Click to read about the best places to eat on campus, freshman packing tips, and how to keep in touch with friends.

Students face polling problems

Student Government election officials have extended voting hours for the presidential race because of a Blackboard software crash Wednesday morning.

The Election Rules Commission met immediately and determined that extending the hours was the proper thing to do, said Supervisor of Elections Michael van Hoek.

Mobile polling stations located at Argos and Greek Village — which have been among the most popular locations  —  were unaffected by the outage, van Hoek said.

A Blackboard administrator posted a message on the site saying an error occurred overnight, making the system inaccessible from 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. This backed up the server, making it slow and irregular until 12:30 p.m., when the system was shut down for one hour to be rebooted.

Presidential candidate Ralph Reid said he was concerned about the malfunction.

“I couldn’t vote, and I’m a candidate,” he said.

Presidential candidate Christopher Cano said the voting issue could be a good sign.

“The fact that Blackboard crashed because too many people logged on leads me to believe that we’ll have a record turnout,” he said.

Other voting issues have arisen this week in addition to the Blackboard crash.

Students living in some off-campus apartment complexes, such as Campus Lodge, have not been able to access the ballot, Reid said.

He said he heard of students in different complexes with similar issues.

Van Hoek said students in these locations are not locked out of the ballot.

Each IP address is allowed up to five ballots, he said.

Internet users at apartment complexes like Campus Lodge operate on the same IP address, and Reid said he believes the voting was blocked after the initial five votes were cast.

Cano said one constituent called him and said she was not listed as a member of a college, so she could not vote.

Aaron Cronk, a senior environmental science major, said he wanted to vote only on the fees — not for a presidential candidate. However, when he attempted to vote, a screen popped up that said he had to vote for a presidential candidate to continue.

“I went to vote today through Blackboard and was disappointed that I would be forced to vote for a candidate,” he said.

He said that because of this, he did not vote.

“I believe the student body has a right of refusal to vote for any particular issue (or) position on a ballot,” he said. “This should not prevent someone from voicing their opinions on other matters, though.”

Cronk said he filled out a grievance form and has heard of other students with the same problem.

Voting continues today from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. The results will be announced at a social in the Oak Room of the Marshall Student Center from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Presidential candidates Christopher Leddy and Juan Soltero could not be reached for comment.