Ayo Banjo 


Meeting Hours

Time: Wednesdays from 2:00pm - 5:00pm

By Appointment

Location: 2nd Floor, Student Union Building

Major Political Psychology
College Oakes



Hey everyone, my name is Ayo Banjo and I am so very excited to serve as your Student Body President for the academic year of 2018-2019. I would like to formally introduce y’all to this year’s SUA!

I was born in Texas, and raised in California. My family is originally from Nigeria, specifically the Yoruba tribe. Growing up as an African and African-American has played an essential role to understanding the various identities we face in this world: the ones we’re born in and the ones involuntarily given to us. This effects us everywhere, especially on this campus. The student body has so many intersections of identities, and the way we address concerns must come from a place of unique and creative perspectives. I don’t believe in applying everything horizontally equal, because we don’t all need the same things. Leading the student body with a framework of vertical equity is my goal. We’re college students learning how to be the best versions of ourselves. I want you to know that college allows us to explore. And during this exploration of life, always know that we got your back. I hadn't always recieved that constant intersected equitable support growing up. And because of that, I look to give as much support from SUA and my office as possible. We’re a community of students, binded together by our urge to succeed and by the unique problems we each endure. So let us be here for you. I know I will.


Past Involvement:

Before SUA, I first became involved in my college student government (Oakes Senate). From there, I had the privilege and opportunity to be appointed as an Oakes Representative to SUA. I created and chaired a committee for a brief time, and then focused on allocating funding to smaller organizations and new events. I was also briefly involved in Lobby Corps.

Other than SUA, I have been actively involved in UCSC’s Black Student Union, Black Men’s Alliance, and a member of the first ever Student Success Advisory Committee under the Vice Provost of Student Success. 

A large part of my previous involvement deals with organizing around tuition hikes and housing affordability. I have been an active advocate for increased funding in regards to mental health facilities, speaking at a UCSA press conference. I have organized around gun control, speaking at the March For Our Lives rally at the California State Capitol. I worked for the NAACP Youth and College Division to host workshops on college access and affordability. Organizing fuels my passion to create change around our environment by collectively building the wealth of leadership.


Accomplishments this year:

  1. Secured about half a million dollars to fight for housing justice in Santa Cruz. This includes providing aid to students facing eviction, as well as providing free legal services by hiring a full time lawyer that works for the student body.
  2. Reformed UC policy on police, ensuring body cameras and student accountability over implementation of reforms.
  3. Partnered with engineering student leaders to reform the engineering department, addressing the sexual violence and inappropriate behavior. 
  4. Identified necessary changes to UC policy on selecting Chancellors, to become more transparent to students, and ensured UCSC Chancellor search committee accountability.
  5. Fought for the unionization of workers on Student Housing West plan, while advocating for subsidized rooms for low-income students in new housing structures, and ensuring child care facilities are kept affordable for student parents, ongoing.
  6. Reached an agreement with UCOP to meet with Black student leaders across the UC system, regularly.
  7. Represented UC environmental justice values at the United Nations, encouraging global policy makers to carry out sustainable goals by 2030. 
  8. Advocated for AFSCME contract on UC Council of Student Body Presidents, ongoing.
  9. Collaborated with the Snail Movement to pass a faculty resolution supporting safe on-campus overnight parking for our houseless students.
  10. SUA Reforms: Implemented Conflict Resolution protocol, passed the SUA constitutional amendments (thanks to Rep. Stephan Edgars), restructured SUA’s priorities by moving funding solely into SOFA to focus on organizing in SUA meetings, increased funding for studentorganizations by about $30,000, increased SUA’s social media presence by 200%, initiated Committee on Student Worker Protections, now established as the Labor Commission (thanks to the Worker Student Solidarity Coalition), and gave SUA voting seats to International Student Union (thanks to our SUA Treasurer Raphael) as well as the Society of Women Engineers, Fiat Justice, MSA, and the Snail Movement.

 To learn more about this year's success, checkout the Presidential report backs tab.


Fun Facts about yourself:

I became the youngest and first Freshman to serve as UCSC's Student Body President this year!

I am extremly passionate about theatre and entertainment. I see it as an art, a way to influence others' closed-minded perspectives.

When I am not working, I'm thinking about work.


I want every student to feel comfortable and confident to come and talk with SUA and the office of the President. We serve y’all, so please feel free to contact us for any concerns or potential collaborations.

With gratittude and appreciation,

Ayo Banjo

“Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced”- James Baldwin


Instagram: @suaucsc | @ayosbanjo

Facebook: @ucsc.sua