At 5 p.m. Thursday, the last polling station for the Student Government (SG) general elections will come down. At 11:59 p.m., online polls on SG’s website will close.
As SG election season comes to end, SG Supervisor of Elections Carson Sadro reflected positively on the turnout.
Monday’s voting had a huge turnout, she said. SG gave 1,000 shirts to students who came to the polling stations and voted. The next couple of days slowed down at the polling stations, picking up a bit during Bull Market on Wednesday.
“It was a way larger turnout than I would’ve expected because we also can’t even see the people who are just online voting at home,” Sadro said. “To see 1,000 voters come out in person on the first day was amazing.”
During elections, voting stations gave out free donuts in the morning and free pizza in the afternoons to those who voted.
Sadro encourages student to vote and get involved with the political process at USF.
“We’re electing the next student body president who’s going to have a big say in the student’s voice — representing them with the Board of Trustees, potentially, and communicating with Dr. (Judy) Genshaft,” she said.
“… The senators represent the students when it comes to funding organizations, when it comes to writing legislation… and if the students want their voices heard then they need to come out and vote.”
Running for president and vice president are Chris Griffin and Alec Waid; Michael Malanga and Taylor Sanchez; and Nicole Hudson and Amanda Hill.
Senators are organized into albums on the SG Facebook page.
As far as campaigning goes, Sadro said the style may have changed but magnitude is aligned with previous years. She feels that presidential and vice presidential candidates really put themselves out there and interacted with the students.
She has also found the senate candidates quite active in their campaigns.
Concern over senate candidates offering food or other incentives to students in exchange for their vote has surfaced to some degree, but Sadro can’t say anything about that unless there is a grievance.
Handing out food and such should not be used to guarantee a vote, but it can be used to start a conversation.
“I’ve already reminded the candidates several times throughout the election process to make sure that they’re remaining in compliance with the rules,” Sadro said.
“The one thing we don’t want to see happen is we don’t want to see candidates trying to coerce the students and that’s a major violation if that happens and if the court finds that a candidate did that.”
Announcement of election results will take place on Friday at noon. Currently, the location is set for MSC 4200. Sadro said this may be subject to change and if it does, a notification will go out on social media. The event is open to the public.