Photo Credit: Elliott Stallion
By Gries Torres
After the spring semester Student Government Association (SGA) elections failed to generate enough interested candidates to fill the required number of seats in the college senate, a special election had to be scheduled for this October to fill six vacancies in the body.
The required amount of senators in the SGA is 32 but only 27 students submitted petitions and ran last spring. One student dropped out of the campaign so only 26 candidates remained.
Last April, everybody who ran for a senator-at-large was elected to the senate because they basically didn’t have anyone to run against, said Vice President of Student Development Vincent Banrey.
According to the SGA Communications Council President Sury Valdez there are six departmental senators in the SGA, who represent the department of their major as opposed to the senators at large.
In an effort to bring in more students to become members of York College Senate, the SGA held two mandatory candidates meetings and an open house in 1G04 on Sept 12.
The two mandatory candidates meeting for senators took place in room 3H11 at 12 noon and at 5pm. Approximately five students attended each meeting. Each student who attended the meetings is running as senator-at-large which means that they will represent York College as a whole not their departments.
“The meetings were determined by the Board of Election Committee,” said Sury Valdez the communications council president. “This is a special election so it was said to be done as soon as possible.”
At the meetings, the candidates were given the nomination petition sheets they are supposed to fill out with at least 80 valid signatures, but participants are given room to have more signatures. They have to return the signed petitions to the Office of Public Safety, and then the Elections Committee will review each petition to determine the eligibility of each candidate to campaign.
Charles Kellerman, a recently elected senator and a Social Work major said there were approximately 34 people at the mandatory meeting he attended last spring, but only 20 people looked serious about it.
“I think the awareness went down,” said Kellerman. “That’s why we are doing these meetings early in the semester because if we do this later during the year we might not get many people.”
SGA members spent all night decorating room 1G04 for the open house, according to Valdez.
The event was attended by members of the club and students who already attended the mandatory candidate meetings.
“Compared to last year we have a strong team that comes up with ideas,” said Valdez. She hopes that all the effort the SGA is putting into bringing in students will pay off.
The special elections for will be held at Oct. 19 in the Atrium.