Do you lay awake at night retweeting propaganda from your preferred presidential candidate’s official twitter account?
Do you ever stop in your tracks on the way to class because you realize the fate of the nation is literally in the hands of millions of millennials who might not show up to vote?!
If this sounds like you, even a little bit or not even at all, you’re probably aware of the dark cloud currently looming over us. That’s right collegiettes, it’s election season.
“But wait”, you cry into your computer screens while shoveling easy mac into your beautiful pie holes, “California doesn’t have primary elections for months and even school elections aren’t until April”. Well collegiettes, here’s where I tell you to open your perfectly winged eyeliner-lined eyes and see the world as it truly is. ASUSF Senate is having a special election THIS WEEK and NEXT WEEK and you absolutely, positively, must go and vote.
What’s a special election you ask? Is it just a regular election whose parents TOLD it, it was special just for like existing, despite the fact that it was totally mediocre and just like any other election? No. A special election is an election that is held outside of the standard election period. USF usually holds elections early in the fall semester and late in the spring semester but the results of the two items on this special election ballot will affect our regularly scheduled programming that is Spring Elections and so they have to be voted on A$AP Rocky.
The first item on the ballot is a Resolution to increase the student activity fee by ten dollars every year over the next three years. A representative from Senate states that this increase is necessary in order to maintain the current and growth level of services while keeping finances “out of the red”.
The second item on the ballot is a resolution to restructure ASUSF Senate membership. If passed, ASUSF Senate would restructure itself down to a total of eleven  senators, each one representing: The College of Arts and Sciences, the School of Management, the School of Nursing and Health Professions, the Freshman Class, the Sophomore Class, the Junior Class, the Senior Class, Students of Color, LGBTQ Students, International Students and Transfer Students.
The restructuring will displace one of the two senate representatives in each respective category except for On-Campus, Off-Campus, Students with Disabilities, and Non-traditional Age Student representatives which will be done away with altogether.
The executive cabinet of senate will also see restructuring if this resolution passes. The board currently seats 6; President, VP of Internal Affairs, VP of Business Administration, VP of Public Relations, VP of Mission, VP of Sustainability. Restructuring would include eliminating the positions of Finance, Mission and Sustainability. In their place would be two new positions; VP of Advocacy and VP of Finance.
Although this resolution calls for some serious downsizing, Laureano Figueroa, current president of ASUSF, says that the restructuring is necessary to increase efficiency and accountability of Senate.
“Many of the current representatives have overlapping duties and responsibilities which makes it difficult to get things done”, Figueroa explains, “…having less senators will increase the accountability for those who are in office”.
Figueroa also explains that some of the positions that are up for removal, like Students with Disabilities Representative and VP of Sustainability are simply outdated and while they were created at a time when they were needed, official departments ( like the Student with Disabilities Services or the Sustainability Department) now exist within USF.
One of the most important things about this election is that ASUSF Senate needs AT LEAST 20% of the student body to turn out to the polls (figuratively “turn out” because you can literally vote online in the comfort of your warm bed) in order for any resolutions to pass. If they don’t pass this time around, you may see these resolutions pop up again on your ballot later this Spring but if that’s the case, changes won’t be enacted until the following year. If they pass during this special election, it will make a huge difference in who and what we see on our ballots in a few months during the regularly scheduled elections.
Here at HC, we encourage everyone to exercise their right to vote and hope that every collegiette is making smart, informed decisions. If you would like to read more about ASUSF’s Special Election or read the resolutions, check out the links below. If you’re not still not sure if you should vote, we’ve also included a super official, professional and serious venn diagram questionnaire.
For anything and everything having to do with ASUSF: https://myusf.usfca.edu/student-life/sle/asusf-senate/legislation
Referendum to Restructure ASUSF Senate Membership: https://myusf.usfca.edu/sites/default/files/ASUSFResolution15-16-05_3.pdf