranton.
Elaine Musa is running for Class of 2024 Senator. She is an accounting major from Mamaroneck, New York. Her main goal is to represent the students the best she can.
Sander Danchak is a junior at the University of Scranton with a political science major, a finance minor, and a legal studies concentration. A simple word that can describe him is “service.” He is a man willing to help whoever asks, and he always puts others before himself. The Danchak family also bleeds purple and white. His father was class of ’84, while Sander’s twin brother is in the class of ’24 with him. The Danchak brothers currently play ice hockey at the U, and Sander shows the Royal team spirit that is shared between the students and staff members within athletics and other clubs. Sander is a member of the mock trial team, prelaw society, hockey team, and participates in various other activities. If you vote for Sander, you are voting for a future lawyer, a teammate, and a determined man that is willing to fight for justice and success for all his classmates. Vote for Sander as 2024 class senator.
Class of 2025 Candidates (4)
Brian Castrogiovanni is a sophomore running for Class of 2025 Senator. Brian is from Moscow PA and is majoring in Political Science with a concentration in Legal Studies. After graduating he plans to pursue a career in the legal field. Born and raised in Lackawanna County, Brian has always considered Scranton his home. From a very young age, he has been involved in public service. From achieving the rank of Eagle Scout where he completed hundreds of hours of community service, to serving as a member of Moscow Borough Council where he was the head of the Young Visionaries Committee, public service has been his way of channeling his desire to make the community a better place for all who call it home. At the University, Brian is involved with the Pre-Law Society, and is a competing member of the Mock Trial Team where he, along with the rest of the team, have traveled and competed against teams from across the country. Now Brian wants to channel his energy and passion into making Scranton the place he knows it can be. As a Class of 2025 Senator he will push for a student-oriented approach in all facets of university life including dining services, sustainability, education cost, and student happiness.
Theresa Pham is a biology major at The University of Scranton. She has served on student government for the past two years, becoming the head of the Campus Life and Dining Committee this year. Outside of student government, she is involved in working at admissions, tutoring biology and chemistry, being the social media chair of the health promotion club, and being a member of UCO, Asia Club, and HPO.
Class of 2026 Candidates (4)
Molly White is seeking re-election to the Class of 2026 Student Government Senate. She currently serves on the Academic and Scholastic Affairs committee of Student Government and works directly with the Kania School of Management. She majors in both Communications and Philosophy. She is a member of the Women’s Track and Field team, SJLA, various clubs and organizations on campus, and works for rec-sports. She is from Scranton and is a commuter. Molly is excited to help develop the future of Scranton, and hopes to continue her work with Student Government.
Hi everyone, I am James Gammello, a proud member of the class of 26, Scranton Rowing, Italian Society, Campus Ministries, and an Orientation Assistant! I am blessed to be the middle child and brother of two amazing sisters and the son of two native New Yorkers who are small business owners. Who raised us in Beautiful Bucks County, Pa! Ever since I was a small child, I have been someone to lean on. I enjoy actively helping my friends and loved ones through their struggles and or just being there to make them laugh. I love to help and support others; furthermore, I love to advocate for those who want their voices to be heard! My favorite things to do are making my friends laugh, going on long walks with My wonderful dog Rascal, skiing, hiking, kayaking, and just generally enjoying the outdoors. As a proud Italian American, I love Italian food and culture, as well I love meeting new people and learning and experiencing their wonderfully unique cultures. I hope this explains a little about myself; don't hesitate to contact me through email, text, dm, or Snap! As I previously mentioned, I love to be someone others can depend on and an advocate for others. So please reach out and ask questions or suggest things you would like to have said to the Student Government
Chelsea Curran is a first-year student from Doylestown, Pennsylvania. She is currently a part of Student Government as a Senator and is working to continue to represent the Class of 2026. Academically, Chelsea is majoring in Political Science and Criminal Justice with a Legal Studies concentration. On top of this, she stays involved in clubs as a member of the United Cultural Organization, Pre-Law Society, Political Science Club, and Criminal Justice Club. As a Senator, Chelsea wants to keep addressing critical issues and advocating for the interests of all students. For the 2023-2024 school year, Chelsea’s main priority is to connect students with more volunteer organizations and set up opportunities for her peers to get involved with bettering the Scranton community. Choose Chelsea, choose progress.
