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Editorial: Voter turnout on the way up with room to improve

With voting completed for Student Body
Officer elections, the voting turnout of 1,091 votes
was the highest in the last three years. Last year,
a total of 963 votes were cast; in a greater margin,
only 536 votes were cast in 2017.
The increase in votes this year is a positive,
however, there is still a lot to be improved with
Student Sentate elections.
The process of the elections prevents a large
amount of students from voting and does not
result in educated voters.
The last two years have seen a spike in voting.
However, in the long run, it can be found that
voting turnout fluctuates. The total votes in 2016
were 1,694. 2015 had 1,393 and 2014 had 592.
Students are only given a two-day window to
vote for Student Body Officers and the only way
to vote is through a Google Form sent to students’
email. Students who do not check their email
frequently or who do not prioritize the ballot may
not be able to cast their vote in this window.
For the future, it may be wise to extend the
voting period. This would provide candidates to
invest in heavy campaigning and educating voters
before they make a decision. The student debate
is one way for students to get to know candidates,
but it is not a popular event to attend.
In regards to the means of casting the ballot,
Student Senate should look into setting up
computers in the student center, and persuading
students to take a minute to vote. This would also
be an ample opportunity for candidates to meet
with constituents and contribute to increasing the
voter turnout.
In addition to the improvements that could
be made in regards to the amount of votes cast,
voters should be able to gather more information
to make more informed decisions.
It’s also important that Student Senate spreads
the word about voting. This is their time of year,
where they are one of the more important topics
on campus.
There also is not much notice as to when
the election is happening. Due to the lack of
communication from Student Senate to the
student body, there are not enough votes to truly
represent the opinions of campus.
Why can’t there be an entire week to vote
instead of two days? Why can’t there be a second
debate the night before the election results end
that puts to rest any indecisiveness student voters
have?
New strategies relating to communication
with the student body must be increased to
enhance the process of choosing the correct
Student Body Officers.

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The Scout is published by members of the student body of Bradley University. Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of the University.