Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Q&A: Achebe, Pasieka GUSA Executive Ticket Discusses Platform

Chijioke Achebe (SFS ’25) and Devon Pasieka (MSB ’25), who are running for Georgetown University Student Association (GUSA) president and vice president, said they have built their platform around increasing accessibility, working to utilize their networks across campus and connections with administration officials.

The Hoya sat down with current GUSA Senator Achebe and GUSA’s current Executive Crisis Response Director Paseika to discuss their campaign goals and how they plan to achieve them. Voting opens Nov. 10 and closes Nov. 12.

This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

Courtesy Devon Pasieka | Achebe and Pasieka are running for GUSA president and vice president in the upcoming Nov. 10-12 GUSA election.

If elected, what are your top priorities?

Achebe: We want to make GUSA more accessible. I’m in the senate and Devon is in the executive, but we do have different networks and connections that just aren’t that little GUSA bubble that exists. We know more people than that around this campus and we want to make us more accessible to those people who aren’t really involved in it at all. This work is vitally important, but a lot of people in GUSA take themselves way too seriously. I’m just a college kid who wants to help my classmates have a better, fairer, safer college experience. We need to make it more accessible and more responsive to students. That’s my primary goal.

Pasieka: I think making GUSA more accessible starts with going back to our roots. GUSA’s goal should ultimately be making the student experience better. It should be allowing students to make a greater impact at Georgetown themselves. And I think right now, Georgetown hinders that. There are so many different methods of communication that come in, and we don’t have a common network that shares every day what is going on at Georgetown. If we’re the undergraduate student association, we should be helping our students take advantage of Georgetown. So I think if elected, my first priority is to look out for people who feel super overwhelmed and out of touch and not knowing where to get their information to have GUSA be that center.

How do you plan to facilitate interactions between the student body and GUSA?

Achebe: GUSA itself is quite insular, but Devon and I do a lot of different things with a lot of different people on campus. We know a lot of people on this campus and that’s the first step. You want people who you see around and can just walk up to them and speak with them. There’s a lot of internal reform I think GUSA can undergo to make the body itself more transparent and more accessible, but I think the first step is having an executive that you know and recognize and see around campus.

Pasieka: I’m so lucky to be a part of so many awesome groups on campus, and those groups are why I’m running because of the concerns that I’ve seen from those groups. GUSA has been a great learning experience to see how things get done and where they kind of reach a hard stop. But truly, it’s those groups and the people that I’ve met here and wanting to be involved on campus because I want to give back to Georgetown because I see that there’s room for improvement here: I’ve learned that through the network that I’ve had from the involvement I’ve had at Georgetown. Those people are definitely who I’m running for.

What experiences do you have that qualify you for this position?

Achebe: I am in the senate and I am the vice chair of the finance and appropriations committee, which I think is the most important committee within GUSA. We take the student activities fund and allocate it to the clubs on campus. Outside of that, I’m in the Georgetown University Alumni and Student Federal Credit Union and Georgetown University Student Investment Fund. Knowing all these people, hearing their stories, their experiences, what makes them tick and what’s important to all of these groups of people I think makes me the ideal candidate. 

Pasieka: I hold leadership positions on TEDx Georgetown and I hold a board position in Georgetown Student Capital Partners. And it has been great to watch both of those clubs grow, and having that experience definitely gave me a new insight into how an organization should be picked apart and analyzed to make it run more efficiently. GUSA allows me to be creative and think of ways to alter and improve the student experience is really fulfilling.

How do you believe you will be able to accomplish the goals you set during your term?

Achebe: I’ve been able to build relationships with members of the administration in GUSA, so that’s where it starts. I think knowing that we have those lines of communication is how it starts. Not just having talked to students a lot, but also the administrators, because we derive our power from them. I know that we have those relationships in place already so that day one we can get to work for Georgetown students.

Pasieka: I want to start, on day one, collecting every single event that’s going on at Georgetown that day. I want that to be a legacy of ours that no Georgetown student can feel like they’re out of touch. That’s one thing that’s super tangible that we can do. I also think the most important thing to do is create a GUSA working group with our maintenance team and our Leo’s team, because they work really hard for us and are severely understaffed. We need to make sure that, as a part of the Georgetown community, we understand their needs too, because as much as we’re serving the undergraduate students, they’re also serving us. 

Why should voters support your ticket?

Achebe: We have experiences both inside and outside GUSA, so we’re not insular at all. We know we do different things around here besides just sitting and talking about resolutions that don’t really mean a whole lot. People have seen us and know we’re gonna fight for them. They know that we have their priorities front and center. They know that we care and so that’s why they should support us. 

Pasieka: We’re unique. We want to give back to the Georgetown community. There’s nothing that is a personal gain, but we’ve both had some great opportunities that we want to share and we want to make sure that the student experience is a shared positive one, especially coming back from so many years of just disconnectedness. 

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