Priscilla Joung, USC News | Posted: February 3, 2020 at 12:45am
Whether it be in the UCC Atrium, in front of the Social Sciences building, or at Alumni Hall, the campaign signs and booths say it all: the Western student community has switched into high gear for the USC Elections.
With voting open this morning, USC President Bardia Jalayer speaks to why students should participate in the elections.
“It’s important to get oriented with the USC as soon as possible because there are a lot of cool opportunities, from workshops, to clubs, support systems, programs like Orientation Week, and even the ability to affect change on campus,” urges President Bardia Jalayer.
“They’re all quite vital to the campus life and if nothing else, some of your ancillary fees go towards it, so it’s important to really know where your money’s going and engage with that process,” he said.
Clearly outlined in Jalayer’s statement, it is evident that the average Western student comes to naturally utilize the USC’s many programs throughout their life as an undergraduate student.
Students who have gotten a study snack from the Spoke, grabbed lunch with a friend at the Wave, or purchased some Western merch from the Purple Store are also utilizing the plethora of additional services made possible by the USC.
Jalayer additionally brings light to the advocacy needed to better the Western student experience.
“From my second to third year, we got a reading week, and I didn’t realize that the advocacy came from the USC. Even now I have friends and roommates who are loving the self-reported absences, and so it’s those little things that you don’t realize the USC has a hand in,” said Jalayer.
Lastly, Jalayer weighed in on the work the USC does with organizations outside of the campus by illustrating the effort needed in maintaining the bus pass – a service incredibly essential to Western University students.
“Students don’t realize how close we were to losing that. The bus passes cost students about $900, and we were able to keep it just below $300 through collective bargaining that we do. That’s not really something that students realize every time they’re getting on the bus.”
The USC evidently circulates large amounts of effort into creating change on campus, so it’s of interest to the Western student to get involved in seeing through what they feel best suits their needs as a student.
The most direct method in doing exactly that? Voting in the Spring Elections.
Polls open, #Five2Vote campaign encourages election participation
With the campaign period coming to a close, polling opens at 8:00am on Monday, February 3 and closes at 8:00pm on February 4th. All voting takes place online at WesternVotes.com, where students will log in with their UWO credentials.
For the first time, the USC is partnering with Western through the #Five2Vote campaign to encourage faculty to provide students with five minutes to vote online during instructional time on Monday and Tuesday.
Eligible voters will receive a link to their UWO email from Simply Voting on Monday morning and can vote anytime before Tuesday at 8:00pm.
“I highly encourage students to carefully consider the platforms of the candidates before they vote so that they can make an informed decision,” added Jalayer as a final statement.
For more information on platforms, students can visit candidates in the UCC Atrium, engage with their various social media platforms, or check westernvotes.com for candidate bios and links to platforms!