While boisterous music filled the Bellevue College campus, a lengthy line of anxious students prepared to stuff their faces with free food stood in the courtyard last Thursday, April 26 for the ASG BBQ. Sure, the ASG loves to get everyone excited, united and fed, but there were other motivations behind this well planned event: To get students to vote for the candidates running for next year’s ASG.
There were some people who simply voted randomly, for whoever they thought were the cutest, or had the best picture in order to receive food, but there are much bigger reasons why students should participate in the election. Approximately 15 percent of BC student tuition goes into the ASG fund.
We’ve heard the promises to promote diversity, to maintain a healthy and fun learning environment and to emphasize inclusion, but the ASG officers do way more than that. (The ten different positions hold so much responsibility and many duties, such as managing finances, reviewing and authorizing charters for clubs and associations, advocating and increasing sustainability, raising awareness of extracurricular activities, bringing new technology to campus and tackling student issues.)
One of the most recent jobs of the ASG was to serve on the Board of Directors, meeting to allocate funds and evaluate budgets for clubs and programs. Fortunately, there were no budget cuts, and some programs were even granted a larger budget.
Sometimes a club or an association may violate a BC standard or practice. In that case, an ASG member has the ability to launch an investigation. The ASG will be open for students to help mediate problems and can also get as a bridge between students, faculty, staff and administrators. Vote for someone who you feel comfortable with handling these issues.
OK, let’s say you are just a commuter and leave school as soon as classes are over and have no involvement whatsoever with Student Programs. Well, ever gotten into a sticky situation and ended up with a parking ticket? Guess who will help you out? One of the ASG officers serves on the BC Traffic Court, and they will ensure your opinion is stated when you justify why you should not have to pay for the traffic citation you received on campus. I wouldn’t want to elect some random person who doesn’t know what they are doing or shares very different values to represent me.
Some of the current candidates stated in their platform that they will try to extend library hours to accommodate those with later classes. There are also plans to try to host more events, incorporating multiple clubs and associations to increase inclusion.
The bottom line is that the ASG has a huge influence on how your college dollars are used, as well as what gets accomplished and what doesn’t. I encourage you to take voting very seriously.
Voting for the candidates was launched on the day of the election kick-off and will end on Thursday, May 3. You may access the voting website by going to the BC website. Prior to voting, evaluate all of the candidates and what their plans are if elected. Get to know their personalities, values and if they are who you want representing you.
The winning candidates will be announced on May 4 by the current judicial board and will be posted online. Decrease the voting apathy and don’t leave the voting to others. Every vote counts, so if you have not already voted, get on it right now! Start getting to know your candidates now at http://studentweb.bellevuecollege.edu/asg/blog/2012/04/election-candidates.