Freshmen senators elected, five seats now open

For the first time in Student Government Association’s history, six freshmen were elected into senate positions instead of five.
The situation occurred after a two-way tie for the last of five freshmen senate seats after last week’s freshmen elections.

The extra senate seat was available due to a shortage in senate members for this fall semester, said SGA President Erik Pederson.

In the typical event of a tie, the final decision as to who will win the seat is determined by SGA’s Judicial Council, who make their decision based on each candidate’s past experiences and qualifications.

However, according to Pederson, the current availability of open seats in the senate allowed an extra candidate to be accepted into a senate position after approval from the Judicial Council.

“I am not exactly sure why we have so many open seats this semester,” Pederson said about the high number of vacancies. “But this is not usual.”
“We have recently had some members with course conflicts,” Pederson said. “I guess they had too much on their plates.”

According to Pederson, after instating the freshmen senators, there are still currently five vacant senate seats and one Judicial Council seat. These vacancies are due to the resignation of three senate members from their positions over the summer, the transfer of two senate members to other universities and a decision by the Judicial Council member to leave SGA to work on other political projects.

SGA will be accepting applications to fill the remaining seats. Applications can be picked up in the SGA office or Dean of Students office and returned before 4:30 p.m. Friday.

Freshmen election winners include Tanner Elrod, Julia Steffen, Kristian Johnson, Justin Wynne, Zackary Drake and Patrick Reagan. All six winners were sworn in as official SGA senators during the Sept. 10 meeting, helping to fill the gap in a smaller than normal SGA.
Two resolutions were also read during this week’s meeting including the topics of declassification of professor evaluations to students prior to course registration and the transfer of departmental printing services to Business Operations and Auxiliary Services.
The content of both resolutions was discussed by SGA members during the meeting and will be voted on during the Sept. 17 meeting.