Hi everyone! My name is Buse Onat and I am running for the class of 2026 senator position for the upcoming school year!I am a criminal justice and philosophy major on a pre-law track. I am originally born in Turkey, raised in North Jersey, but finished my high school in Clarks Summit, PA. I love to do all sorts of things like play instruments, make music, draw, write books, play volleyball, and run. I am very open to meeting people at all times and communicating the problems of our student body to our school. I am also a part of the mock trial team, pre-law society, philosophy society, political science club, criminal justice club, random acts of kindness club, photography club and many other. Additionally, I work for CTLE and TSC (student consultant). I would love to serve for our class of 2026 in the upcoming school
Residential Senator Candidates (3)
Wilmarr Saint Surin
Wilmarr Saint Surin is a biology major and member of the class of 2024 at the University of Scranton. He is involved in many extra-curricular activities on campus such as theatre, research, residence life, etc. Now he plans on joining student government as a Residential Senator in order to represent those living on campus. Wilmarr wants to be a voice for others and his goal is to improve the wellbeing of University of Scranton residents as much as he can. He will do what needs to be done to create a positive impact.
Lamar Bishop is a KSOM student attending the University of Scranton, double majoring in Business Administration & Management, with a Concentration in Legal Studies. Born up North in Bronx, New York, but later moved down South to Georgia, Lamar is the eldest of 3, having a younger brother & sister. Incidentally, he’s also a first-generation student. Extensively involved in clubs/organizations throughout high school, it’s not a surprise to say that Lamar is quite involved around campus as well, being the secretary of FBLA-PBL, a student consultant of PILLAR, the Student Learning Chair of KSAB, and much more. Lamar is also a Resident Assistant and Royal Ambassador. Personality-wise, he’s friendly, observant, honest, and ambitious. Lamar is also known to be responsible, dependable, and trustworthy. His hobbies are vast, extending to writing books, playing video games, creative planning, tutoring, and coding. Lamar dabbles in a bit of everything, to say the least. Currently, Lamar’s aspiration is to strengthen and embolden the Scranton experience for students here at the University of Scranton and his long-term goal is to earn his MBA.
Off-Campus Senator Candidates (2)
Hi, my name is Kyle Kennelly. I’m 20 years old, from Long Island NY, and I play rugby here at the University.
Caitlin Doughton is a current junior, Class of 2024 Senator on Student Government. She has Biology and Philosophy majors, with Latin and Theology/Religious Studies minors, along with a Health Humanities Concentration. Caitlin is a member of SJLA. Since her freshman year, Caitlin has been a Class of 2024 Senator on Student Government. Within the past three years, Caitlin has been appointed liaison for the Jane Kopas Women’s Center and Dining Services. She was also a student senate representative on the University Governance Council, which comprises Student, Faculty, and Staff Senate members. In the 2022-2023 senate, Caitlin currently liaises with the Center for Student Engagement. Caitlin’s campus involvements outside of Student Government include serving as the 2022-2023 Vice President of the Remote Area Medical Club, working as a Writing Consultant in CTLE, and being a TA for Psychology Statistics. Caitlin is also a member of the Health Professions Organization and Biology Club. She is extremely passionate about her off-campus job as an Emergency Department medical scribe at Geisinger, alongside participating in service at the Nativity Miguel School of Scranton and Habitat for Humanity. Caitlin moved off-campus for her junior year, and she hopes to continue her advocacy work by representing her fellow students who reside off campus!
International Senator Candidates (1)