Elections can be an overwhelming experience, especially if you’re a new student. Fair warning: elections day is the most hectic day of the academic year. Campaigns will be showcasing their platforms, relentlessly, even when you tell them you’re not voting this year.
Students will be huddled in crowds, either chanting slogans or desperately trying to pass through barricades of people to get to classes. You’re going to be watching this wondering why you even stepped foot on campus on elections day. Don’t worry, elections can be as exciting as they are overwhelming, so try to make the best of it.
Seeing that the big day is approaching very soon, here are a few tips for new students (or continuing students if you’re still confused by the process) to go about elections day as smoothly as possible:
1. Check if your name is on the list of voters
To be eligible to vote, your name has to be present on the “Tentative List of Voters” which can be found on the Office of Student Affairs website under the “Elections” section.
2. Check for your voting center
Students are attributed to voting centers according to faculty. Check for your corresponding voting centers on the Office of Student Affairs website under the “Elections” section. Voting starts at 10 am and ends at 5 pm.
3. Have your ID with you
You will not be able to vote without your ID. Make sure your ID is with you on the day of elections to have access to the voting booths.
4. Be aware of the electoral law
As of last year, a proportional electoral law was instated in place of the majoritarian law used in previous years. The voting mechanism differs for USFCs and SRCs.
For USFCs: you vote for a list of names corresponding to a particular campaign, giving a preferential vote for one of the candidates. The number of USFC candidates varies per faculty.
For SRCs: you get to select the names you prefer out of the all the available candidates from the different campaigns. The number of SRC candidates varies depending on faculty and year.
5. Check the different platforms and vote wisely
Read the platforms of the different campaigns before heading to the voting booths. Being an informed voter is imperative. After all, you’re choosing the people who will represent you for the next year and make sure your demands are met. Go in knowing who you want to vote for and why you’re voting for them.