A guide to the 2024 Student Government executive election

Photo credit: Roberta Macedo

By Sydney Billings & Caroline Val

Update as of Feb. 22: Stand Forever has won the 2024 Student Government executive election. Roy Carrillo Zamora has been selected as president-elect, Joshua Abel as vice president-elect and Zoe Mutombo as treasurer-elect for the 2024-2025 academic year.

Election season is in full swing at the University of Miami as two opposing tickets, “Stand Forever” and “Elevate,” launched their Student Government campaigns with community events and giveaways planned throughout the week of Feb. 18.

During this year’s SG elections, students will vote in a new president, vice president and treasurer as well as vote between new senate candidates. The polls opened on Monday, Feb. 19 and close out on Wednesday, Feb. 21.

The “Stand Forever” ticket is a team of three juniors competing for spots in the student government executive branch, with presidential candidate Roy Carrillo Zamora, vice presidential candidate Joshua Abel and treasurer candidate Zoe Mutombo.

As an administration, they plan to advocate for student employees by creating a Student Employee Liaison within the Campus Liaison Council and enhance Greek Life experience by opening more dining options during the spring recruitment process.

Additionally, they plan to improve public transportation for UM students in collaboration with other Miami-Dade colleges by speaking with local government officials to increase the college student discount.

The opposing ticket, “Elevate”, introduces presidential candidate Kat Hernandez, vice presidential candidate Bobbi Ward and treasurer candidate Nik Howell.

Student initiatives on the Elevate ticket range from creating international and first-gen student mentorship programs to giving students access to resources like Grammarly+ and discounts for test prep services not limited to the MCAT and LSAT.

Each year, students are given the opportunity to select their representatives for the upcoming school year and let their voices be heard. From Monday to Wednesday, candidates are campaigning on campus, introducing themselves to students and informing them about their initiatives.

Additionally, students who vote in this year’s elections will be automatically entered into a raffle, hosted by the UM Elections Commission, for a chance to win a Stanley cup or a JBL speaker.

Students can cast their votes on the Student Government website before polls close on Wednesday, Feb. 21 at 11:59 p.m. Get to know the candidates below!


From left to right: Juniors Zoe Mutombo for treasurer, Roy Carrillo Zamora for president and Joshua Abel for vice president.
From left to right: Juniors Zoe Mutombo for treasurer, Roy Carrillo Zamora for president and Joshua Abel for vice president running on the Stand Forever ticket. // Contributed photo to The Miami Hurricane

Roy Carrillo Zamora – Candidate for President

Roy Carrillo Zamora from San Jose, Costa Rica, enters the bid for Student Government president with a clear mission to get students and their organizations the resources they need to succeed. As a junior majoring in legal studies and business analytics with a minor in health management and policy, Carrillo Zamora is currently the director of academic affairs in SG and serves as a first year fellow in Mahoney Residential College. Before that, he served as a member of the Academic Liaison Council and a liaison for the Office of Academic Enhancement, where he helped pass a bill in the Faculty Senate that allowed students to apply to become Foote Fellows instead of being chosen upon admission. As president, Carrillo Zamora hopes to create the SG Presidential Fund, which will intend to fill financial gaps in student organization budgets that are often overlooked by the Student Activity Fee Allocation Committee.

“I believe that students are struggling with finding the best resources for their organizations, and I think it’s time for somebody to actually do something about that.”

Joshua Abel – Candidate for Vice President

Joshua Abel is a junior from New Milford, Connecticut, majoring in political science and French and entering the bid for SG vice president. Abel currently serves as the chapter president of Lambda Chi Alpha and is a part of both the President’s 100 and the Office of Undergraduate Admission. This past year, Abel also served as a vice chair of the Homecoming Executive Committee. A candidate with a heart for mentorship, Abel helped spearhead the First-Year Leadership Council’s first LAUNCH Leadership Summit, a leadership training event, which took place this year on Feb. 18. Having also seen a significant increase in Greek Life participation as president of a fraternity on campus, Abel hopes to amplify Greek Life representation in SG and give students the support they need during recruitment season. Abel also hopes to shape the role of vice president into one that is more mentorship-based and focuses more on leadership development.

