Elections for Southern’s Student Association will be held next semester, but the dates have been moved back a week. This change in schedule also affects related events such as the candidate’s speeches.
Dennis Negron, vice president for Student Development, is one of the administrators in charge of making sure the elections run smoothly. He said there are two main reasons the elections were pushed back, one of them being the inability to keep up election awareness.
“I was afraid [of] having students at home and not having all of this in front of them,” Negron said. “… Every medium that we use, we try to bombard them with, ‘Hey, it’s election season coming up. Are you still thinking about it?’”
The other reason for the change is the additional week of Winter Break, which would’ve caused the elections and campaigns to occur during the first few weeks of school.
“That means there would be even one less week for students to apply, get their [candidate] applications in, and then actually start getting a campaign going,” Negron said. “So we figured, because we couldn’t promote it, and because students would have one less week to actually get their campaigns together, it was wise to postpone the elections.”
The new timeline starts with the deadline for applications on Feb. 11, with final vetting of candidates occurring on Feb. 15. All candidates that have been vetted will go through orientation on the Feb. 16, and the election speeches will happen during convocation on Feb. 18. The press conference will occur on Feb. 23, right before the elections on Feb. 25.
Negron said to be vetted, there are three requirements that must be met to qualify.
“We’d look at GPA, length of time that they’ve been at Southern (at least one semester), and citizenship (student conduct),” Negron said.