Isn’t it All Just a Popularity Contest?
Ding. Just hours into the first day of campaigning, us first-years receive notifications on our phones. We have follow requests from those campaigning for ASCMC student government positions: Austin Topham, Desmond Mantle, Sarah Simionas, Colin Sam, Julia Schulman, and Maureen Tchatchoua. After some mild stalking on our parts, we hit accept.
Accepted. From social media platforms, we begin learning more about these candidates: what stance are they campaigning from, what they are planning for the coming year, and most importantly, what they will do for us.
When the time comes to vote, however, does all this even matter? Friends vote for friends. Classmates vote for classmates. WOAmies vote for WOAmies. Teammates vote for teammates. In the end, the person with the biggest social circle typically wins. It’s not a rule of law, but typically, if one individual is involved in a multitude of organizations and clubs more so than other individuals, he or she will most likely receive the most support. This type of blind support is problematic for our student body because it can at times overlook the person most qualified. Does your candidate have the skill set to handle the position they are running for? Do they believe in the same issues as you?
On the other hand, is being involved in different organizations and being voted for that reason a bad thing? It indicates that a person is more involved on campus, and more aware of what the school and the students need.
In the end, research is needed to make an educated decision, and I trust the students of CMC to have made those educated decisions. People who didn’t know enough about the candidates didn’t vote. People who did vote didn’t vote for their friends because they were promised pizza parties and movie nights. When the “popularity” statement is made, it can be interpreted that the wrong candidate has won. That is not the case here. We simply cannot tell until due time has passed.
What we do know right now is that Colin Sam, our first-year president, has experience, is open to ideas and is realistic about what we can actually accomplish. To ensure a successful first year, however, the process is not over once votes are submitted. Ultimately, it is not just the the class president’s responsibility, but also our responsibility to provide feedback, pitch ideas, and participate. The goal here is to create an inclusive, unified community for the class of 2023. Thus, reach out to Colin at firstname.lastname@example.org or to any member of ASCMC to create an inclusive community and have a successful first year at CMC.