I have had the great pleasure to have worked personally with Romy Frazier in our Neighborhood Hall Council and to have been her good friend for the last two years. When I found out that she decided to run for Associated Students president, I became really excited because of the potential that UCSB could have under her tenure. During my time in Hall Council, I really noticed something about her that makes her stand out from many people involved in the Residence Hall Association or A.S. She cares about the concerns that people have not only in the classroom, but out of the classroom as well. It started making sense when I also noticed that she was consistently showing up at many of the rallies or sit-ins for issues like the war in Iraq, military recruiters on campus, lesbian, gay, and transgender rights, and the recent immigration debate – all of this while still trying to juggle her responsibilities as our Neighborhood Hall Council President last year and as a Representative at Large this year.

While some people seem to rely merely on their looks or popularity to get their message across, Romy actually relies on her knowledge of students’ concerns, something I can personally attest to. For me, the current immigration debate is a major concern because of the potential impact that it could have on many of my friends and my family. She was really cool and actually told me about an impending rally that UCSB is having. This eventually evolved into a lengthy and deep conversation on immigrant rights. I was really surprised at how informed she was on an issue that concerns so many. But I’m just one random person and understand that all of us have various concerns. Trust me, Romy cares about all of these and – even in the rare occasion that she isn’t informed – she will listen to any of us attentively. The hallmark of her working style is how dependent it is on the input of others. This makes it all the better because it gives us someone whom we know will be accountable to us, the students.

Though she is clearly in touch with issues that concern us today, she is also someone with great ideas on how to make the UCSB experience a fun one. We planned events like Sports Day competitions and Super Bowl parties that brought even the busiest of us together for a good time. These also became some of the many opportunities in which people came together, oftentimes becoming best of friends. While many great events were organized, she still managed to keep her eye on the budget and would allocate money for activities that would benefit all of us. Quarter after quarter, we always ended up with a surplus of money, which allowed us to buy better prizes for our competitions.

One of the many things that makes this campus one of the best in the nation is the fact that we at UCSB can balance having a good time with studying. We have a Facebook.com group that rightfully proclaims we’re one of the most intelligent party schools in the nation. Sure, we know how to party hard and have a good time, but we also get our shit done when it needs to be done. We also pride ourselves in respecting that which makes others happy, so even if you don’t party often, you can still find other ways to have fun. Romy perfectly embodies the eclecticism that is characteristic of our student body. One only needs to look at the great group of people she’s campaigning with to see this. A look at the Facebook group for the Student’s Party will tell us that many of the candidates are active in organizations such as Solidarity Against War, El Congreso, Women’s Ensemble Theater Troupe, Students Stopping Rape, Queer People of Color and – of course – Associated Students. The candidates themselves reflect many forms of diversity ranging from ethnic, sexual, gender and religious beliefs. They are some of the most approachable people on campus and are interested in hearing what we have to say. Together with Romy Frazier as A.S. President, they will go beyond the call of A.S. and make our experiences here memorable.

Pedro Lopez is a senior psychology major.