Delta College is in the middle of election season.
No, the GOP presidential candidates are not visiting the college.
Rather, the Associated Student Body Government (ASBG) elections are approaching, with April 30 slated as the first day of voting.
Not that you’d realize it by looking at the campus.
In the Shima courtyard, hanging from a clothesline, is the single piece of advertising on campus related to the elections.
Just one piece of paper, with a handwritten notice encouraging students to apply for ASBG positions.
One piece of paper, put up only days before the application deadline.
One piece of paper on a campus serving thousands of students.
By this time last year, the 2011 ASBG elections were already in full swing. Candidates had signs up on bulletin boards for weeks leading up to the elections.
People were passing out business cards and flyers to encourage students to vote for their candidate.
We have to wonder, what happened?
Where is the election season fervor?
While it is true that the turnout for ASBG elections has been low in recent years, that doesn’t explain why the election committee seems to have almost completely given up publicizing the elections this semester. The only addition to that single piece of paper in recent days are some “I’m a leader” flyers showing up on campus.
The election committee – and the ASBG in general – should be doing all they can to advertise the upcoming election.
Does the ASBG election matter as much as the November election for state and federal governments? No.
But that doesn’t mean that it’s meaningless. The ASBG affects many aspects of a student’s experience at Delta.
We know the ASBG has established scholarships. The group has offered services, such as wireless Internet, to students. ASBG also funds food and entertainment for College Hour, as well as dealing with administration if students file grievances.
Yet all this is meaningless if the students are not aware of how to get actively involved in voting and campus politics.
If the campus body isn’t aware of the elections, students can’t sign up to run for open positions. If the campus body isn’t aware of elections, students can’t vote for who represents them in the student government.
We hope the ASBG will take steps to correct the lack of publicity for elections, and we urge whoever is on ASBG next year to begin publicizing elections earlier.
As for the rest of the student population? Remember to vote when April 30 rolls around. It’s important.