Student government elections to be held later this month

Student Government, Inc.will hold elections for the 2009-2010 academic year on March 23 and 24.

The elections will be contested by two full tickets for the third consecutive year after failing to be fully contested in 2005 and 2006.

The V.I.S.I.O.N. ticket will be led by presidential candidate Chenele Francis while P.R.I.D.E. will feature presidential candidate Patrick McBurney.

There will also be one independent candidate, Donald Wiggins, who will run for the position of Sophomore Senator under the ticket name F.A.I.T.H.

The campaign season kicked off on Tuesday with the “Campus Tour” event, which gave candidates the opportunity to introduce themselves and their platforms to students.

“The candidates started out in the UC Commons, then moved to Marillac Terrace, and finally Montgoris Dining Hall,” said current SGI Secretary Dominc Baccala, who explained that the event was the first of its kind.

“It was something the current Elections Committee and Executive Board established as a kick-off to the election season,” he said. “It was sort of a meet and greet.”

The scheduled events of the campaign season will continue this Thursday with a debate in the Donovan Hall Community Room at 8:30 p.m. The second and final debate will take place on March 16 at 3:00 p.m. in the Little Theatre, and the candidates will introduce themselves before the Organizational Congress on March 18 in the UC Commons.

“There are a total of four official events,” Baccala explained, “but the candidates have the opportunity over the next four weeks to campaign across campus.”

Before the candidates could run for positions, they all had to take a test gauging their general knowledge of the operations and procedures of SGI and its various sub-committees, as well as the policies of Student Life.

“It’s important to know that [the candidates] have a good working knowledge of the organizations they’ll be working with,” Baccala said.

“In order to run, they have to pass the test.”

Baccala, who had to take and pass the test himself before running for his position, said that he found it to be challenging but fair.

“It’s not multiple choice, so you have to know the answers,” he said, adding that the tests are graded by Student Life to ensure that the process is unbiased.

“It gets you to do your own research and develop a well rounded understanding of the relevant information,” Baccala said.
Students will be able to vote on March 23 in Council Hall, March 24 in Marillac Hall or online either day on St. John’s Central.