By: Valentina Palm/Staff Writer
Natalie De La Osa was appointed Chief Justice of the Student Government Council at the Modesto Maidique Campus on March 4th at the council’s senate meeting.
She will lead SGC-MMC’s judicial branch as chief administrator of the Supreme Court composed of four justices and two clerks. She will preside over all impeachment proceedings and is responsible for ensuring due process for every case presented by senators.
Cases managed by the judicial branch concern violations of the constitution, misconduct of council members and the mismanagement of activities and services funds or campus-specific budgets.
The position consists of a two-year commitment and she will be paid an estimate of $3,000 per semester.
The Chief Justice must be appointed by the council’s president and confirmed by the senate, according to the SGA constitution. However, this year the senate endorsed Natalie with a recommendation vote on Monday, Feb. 25th and she was then appointed by SGC-MMC President Sabrina Rosell.
“We decided to put the candidates up for that vote prior as a recommendation so that it would really be in the senate’s hand which is representative of the voice of the entire student body just to make the entire process entirely transparent,” said Rosell.
At 20 years old, De La Osa is a University sophomore double-majoring in international relations and political science. She is involved on campus as a student ambassador and member of the sorority Alpha Xi Delta. She also works part-time in a Miami law firm and as an after school care teacher.
Senate members were concerned about all of De La Osa’s commitments and about how much time she would be able to devote to SGA, but she said she is optimistic she will be able to manage time effectively.
“The timing wouldn’t be an issue. I have SGA as a priority and I even said to the council I would drop Student Ambassador if I was not performing correctly,” said De La Osa. “I have a good schedule Monday, Wednesday and Friday between morning until 2 p.m., so those are going to be my ten hours a week.”
De La Osa said her experience working in a law firm will benefit her performance as Chief Justice.
“I think I can apply all the knowledge I’ve learned,” said De La Osa. “I was already familiar with the requirements and I understand the legal language so I knew I could do it.”
Her appointment to Chief Justice filled the position left vacant last semester when former Chief Justice Cooper Eisinger graduated.
For her first initiative as Chief Justice, De La Osa is developing elections conduct workshops for candidates running in upcoming SGC-MMC elections.
“I think it’s important so people are aware these are the rules and they are not going to get what they want going around them,” said De La Osa.
She aims to ensure senators coming in will be proactive with resolutions representing the student body and not chosen solely by their popularity.
“Because of popularity rules, people pick based on friends and not on what they bring to the table and sometimes the system is faulty,” said De La Osa.
Without previous experience in SGA, Her motivation to run for Chief Justice stems from her passion to pursue law after her father was incarcerated when she was young.
“The injustices he went through motivates me personally and motivated my personal career,” said De La Osa.
She will also be in charge of interpreting and amending the laws within the SGA constitution when necessary. For this reason, she said it is her priority to make the constitution’s language more precise.
“I don’t think there should be too much room for interpretation,” said De La Osa.“There are things that should be changed because there could be better wording. Especially when you are talking about applying law, wording is very important.”