Comptroller candidate Richa Jain said she is running for office with the campaign slogan “Richer with Richa” because she hopes to enrich the college experience of University of Connecticut students.
Jain, an eighth-semester management information systems and biological sciences double major, said she currently holds the positions of Undergraduate Student Government (USG) parliamentarian, senator and funding board member. She added that she is also a University Budget Committee member.
Jain said she feels the positions which she currently holds, as well as her past experience as the conference director of Model United Nations at UConn, qualify her to serve as comptroller.
“I was the conference director of Model United Nations on campus, and that is essentially the CFO (chief financial officer) of Model UN, and I’ve personally transacted about $156,000,” Jain said. “Having someone…personally transact that amount of money takes a lot of responsibility and trust, and I believe I would be good as comptroller because I have had that responsibility upon me before where I’ve had to step up to the plate and handle large lump sums of money.”
Jain said that if she is elected, she would like to revamp the informational budget system which allows USG to see how many student groups rely on its funding. Jain said she additionally hopes to implement a system which would enable student groups to check the stage on which their funding requests are as they undergo review.
“I feel that (such a system) is a very important part of transparency and accountability,” Jain said. “Students feel frustrated because they send in their funding request but they don’t know where it is right now or what’s happening to it or in whose hands it is going.”
Jain said she aims, if elected, to create an inventory system that student groups could cross-check to avoid making repeat purchases. Jain said she would also like to decrease unnecessary expenditures internally in USG, hold more town halls to address student groups’ concerns, have office hours as frequently as possible so students can come to her with their questions and make Tier II student group funding request training sessions increasingly interactive.
“Right now, I see the training sessions being something where student groups are there, they see a presentation, they see a PowerPoint, but a lot of information is coming right at them,” Jain said. “So I would like to create a system where students can…maybe try and do a fake funding request and see how to actually (complete a funding request).”
Jain said she wants student organizations to know that USG supports them.
“We are there for them and we are trying to help and we are trying to meet them halfway if possible,” Jain said. “And if they can also meet us halfway, then power to all of us.”
Jain said her favorite part of being at UConn is her fellow students.
“It’s the people that make the environment,” Jain said, “and I really like the environment.”
Alexandra Retter is the associate news editor for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.