I don’t know about you, but personally, I’m tired of candidates for UTM elections tossing flyers and pamphlets in my face.
Yes, I get it. You’re “lobbying” and “fighting” and “increasing” and “decreasing” and “fighting back” and you’re doing it all for me! Thank you. And I understand that maybe you are trying to make a change to better campus life at UTM. But from the average UTM student’s point of view, you’re making all of these claims with no results. How many elections have been held at UTM, and how many changes have I been able to see? Are you really running for an election to better campus life, or do you just need a role to add to your resume?
When I’ve asked candidates who are running for something like Governing Council, or Academic Affairs Committee, or Board of Directors, or even some clubs and groups on campus, most have been able to tell me what their role will encompass. Some have been able to tell me all of their platforms and why they should be elected. But rarely have any been able to tell me how they plan to execute their goals. I kid you not, I have heard candidates say they don’t know, or ask me what I meant by “how?”
I met a candidate last semester who was running for Governing Council. My friend and I were bombarded by this candidate at the pub, in the library, and inside the Davis building. The candidate was unable to clearly tell us how they planned to execute their platforms – just kept repeating their name and asking us for ours, and simply kept telling us to vote. The sad part is, we actually wanted to know what their role would be and how they would accurately represent us on the Governing Council. And on any occasion that we saw this candidate, we never got a proper response.
And the part I’m most curious about is the how aspect of it all. I’m sure that all of these candidates who run for elections during elections season at UTM have worthy talking points, but it’s about taking the time to tell UTM students why it matters to vote, specifically why it matters to vote for them. I see hallways plastered with posters telling me to vote, I see candidates gathering armies of people to promote themselves in the hallways, but I don’t see any action besides being given a card with a Facebook link telling me where the voting polls are.
So, this elections season, I challenge candidates to take the time and tell the average UTM student how they plan to carry out their platforms (if that average student is willing to listen). To not just shove cards in our faces and say “Vote for me!” and repeat their name to anyone who will listen, but to let us know why electing them is important, what their role encompasses, and that their platforms are reasonable and acquirable.
To UTM students, I challenge you to ask the how’s and the why’s to each candidate (and listen for an answer) so that our student body can have representatives that will actually represent us and aim to better our campus. I ask you to do some research and get background information about elected groups on campus. And to strengthen our knowledge, and to exercise our right to vote on candidates we all choose.
What are your thoughts on the campaigning at UTM?