Photo: Lauren Horsch
As the crowd gathered at Pomerantz Stage, two friends greeted each other. Joey Gale and Justin Kochanski shook hands and wished each other luck as they awaited the results of the First-Year Senator elections.
As Election Commission Co-Chair Jessie Hill walked onto the stage, the crowd fell silent. She spoke about the campaign and praised both candidates for their efforts.
Then, she made the announcement. Kochanski received 236 of the 411 votes and became the first-year senator for the class of 2015.
“It was such a huge relief,” Kochanski said.
He also said he felt a “big sense of accomplishment.”
Kochanski, a biochemistry and molecular biology major from Bartlett, Ill., is ready to get to work around the senate table.
His first official meeting as a senator will be tonight.
He said the next week or two will be busy for him as he begins his job. He will start off by getting to know the First-Year Interest Committee, which he will now be in charge. He said he is looking forward to getting to know his committee and learning its strengths.
One of his goals is to get more student involvement at sporting events to help increase attendance for all teams.
Kochanski said that he would like to thank all of the first-year students who supported him and his opponent, Gale.
“It’s not easy running against someone you’re close to,” he said. “He (Gale) ran a good campaign.”