New Student Union President, Vice President Work to Unify Student Differences

Chairman of AUC's Board of Trustees Atef Eltoukhy '74 and President Francis Ricciardone meet the current Student Union President Amr El Alfy, Student Union President '17-'18 Mohamed Gadallah and a number of students at the Watson House
Chairman of AUC's Board of Trustees Atef Eltoukhy '74 and President Francis Ricciardone meet the current Student Union President Amr El Alfy, Student Union President '17-'18 Mohamed Gadallah and a number of students at the Watson House

For Mohamed Gadalla and Ahmed Gazar, the newly elected Student Union president and vice president, it is the differences and diversity of AUC’s student body that carry the most potential for campus unity. While this may sound contradictory at first, #unifyingdifferences was the central slogan of their campaign, upon which they ran and won.

The idea of unifying differences came from the fact that we believe that the Student Union is not serving the whole student body,” said Gazar. “Some people on campus feel that they are isolated and that the president and vice president are just treating them like votes during the election. So Mohamed and I are trying to truly focus on every sector of the University.”

Similarly, Gadalla emphasized that “there is specific potential and capacity in every single student on campus, but it might be different from what the union is focusing on. The idea is to gather these potentials and to build on them and enrich and enlarge them. We want the Student Union to make every single student feel like they are here for them.”

As Gadalla notes, communication is a crucial part of achieving their goal of uniting differences. “We will be focusing a lot on communication," he said. “Each year, the Student Union has major accomplishments and achievements, but the student body isn’t hearing about them, so we need to fix this.”

“We also want to communicate with the faculty and staff,” he added. “For example, faculty have lots of initiatives that they’d like to introduce, but they don’t always have the support of the community or know how to deal with students and student collaboration, so that is something that we welcome very much.”

Even between themselves, Gadalla and Gazar are using their differences to strengthen their plans for their time at the head of the Student Union. Specifically, Gadalla was already part of the Student Union and had previously worked on several issues, while Gazar’s background is largely in other student extracurricular activities, such as 3alraseef, a student club dedicated to changing and improving the lives of street children. “Coming from different backgrounds -- Mohamed from inside the [Student] Union and me from outside -- we can complement each other,” explained Gazar.

When discussing their plans as president and vice president, both also noted the challenges facing them. Discussing the issue of student tuition, Gadalla stated that “this is something that I think will be solved by efficient negotiations with the administration about the specifics of the platform, the external circumstances and how we’re going to work alongside the administration.”

As president and vice president, Gadalla and Gazar will represent the student body. Additionally, as leaders of the Student Union, they will play a large role in serving students through initiatives like the SU Market and SU Cafe. Gazar also noted that they “want to empower students through many ways.”