Time runs short for SA Senate candidates

By Matt Gilbert

Students who wish to play a larger role in deciding how the campus is run by participating in student government are running out of time to turn in petitions for the upcoming SA Senate elections.

In order for a student to have a name placed on the official ballot, any prospective SA Senate candidate must turn in a petition signed by at least 200 NIU students by 4:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 10, at the Student Association office, Holmes Student Center, south entrance second floor.

This semester, all 40 Senate seats will be up for grabs. So far the SA office has signed out 67 petition forms. SA Vice President Dave Gonzales said he has received a verbal commitment from at least 50 people who will be running, including about five senators from last year running for re-election. Three candidates have already turned in completed petitions.

The elections will be held all day on Sept. 14 and 15.

About 40 people attended a meeting held last Tuesday for students interested in running for the SA Senate.

According to Gonzales, “(the meeting) just covered some of the election procedures, like the dos and don’ts of campaigning on campus.”

SA election commissioner Laura Niesman told prospective candidates she intends to see that the elections are run with “fairness and facility,” meaning they should be fair and run smoothly.

“There was a sizable number that showed up at the candidates meeting. A lot of young people are showing up. That’s very encouraging.” Niesman said.

SA officers have stressed this term they would particularly like younger students, including freshmen and sophomores, to run for the SA Senate. Early entry into student government means greater continuity and lower turnover.

SA president Abe Andrzejewski has stated in the past that the danger exists of administration officials and faculty members taking advantage of the naivete of an ever-changing student government.

Gonzales said students who missed the meeting would not be at any real disadvantage if they chose to run now. “I would more than encourage them to run. If people have any concerns this is a very good opportunity to voice their opinion,” He said.

“Not only are they expressing their opinion but I’m sure the concerns that many other students have, but they just don’t know how to voice them,” he added.

Petition forms are available in the SA office. The forms also list rules for campaigning and qualifications and requirements candidates must meet.