Fifty-six students are vying for positions in the Student Association elections, 81 percent more than competed last year.
More students were granted the opportunity to pursue SA office this year because of a recent change to the Joint Elections Committee charter eliminating the signature collection requirement once necessary for candidacy. In total, 56 people are running, compared to 31 last year.
Members of the SA said the reason for the elimination of the signatures was that students who think they can make a difference by participating in the SA will jump more quickly into a campaign knowing that they do not need to approach voters for signatures.
Joint Elections Committee Chair Patrick Rizk said that his organization’s goals remain the same regardless of the number of candidates.
“No matter the number or field of candidates, the JEC stands firm in its responsibility to ensure that the rules are followed and that the election process is carried out smoothly and in a timely manner,” Rizk said.
Regardless of the increase’s impact on the mechanics of election components like postering and debates, executive vice presidential candidate Jason Lifton said he is pleased to see the widening pool of candidates.
“It is amazing that there are so many candidates running for different SA positions,” he said. “I think that it is great that so many people are eager to get excited in our Student Association and get involved on campus. With such a broad range of candidates, students will really have the ability to pick the candidate that they think will best represent them.”