Days before debate, student body presidential primary down to 2 candidates


With the first debate in Kansas State’s student body presidential election on the horizon, only two candidates remain in the running after two former candidates dropped out.

Devisha Pandey, sophomore in open option, was not in attendance at the mandatory candidate meeting Monday evening, resulting in her disqualification from participating in the election. The violation was filed Tuesday morning by Kristen Schau, elections commissioner and sophomore in political science.

Around the same time, Mohammad Al Abdullah, senior in industrial engineering, suspended his candidacy. Al Abdullah said he wants to learn more about the university before taking on the role of student body president. In the meantime, he said he plans to run in the general election as a College of Engineering student senator.

Now, only Ryan Kelly, junior in communication studies and speaker of the student senate, and Jansen Penny, junior in industrial engineering and chair of the Privilege Fee Committee, remain in the race.

Both of the remaining candidates have previously indicated their intent to participate in Thursday’s presidential debate.

The primary debate, which will be moderated by the Collegian and KSDB FM in collaboration with Student Governing Association, will be held in the K-State Student Union Courtyard on Thursday at 12:30 p.m.

To submit questions for the debate, click here.

Voting in the primary election opens at noon on Feb. 12 and closes at 6 p.m. on Feb. 13. There will be a write-in option for candidates not on the ballot.

My name is Kaylie McLaughlin and I'm the ex-managing editor and audience engagement manager of the Collegian. Previously, I've been the editor-in-chief and the news editor. In the past, I have also contributed to the Royal Purple Yearbook and KKSU-TV. Off-campus, you can find my bylines in the Wichita Eagle, the Shawnee Mission Post and KSNT News. I grew up just outside of Kansas City in Shawnee, Kansas. I’m a senior in digital journalism with a minor in French and a secondary focus in international and area studies. As a third-generation K-Stater, I bleed purple and my goal is to serve the Wildcat community with accurate coverage.