SGA holds online elections

Here is an article on a online elections for which I was interviewed for the Spectator, the university student news paper.

Kate Gaulding

SGA election polls will open for senator candidates next Tuesday at midnight. Cody Guined, SGA president, said the polls will be open 24 hours online on the VSU web page. Only online voting will be available.

Ezra Freelove, assistant webmaster of Microcomputing and Network Services, said the CIO and CPO links on the VSU home page have been replaced with an SGA election link.

“This link will take students to more detailed instructions and a bigger link entitled GO VOTE,” he said. “The log-in will be their student ID number and pin.”

Once students have clicked on the GO VOTE logo, they will be presented with a list of candidates, Freelove said. The student can select one of these candidates and click on “vote.”

SGA held its first fall semester meeting Tuesday to discuss campaigning rules and available senator seats.

“Candidates may use flyers, sheet signs and posters,” Gerald Williams, assistant director of Student Life, said. “Candidates may also use general ways to campaign.”

Each senator must gather 50 VSU student signatures with student ID numbers, Guined said. Robin Vickery, director of Student Life, checks the student ID numbers to validate the students’ signature.

“That way nobody’s ID is compromised,” Guined said.

It costs $3 to run for senate and $5 to run for an executive office, Guined said.

Each senator must have a 2.0 GPA. Senators do not have to be full-time students.

About 34 individuals turned in candidate packets Monday by 3 p.m. in the SGA office. Six students did not qualify for candidacy due either to late admission, an inadequate number of signatures or signatures without ID numbers.

During the meeting, each qualified candidate stated the type of seat for which he or she is running.

“There are eight on-campus and eight off-campus seats,” Guined said. “There are 14 freshman seats, six or seven sophomore seats, 11 junior seats and 12 senior seats. Class is one student per every 200 students. Usually no one has enough time for graduate seats, so there are five seats set aside for graduate and doctoral students.”

Jason Lewis, SGA vice president, started out as a senator.

“We’re elected by students and we’re here for them,” Lewis said.

Senators write, propose and submit bills, Lewis said. Senators also serve as the liaison between students and administration.

“We’re the voice for the students,” Lewis said.

Last year, SGA held the Student Advisory Council conference at VSU.

“The Student Advisory Council interfaces with the Board of Regents,” Trish Taylor, senior secretary of Student Life, said.

SAC passes information and student concerns to the Board of Regents, Taylor said. SAC includes student representatives from each Student Government Association at every state college. Private colleges are not included.

Lewis said new SGA senators will be discussing issues such as another SAC conference, student parking and the possibility of a new football stadium.

“I’m looking forward to having a good team with me,” Lewis said.

SGA meetings are held in the Bio/Chem auditorium every Tuesday at 8 p.m.

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