“My goal has always been to push people a little bit outside of their comfort zones to help them reach things they never once dreamed of.”

Zoe Mutombo – Candidate for Treasurer

Zoe Mutombo is a junior from Pembroke Pines, Fla., majoring in health management and policy and entering the bid for SG treasurer. Mutombo’s goal as treasurer is to maximize the role to help student organizations have as much access to financial resources as possible. For instance, by enhancing the treasurer training process, Mutombo aims to help students better understand the nuances of submitting a budget to SAFAC and ensure their organizations are on-track to succeed. Mutombo previously served as assistant director of SG’s outreach committee and treasurer of the African Student Union. Currently, she serves as external vice president for the African Student Union and a member of Alpha Kappa Psi.

“Our main goal is to put students back into the middle of the student government. At the end of the day, we’re making realistic initiatives that are going to impact people and people who actually have a need for.”


From left to right: Juniors Nik Howell for treasurer, Kat Hernandez for president and Bobbi Ward for vice president.
From left to right: Juniors Nik Howell for treasurer, Kat Hernandez for president and Bobbi Ward for vice president running on the Elevate ticket. // Contributed photo to The Miami Hurricane

Kat Hernandez – Candidate for President

Kat Hernandez is a junior from Miami, Fla., majoring in history, political science and psychology with a minor in business law. From early on in her undergraduate career, Hernandez has been an active member of SG, starting in the Senate in the spring semester of her freshman year and is now currently serving as Speaker. In this role, Hernandez has worked on projects like providing free menstrual products in women’s bathrooms across campus, making sure every restroom is fully stocked. Additionally, Hernandez created a first-generation student senate seat by working with First Gen ‘Canes. Outside of SG, she serves as vice president of internal finance for business fraternity Alpha Kappa Psi, as well as chair of the hospitality and finance committee for commuter organization Great Start. In her bid for president, Hernandez hopes to run on a platform of transparency and approachability while amplifying diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives across campus.

“We want to elevate student voices so we can elevate their undergraduate experiences–helping students reach their full potential.”

Bobbi Ward – Candidate for Vice President

Bobbi Ward is a junior from Asheville, North Carolina, majoring in political science with a minor in business law on track to pursue a dual MD-JD degree. Currently, Ward serves as recruitment chair for pre-med fraternity Phi Delta Epsilon, a secretary and founding member of the Slavic Culture Club, President’s 100 and a member of the Health Professions Mentoring Program. In her role as recruitment chair for PhiDE, Ward has brought in three new classes and mentored over 90 new members throughout their undergraduate experience. As a candidate for SG vice president, Ward hopes to inform students on all the resources available to them through SG by supporting the president’s initiatives, advocating for an environment marked by belonging, transparency and accountability within SG and the broader student body.

“I want to run to be a good mentor for students and bring a new perspective to SG, just because many students don’t even know what SG is.”

Nik Howell – Candidate for Treasurer

Nik Howell is a junior from Destin, Fla., majoring in biochemistry and molecular biology with a minor in health management and policy on the pre-med track. Currently, Howell serves as a liaison to the Office of Undergraduate Research in ALC and previously served two consecutive terms as a senator, where he was the chair of the policy and finance committee. Outside of SG, Howell is involved in President’s 100, ‘Cane Kickoff Orientation and serves as the founding treasurer of the Slavic Culture Club. As a candidate for treasurer, Howell hopes to reinvent the role of treasurer to be more transparent with not only AG finances, but SAFAC and university finances as well, including the Ever Brighter campaign. Additionally, for students struggling with the rising costs of tuition, he hopes to work with the financial aid office to create smaller scholarships for students to help finance their time at the U.

“We want to make sure that all students have the ability to make the most of their time here at the U, and we want to do our part as student leaders to elevate their voices and make sure that they are able to maximize their potential and be a part of their success.”