By Rae Ann Ducut

Students vying for College of Mass Communication (CMC) student council positions faced off at yesterday’s miting de avance dubbed “Hot Off the Grill”.

The miting de avance featured candidates from STAND-UP CMC (Students Alliance for the Advancement of Democratic Rights in UP) and ISA (Interdependent Student-Centered Activism).

Recurring questions thrown at STAND-UP and ISA candidates included issues on activism and their activities and programs during the past year.

STAND-UP defended its militant stance, stating that attending rallies is the highest form of activism and the only one that brings about real change.

“Ang tunay na pagkakaroon ng pagbabago sa lipunan ay hindi po nadadaan sa pagiging fan lamang ng pages sa Facebook,” STAND-UP’s Den Yalung said, referring to the popular social networking site.

Yalung, STAND-UP’s sole candidate for Broadcast Communication representative after Mark Rodel Marmol’s withdrawal (see related article), later admitted that she has yet to join a rally.

Unanswered question

Meanwhile, STAND-UP’s vice chairperson candidate JR Remigio was asked by his ISA counterpart Rix Migriño to delineate “pro-student ideals and being student-centered,” to which he could not provide an answer.

Migriño noted that her party believes in “open-minded” leadership.

“Hindi siya dapat pinghihiwalay dahil when you come to think of it , how can you be pro-student if you’re not student-centered and vice versa? So these two ideals are actually one,” she said.

While ISA’s contenders said that a college student council should always prioritize its students, STAND-UP’s candidates reiterated that the college’s issues root from bigger, national problems.

STAND-UP’s standard bearer Kathy Molina said that national issues should never be separated from student council responsibilities.

‘Visibility’

“Hindi ibig sabihin na por que’t invisible kayo ay wala na tayong ginagawa para sa ating kolehiyo,” Sherwin Su, ISA’s chairperson candidate, said after giving his party 8 out of 10 points on pre-campaign visibility.

He boasted his party’s donation of a wi-fi router, which he said is a primary need of CMC students.

Molina responded by saying that leadership should not be compared to providing wi-fi access.

“Ang tunay na change ay hindi nakukuha lamang sa Internet,” she said.

Molina remarked that ISA’s recent “Vote the Nation” project, a CMC lobby exhibit of the 2010 presidential candidates’ portraits, platforms and credentials, did well to inform the students.

However, she said it was still not sufficient in educating students on the elections, and cited STAND-UP’s poll automation and voter education lectures as better efforts.

“Hot Off The Grill” is the annual CMC miting de avance sponsored by the UP Mass Communicators Organization.

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