SA should do more to recruit candidates

The Student Association should have done more to recruit candidates for this year’s executive elections.

Executive elections will decide the SA’s president, vice president, treasurer and student trustee. Students must attend a candidates’ meeting, fill out a registration packet and get 400 signatures from fee-paying students to run in the executive elections. All of that is stated in the SA bylaws, but other than that there isn’t much advertisement of what a student must do to run in the elections.

Since at least fall 2012, every SA president has been a part of a Greek organization. Joe Palmer, SA director of Public Affairs, said the SA advertises the elections within organizations that have been involved with the SA, which usually leads to more Greek participation.

Openings in candidate positions were primarily advertised by word of mouth, Palmer said. If the SA were to do more with recruiting candidates there would be a more diverse group of students who are involved in other organizations. This would help the SA represent the needs of all types of students.

Although recruitment for elections didn’t start as early as the SA would have liked, SA election commissioner David White said he thinks it was advertised fairly well through social media.

But, based on the Northern Star’s observations, the SA posted only once on Facebook about candidates’ meetings, which students must attend if they wish to run, the morning of the first meeting. The only post about the candidates’ meetings on the SA’s Twitter account was a retweet from the Northern Star regarding elections.

The SA should have done more to promote this opportunity to students since they are eligible to be candidates as long as they are fee-paying students.

White said the SA started advertising candidate positions one week before the start of the candidates’ meetings.

That is unacceptable because it doesn’t give the advertisements time to reach a large amount of students.

“We are looking more into the future … . We’re just trying to make sure that we get the word out much earlier than we did in past years,” White said. “… Just try and bring more potential candidates out and about.”

It’s great the SA is planning for the future, but it should have started advertising earlier and more often through social media.

The SA needs to do more to recruit a diverse group of students to run in elections. They can hang posters on campus or send emails to students. Relying on word of mouth and social media isn’t enough, and will not help with electing the best candidates to represent the student body.