Student Body President Elections. For many people, this phrase brings back horrible memories of superficial high school elections in which the pretty girl won every year despite the fact that no one actually knew what their student government did.
At USF, some people might say that Student Government (SG) elections are still a popularity contest, and Greeks seem to be the only ones competing.
While that may be the way it appears every year, it is a totally unjust assumption. In any case, students should vote for candidates based on the issues, not on perceived popularity.
As a voting member of the USF Board of Trustees and the Florida Student Association Board of Directors, the Student Body President is supposed to represent the student body and help make decisions that affect students’ University experiences.
When there is discussion about raising tuition, the Student Body President is out there fighting to keep tuition affordable for all students. This matter is especially important now. With an insufficient summer 2009 class schedule, many students may be staying here longer than they planned.
SG is also in charge of how the $11-million budget is used each year. If students need funding for their clubs or student organizations, they must go through SG. It is nearly impossible for students not to be affected by some administrative decisions during their time at USF, so they may want to take interest in what those decisions are and who is making them.
Students should not elect someone to such an important position based solely on popularity, which seems to be the tradition. Most often, the Greek community is most prevalent in SG, and in the SG candidate pool. If people have ever been to SG or CAB events, they have noticed that almost everyone at these events is involved in Greek Life. It should not be that way.
I am in no way blaming the Greeks for the student leadership monopoly they seem to have. In fact, I place the blame completely on the non-Greeks. The problem on this campus is that most people have written SG off as another Greek organization.
For those who see the situation that way, they need to grow up.
Students need to take some pride in this University and in their educations. They owe it to themselves to look up the SG candidates just as they would those in a national election. As universities’ budgets are being slashed more and more each day, students need to elect someone who will stand up for them.
Whether the issue is more summer classes, beer at Beef ‘O’ Brady’s or longer library hours, it’s important that students make informed decisions and vote for the candidate who best represents them.