(From The Campus Lantern – April 9th, 2015)
Elections for Eastern’s Student Government Association (SGA) are taking place now through April 22. SGA is looking for committed, professional, and analytical students to join the senate. It is required that SGA senators have a GPA of 2.5 or higher. Any class standing, both underclassmen and upperclassmen, can run for SGA. This year, in order to best represent Eastern and to diversify the mentalities that contribute to the senate, SGA wants to reach areas of campus that may never have considered running for senate positions before.
SGA serves as the voice for all students on campus and prides itself in being an inclusive and welcoming group. Executive board officers are elected annually by the student body, and all senators must run for re-election through the student body each academic year.
Each SGA senator is required to attend general board meetings on Mondays at 3:00 PM. Members are allowed to leave for classes at 4:00 PM if need be. Senators must also complete two office hours in the SGA Suite, located in the lower level of the Student Center. These office hours are not meant to be a burden to the senator, but instead serve as a way to connect with other students who may be in the SGA Suite.
In addition, each senator is required to serve on a standing committee as well as an external committee where they will interact with administrators and faculty. Standing committees are located within SGA, and include Internal (which deals with SGA affairs, such as coordinating teambuilding programs), Student Issues (which deals with solving concerns that affect the student body, such as food in the dining hall or keeping tuition costs down), Public Relations (which deals with promoting SGA and the other clubs and organizations on campus), and Budget and Management (which deals with managing the budgets of the clubs and organizations at Eastern). Examples of external committees include, but are not limited to, the Curriculum Committee, the First Year Program Committee, and Support Services Committee.
There will be fourteen open senator positions this round of elections. Ten senator positions are held open for fall elections to reserve spots for incoming freshmen and transfer students, as well as upperclassmen who would like to run. Students have until April 12 at 11:59 PM to fill out applications to be a part of SGA. Applicants must include a short personal statement explaining why they would best represent Eastern’s student body and a professional picture. The application can be found online at www1.easternct.edu/studentactivities/sga/elections.
Applicants will be nominated at the April 13 SGA meeting. Once nominated, applicants can start the campaigning process to gain votes. The official campaigning period will take place from the day of nominations through April 22. Students running for SGA must follow a set of campaign conduct guidelines, including only posting flyers and promotional material on authorized bulletin boards on campus and not being derogatory towards any other candidate, among other guidelines. Applicants will be emailed the complete list of campaign guidelines once their application is submitted.
The voting period will take place online from April 20 through April 22. Winners will be determined by majority vote. If there are no irregularities after 72 hours of the winners being determined and notified, the elections will be official and valid. Any violations, including not following the campaign guidelines, will be investigated by members of the SGA Elections Committee at their discretion.
“SGA offers an incredible opportunity for individuals to develop as informed leaders at Eastern, members of SGA have the ability to make significant impacts on the culture of our campus,” stated Matthew Hicks, the current President of SGA.
If you have any more questions about SGA, the elections process, or if you just have comments about Eastern in general, SGA can be reached by email at SGA@my.easternct.edu. SGA can be found on Twitter and Instagram with the username @SGAEastern, and on Facebook at “Eastern SGA.” Senators are usually located in the SGA Suite at all times of day, so students can stop by to talk about SGA anytime.
SGA meetings are Mondays at 3:00 PM in room 107 of the Student Center. Students are welcome to come to meetings to share their voice with the senate and to ask any questions they may have.
Good luck to all students who will be running this election period! Students who are not running: Be on the lookout for campaign posters and be sure to check your email and vote to pick your student body representatives between April 20 and April 22!