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Saint Mary’s candidates run unopposed

first_imgJuniors Kat Sullivan and Maddy Martin will run unopposed for 2013-14 Saint Mary’s student body president and vice president. The ticket’s candidacy was announced Tuesday, one day after submitting its platform. Sullivan and Martin bring extensive experience on Student Government Association (SGA) and on other campus boards. Sullivan, has been a member of the Student Activities Board since her first year at the College. This year, she holds an executive position on SGA as the vice president of external affairs. Martin also holds a position on SGA as the vice president of finance. Sullivan, a communication studies major with business administration and film studies minors from Melrose, Mass., said she wants to be student body president to give students a louder voice in policy and programming at Saint Mary’s. “[I want to] make sure my fellow Belles know that they can come to [SGA] with any questions or concerns. … I care about the needs of the Saint Mary’s Belles,” she said. “I realize how vital it is that the voices of the students are heard.” Sullivan said she wants to follow in her mother’s footsteps as student body president. Joan McDermott Sullivan served as Saint Mary’s student body president as a senior during the 1975-76 school year. “My mom has always held a special place in her heart for the school and her memories here,” she said. “It would mean a great deal to me to be able to share this with her.” Martin, a biology and Spanish double major from Grand Rapids, Mich., said she saw room to improve the student government’s approachability. “I would love to focus on better communication between SGA and the student body,” she said. “I feel like there is still some disconnect and I would love to try to eliminate that. I want students to be able to know who we are and that they can come to us for anything.” In their platform, Sullivan and Martin said they plan for students, clubs, administrations and SGA to “work together as a community.” Sullivan said assembling the right team would be essential to reaching this goal. “I want to make sure that we really hit the ground running for the 2013-14 academic year,” she said. “It will be really important to have a well-established structure and continue with what previous SGA leaders have already accomplished. That being said, choosing girls who want to have a positive impact at Saint Mary’s will be key.” In addition to better communication and effective leadership, Martin said the team intends to introduce initiatives and plan events to instill more unity on campus. “I would really like to increase the school spirit around campus,” she said. “I am so proud to be a Saint Mary’s Belle and I believe all girls should feel this way.” Sullivan echoed Martin’s goal for an increased sense of school spirit and inclusion. “I’d love to focus on sisterhood and community,” she said. “Saint Mary’s girls have a lot of pride in who we are and what this school stands for. I want to make sure that every girl on this campus, both current and future Belles feel welcome and comfortable.” Sullivan said she wants to improve the quality and attendance of campus programming. “My personal goals include increasing attendance at events through a better understanding of [online information platform] OrgSync and building on the strong bonds that Saint Mary’s women have,” she said. “I want to raise awareness on issues that are prevalent on campus such as bullying, depression, anxiety and eating disorders, just to name a few. “By making these issues more known we will better able to help Saint Mary’s women who struggle with these issues and bring the community together.” Though only one ticket is running, Sullivan and Martin must receive a majority vote on Feb. 28 in order to assume their new positions upon the April 1 SGA turnover. “I’m happy about [being the only ticket] but I hope that people feel confident in our abilities as leaders,” Sullivan said. “I want people to trust us to voice their concerns. I think that campaigning will still be important because people should still know who we are so they know who to ask when they need something done at Saint Mary’s.”last_img read more

US H1N1 vaccine delayed as cases and deaths rise

first_imgOct 16, 2009 (CIDRAP News) – Production delays are cutting into federal pandemic vaccine–supply projections at a time when virus activity is widespread in 41 states and children’s deaths are spiraling, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said today.Since August, federal officials have predicted that 45 million pandemic vaccine doses would be available by mid October, but today the CDC said the total so far is 11.4 million.The slow start is complicating the launch of pandemic flu vaccine campaigns for state and local public health departments as well as school districts. Some have postponed or cancelled events because they don’t know when they will receive their vaccine supplies. For example, the Lawrence-Douglas County Health Department, based in Lawrence, Kansas, recently cancelled Oct 30 clinics at the fairgrounds and the University of Kansas because it wasn’t sure when the vaccine would arrive.Anne Schuchat, MD, director of the CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, said some manufacturers are reporting delays because antigen yields are lower than expected. She also said it takes time to conduct potency and purity tests on each lot of the vaccine.”We are not cutting any corners. It’s very important that this process be done safely and carefully,” she stated.Schuchat acknowledged the effect that the slower-than-expected trickle of pandemic vaccine is having on state health departments, and she warned that the next 2 weeks will be challenging. “We’re all going to have to bear with the situation,” she said, adding that supplies will likely become more plentiful by the end of October and into November.States have ordered 8 million of the currently available doses, and half of it is injectable vaccine, Schuchat said, which is good news because it gives authorities more flexibility in delivering doses to some high-priority groups. Certain groups couldn’t receive the very first doses, which were the live attenuated intranasal form of the vaccine, made by MedImmune, which is recommended only for healthy people aged 2 through 49 years.Federal officials are also anxious about the slow start to pandemic vaccine distribution. “It’s hard to see the illnesses rise,” Schuchat said.She acknowledged that the situation puts public health officials in a difficult position when communicating the vaccination message to members of the public, who are being urged to obtain the vaccine at a time when delays are hampering the launch of immunization campaigns.The number of states reporting widespread activity is unprecedented for this time of year, she said. The percentage of doctor visits for influenza-like illnesses continues to rise and is well above the national baseline; for the first time this flu season the mortality rate from pneumonia and influenza has risen above the epidemic threshold.”This is a very busy and difficult flu season,” Schuchat said.Ten more pediatric deaths were reported to the CDC over the past week, raising the number of fatal pandemic H1N1 cases in children to 86, she said. The number of deaths in September alone is more than the total for some entire flu seasons, Schuchat added. Since Aug 30, the CDC has received reports of 43 pediatric deaths; 38 have been confirmed as pandemic H1N1, and five are still undergoing subtyping.About half (19) of those deaths occurred in teens, which appears to be a shift from earlier in the outbreak when most pediatric fatalities were in the youngest age-groups.”These are very sobering statistics, and they’re likely to increase,” said Schuchat. Some of the young people had underlying conditions, but others did not.Meanwhile, some sites are reporting shortages of seasonal flu vaccine, Schuchat noted. So far, 82 million doses have been distributed, which is 5 million more than the previous week. Federal officials have said they expect producers to make 114 million seasonal flu vaccine doses.See also:Lawrence-Douglas County Health Department Web sitelast_img read more