Just when the heavy campaigning had died down after the first 2004 Presidential Debate, signs and banners appeared all over campus promoting the Student Government [SG] Senate candidates.
Approximately 30 candidates submitted applications to be put on the ballot for 13 empty positions ranging from freshman to commuter senators.
“We have a very productive legislature that has passed more than 20 bills already this year, and we’re looking forward to the new, enthusiastic additions the election will bring to the senate,” Vance Aloupis, SG President, said.
The Senate works as the legislative body of the government by discussing and passing bills proposed by the other branches of SG. Academic Affairs, Budgetary Review, Public Relations and University Affairs make up the different committees of Senate, through which each senator attempts to best represent his or her constituents.
This governing body not only provides a method for voicing student opinion on campus, but also gives participants an opportunity to experience an invaluable leadership experience – not to mention the fact that it’s an honor to be elected by one’s peers to represent them for the year to come.
“My experience is my strongest asset,” Billy Bludgus, senior senator-elect, said. “Over the past three years, I have been able to learn from other student leaders and from my own experiences with student leadership, and because of this experience I believe I have become a strong and efficient member of Student Government and UM on the whole.”
“I am focused on maximizing the quality of our education and representing my class by being accessible through open forums such as the website I created to go along with my campaign,” Rosie Miller, freshman senator-elect, said.
Campaign methods included banners all over the campus, signs, flyers, T-shirts and buttons. Gabriel Trujillo, Eaton senator-elect, went so far as to use Facebook, an online networking community, to win his position as a write-in candidate.
The candidates worked hard to promote themselves as the best people for the positions, but what were voters looking for?
“I’m basing my vote on how the person expressed their position to me,” Taneille Clouden, freshman, said. “I want someone who is willing to communicate with those who are electing them so I know I can count on them when issues come up.”
Stacey Arnold can be contacted at