Photo by Alex Fylypovych/The Mirror

The winners of the 2014 Fairfield University Student Association presidential and vice presidential elections are officially Alex Cucchi ’15 and Anif McDonald ’16, respectively, in a landslide victory over the competition.

They defeated fellow candidates Lindsey Hanley ’15 and her vice presidential candidate Janice Herbert ’15, and lone presidential candidate Mariano Portocarrero ’15. Cucchi will move up from serving as vice president for current FUSA president Alex Long ’14.

“I think what [Cucchi] has done last year has primed him for this position,” said Long. “The relationships that he has sought to build, especially with a lot of administration at this school, will only benefit his presidency in many positive ways.”

About 100 students were in attendance at the Levee on Tuesday night to show their support for the presidential, vice presidential and senatorial candidates.

Juniors Lindsey Hanley and Janice Herbert speak with Stags TV as they await the results of the 2014 FUSA election.

Juniors Lindsey Hanley and Janice Herbert speak with Stags TV as they await the results of the 2014 FUSA election.

After the senators for each class year were announced, Long said that Cucchi had won the presidency. Upon hearing this, the crowd at the Levee burst into cheers of “Cucchi” as music started playing.

“It’s awesome. I’m just really excited to lead this university in the right direction for the next year,” said Cucchi about his victory. “Alex [Long] has been such a great mentor to me and taught me so much about what it means to be a leader.”

1,165 votes were cast this year, the most in 10 years. This is an increase from last year when “about 750 people voted,” according to former FUSA election commissioner Julianne McGrath ‘13.

Cucchi secured the presidency with 757 votes while Hanley and Portocarrero recorded 221 and 132 votes, respectively.

For the vice presidency, McDonald, Cucchi’s former high school classmate, received 768 votes while Herbert only received 264.

“It’s a little disappointing, but Alex and I are great friends and I’m excited to work with him,” said Hanley. “I think that they will be great. I never had any doubts about that.”

Portocarrero expressed a similar sentiment: “It’s tough, but I gave it my best shot. I’m really happy for Alex. He’s going to be a great leader next year,” he said.

From 10:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, students were allowed to cast their votes in the Barone Campus Center. A large majority of students, though mostly underclassmen, headed to the BCC Info Desk to cast their votes for FUSA president, vice president and class senators.

Although it may seem like the seniors do not have much to vote for, Long said he thinks otherwise.

“This is how seniors will leave their mark on the school and what they’re doing is investing in the future of this institution,” said Long.

Presidential candidate Mariano Portocarrero '15 gives an interview at the Levee.

Presidential candidate Mariano Portocarrero ’15 gives an interview at the Levee.

Senior Spencer Colpitts agreed, saying, “I think it’s important when we leave that we know we’re leaving Fairfield in good hands.”

Throughout the day, Cucchi and McDonald were campaigning at the desk by Einstein’s. The two were handing out free pizza and other treats and playing music as a way to encourage voters.

“I saw the posters and everyone doing their campaigning, so I went for it,” said Maeve Conley ’15 on her decision to vote at the FUSA elections. “The freebies definitely enticed me as a college student. It created a good atmosphere for the election time.”

After the elections were over, students reflected on what they thought of the new FUSA president.

“I think he campaigned really hard and congratulations to him,” said Chris Finelli ‘15. “I think FUSA’s in good hands. It’s always been good, and I’m sure he’ll keep that up.”

After winning in a landslide fashion, Cucchi will have a lot to prove to the many students who voted for him.

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