Editorial: Why you need to vote

(H. Margaret Slye / Lariat)

Lariat Staff

Every year elections are held to elect a new board of student officers, to run student government at both Saddleback and Irvine Valley Colleges. Though an effort to advertise and promote candidates is made, many students seem uninterested.

However, more students should care and become involved in the voting process, because student government is at the center of student activities and has the power to make waves and enact important changes on campus.

“Student government should cater to the needs and interests of its main focus, students,” said Zachary Ho, vice presidential candidate and associate justice for the Associated Students of Irvine Valley College. “Whether through leadership opportunities or to simply let others become more involved with what IVC has to offer, student government should do so while fostering an open, honest and spirited environment.”

It’s important to vote for the officers that serve on Associated Student Government at Saddleback and ASIVC, because they are advocates for student interest and have the money to make changes.

From 2011 to 2012, Saddleback ASG worked with a budget of  $847,052, and used the funds for campus life ($205,490), co-curricular programs ($120, 419), student support ($168, 491), operational expenses ($109, 050) and contingency, allocation for anticipated mid-year requests and scholarships ($243, 602).
They work with a budget to provide students with activities, scholarships, programs and support. ASG puts their money where their mouth is, but if the student public doesn’t voice their demands or concerns,  ASG cannot accurately represent them. Voting is key to being more involved in the process of spending this money and having a collective student voice.

Sadly, many students don’t know that student government is valuable or does much for the school, so they don’t care about voting for the new officers.
“I don’t give two pennies about elections, especially something as mediocre as student elections,” Michael Sanchez, 19 said.

Students feeling apathetic about voting need to understand that ASG is responsible for more than they realize.

Anytime there is a blood drive, movie night, fundraiser, or an event in the quad, it is most likely put together by ASG.  According to their website, the student government, “plans, organizes, promotes, sponsors, and finances a comprehensive program of activities and services for all Saddleback College students.”
Saddleback and IVC students should vote in the upcoming elections, because ASG can bring student issues to the attention of higher-ups, and really make changes to campus life. Most importantly, ASG and ASIVC wield the money. Dan Deacon once said in reference to voting that “your apathy is their reward”, and it’s true. If students don’t tell their associated government what they want, how can ASG and ASIVC possibly make it happen?

The student elections this year will be held from April 23 to April 28 in front of the ASG office and Gaucho Lounge, SSC 211, and at other polling locations throughout campus.

 

For more information on Saddleback’s Associated Student Government:

http://www.saddleback.edu/asg/

For more information on the Associated Students of Irvine Valley College:

http://www.ivc.edu/student/asivc/Pages/default.aspx

To view the Saddleback events calendar:

http://www.saddleback.edu/studentdevelopment/calendar.html

To view the IVC events calendar:

http://www.ivc.edu/student/asivc/pages/calendar.aspx

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