By JONATHAN POLSON
Student voting for the 2012 Student Government Association (SGA) elections began Sunday night and will continue to run through Thursday, March 1.
Students are able to vote via electronic ballots sent through UMW emails, or by paper ballots available in the Student Activities and Engagement (SAE) office in the basement of Seacobeck Hall. Voting runs until 4:00 p.m. on Thursday.
Positions voted on included SGA President and Vice President, Judicial Review Board President and Vice President, Honor Council President, and SGA Finance Community.
The elections determine who will serve in these positions in the 2012-2013 school year.
Candidates have been working to make their campaigns prevalent throughout campus. Many candidates have utilized social media to spread their name and promote voting amongst students.
“Personally, I campaigned mostly through Facebook and Twitter,” said Kaitlyn Crotty, a candidate for Honor Council president. “I believe the elections are going well and everyone running has really gotten the word out there about voting.”
Current SGA President, Rob Belcourt, is running unopposed for SGA Vice President. “This has allowed me to use my current position as President to help spread the word about voting,” he said.
Belcourt says that SGA has worked to become more visible on the Internet this past year in an effort to connect with the UMW community. “We have created several social networking sites on Facebook and Twitter.”
Those running for SGA President are current SGA Vice President and junior Monique dela Cruz, Junior Student Senate Vice President Jeremy Thompson, and Junior Marco Montero.
Thompson said he relied more on “face-to-face interaction.”
“We knocked on doors and spoke to people,” said Thompson.
He said he believes this is how SGA should work with students. “[I] want to increase communication in our school to make students aware of the issues.”
Thompson hopes to increase student involvement with SGA. He said that his campaign slogan, “Your Voice, Your Vote, You are the SGA,” was his way of stating his desire to increase student communication with the SGA if he is elected.
Dela Cruz was elected to SGA vice president in January’s special elections. She has filled many SGA positions here at UMW, and she worked on SGA’s strategic plan with Belcourt over winter break.
“I have no interest in politics at all,” says dela Cruz, “my involvement in SGA is solely founded on my love for the school.”
Dela Cruz says that one of her main goals, if elected, will be to improve community relations.
“We hosted a town hall meeting last week. If elected I can promise that I will finish the work that I have started,” she said.
Montero said his campaign has been an enjoyable experience so far.
“The support I am receiving from my fellow peers has been great.,” Montero said.
Montero currently serves the SGA Student Senate as the Diversity and Unity Coordinating Chair. He is a part of the Master Plan Steering Committee. The committee is made up of faculty and students who meet to discuss ways to improve the UMW community.
Montero said he feels connected with the student body and the concerns they may have. “Your feedback matters to me. If elected, I will make sure each and every individual’s voice is heard.”
SAE will announce the election results on Thursday, March 1 at 9:00 p.m.