Participation is key for shaping our future

The lack of student participation on campus has been getting hard to see lately. Organizations campus-wide have seen the negative consequences that stem from the obvious student apathy.

Whether it is a matter of people being “just too busy” or people thinking someone else might step up to the plate, we now have four uncontested individuals running for the student government executive board.  Student Senate could not get anything done at its latest meeting because it could not fill quorum, or the amount of members needed to be present to be able to vote.

That means four people who may or may not align with you and your values as a student will be running to represent you and hundreds of other students on this campus in the next year. Their ideas, whether good or bad, will not be challenged; their platforms will not be fought; their beliefs on how they plan on representing this school and the many faces that culminate here will not be brought into question because people decided that running for a student government seat just wasn’t important enough.

Guess what, it is.

Because when you allow the same people who have been on student government already and clearly agree with one another since there is never any debate at the meetings, you get outcomes like the approval of the panther statue that many expressed displeasure with on social media.

Being on student government would have given you the chance to say something about this, and potentially would have stopped it from being approved.

Of course we understand and respect those students who work three jobs, commute to and from campus, have children, have a million credit hours or who are genuinely busy and don’t have time for extra curricular activities. But what about the students who just go to classes, eat and hide in their dorms?

We know that student government isn’t a glamorous gig but that’s our point. Sure it’s not great, but you could have changed that. You could have made it better and gotten things done that can actually benefit this campus.

Despite the fact that all of the candidates for student government executive positions are running without an opponent, we still want students to vote thoughtfully and take the election seriously.

It is OK to vote no confidence in candidates you deem unfit to serve, if you truly feel that way.

Just because there is only one person running does not mean they are necessarily the best choice. If they are, vote for them.

Remember, these are people who are supposed to be representing you and your values. Keep that in mind when you vote.