From Thursday to Saturday, 68.8 percent of the student body voted for class representatives, College Council (CC) officers, constitutional amendments and a college-wide referendum. Despite an early technical glitch, which temporarily inhibited access to the online ballot, voter turnout increased by 22.8 percent from last year’s special election.
High voter participation was crucial to the success of the CC spring term elections. Many students attended the “Civic Duty and Shake Your Booty” event in Goodrich Hall on Thursday, which featured live student performances, an open Goodrich tab, informational conversations and voting booths. The voting party also included a Snapchat filter, geared towards enticing students into exercising their political voices.
On Saturday night, the Elections Supervisory Committee announced the results in an all-campus email. In the contested race for CC co-presidents, Michelle Bal ’17 and Caitlin Buckley ’17 emerged victorious over the tickets of Jonathon Burne ’17 and Tyrone Scafe ’17 and that of Jonathan Linen ’17 and Frankie Mork ’17. Bal and Buckley’s platform of increased CC transparency, collaboration with Campus Safety and Security and emphasis on student wellness captured the most votes and earned them the opportunity to represent the student body as the heads of CC for the year.
Ava Anderson ’18 and Chetan Patel ’18, Wendy Suiyi Tang ’19, Ben Gips ’19, Allegra Simon ’18 and Alex Besser ’17, Michael Rubel ’19, Web Farabow ’18, and Rodsy Modhurima ’19 were voted to the positions of Vice President for Student Organizations, Community and Diversity, Student Affairs, Academic Affairs, Operations, Treasurer and Assistant Treasurer, respectively.
Representatives for each class year were also elected. The representatives for the Class of 2019 will be Luke Baumann, Justinas Banys, Bum Shik Kim and Moises Roman Mendoza. The representatives for the Class of 2018 will be Sam Alterman, Ned Lauber, Haley Lescinsky and Arielle Rawlings. The representatives for the Class of 2017 will be Annika Trapness, Hanson Koota, Lucas Elek and John Fives, with the latter two elected as write-in candidates. The representatives for the class of 2016 will be Marcus Christian, Noah Grumman, Sophia Wilansky and Alison Wu. The exact vote tallies are available on the CC website.
Two amendments to the CC constitution were also ratified with the approval of the majority of students who voted. The first amendment added a Vice President for Communications position and a parliamentarian position and the other changed gender pronouns in CC governing documents from she/he/his/her to they/theirs to be more inclusive and gender neutral.
Another important outcome of the election was the passage of the referendum to reform the Honor and Disciplinary Committee. The “8+4” referendum, widely publicized and discussed on campus in the days leading up to the election, states, “For each [Honor Committee] hearing, four rotating members – one from each class year – shall be randomly called upon to join the eight selected student members in the hearing as voting members.” The amendment was designed to bring more equity and transparency to the Honor Committee while familiarizing students with the inner workings of the hearings, which have recently increased to about 30 per year. The referendum passed by 89.9 percent.
The first CC meeting with the new council will take place Wednesday evening at 7:30 p.m. in Hopkins 001.