COLUMN: SG needs your vote, but make sure it’s an informed one

Student Government makes decisions that impact you, so make your candidate pick on Tuesday or Wednesday.


Elisabeth Gaffney, Staff Writer

Just like any other university, FAU has its flaws. As students, we know this more than anyone. Sometimes even the smallest things can be extremely frustrating.

These flaws are why Student Government (SG) exists.

SG is here for us. They understand. They are our voice, and they have more authority to do something about these flaws when we, as individuals in a sea of over 30,000 students, can’t. This is why voting is so important.

Elections for student body president, vice president, and campus governors are Tuesday, Feb. 21 and Wednesday, Feb. 22, and I am urging you to vote, which you can do through Owl Central

The SG Chief Financial Officer Reilly Bridgers spoke at last Thursday’s Town Hall meeting about student fees. He said that SG starts with $9 million, but only a fraction of that money can be put toward initiatives, clubs, and events on campus.

Why is this important to mention? Because SG leaders have the opportunity to allocate those funds toward initiatives that they decide are most important, which impacts all of us.

You may not notice the work SG does, but you would definitely notice if they weren’t there.

Just in the past school year, SG has implemented many programs, such as Owls Ending Hunger, Parking Citation Forgiveness, and more recently, a textbook relief program. They have also installed free menstrual products in residence halls, and free Grammarly Premium.

These programs were created because certain SG leaders felt they were important. Depending on who is representing the student body, we can have another year like this, or the opposite.

In 2021, former SG President Maxwell Simonson made a controversial TikTok that had students reeling. The TikTok depicted Simonson taking his dog out of the fridge, with the caption “When your Chinese friend forgets his leftovers at his house.” It was posted four days before the election, though no one had caught wind of it until after his election, for which he ran unopposed.

Many Asian students were offended by the video and felt they were being misrepresented by Simonson, which could have been avoided if students had done their research on the presidential candidate before the election.

So please, do your research and make an informed decision. Read the UP’s recent articles about the candidates, which you can find here and here. Ask questions, find out what they want to do for us, and vote.

Elisabeth Gaffney is a staff writer for the University Press. For more information regarding this article or others, you can email [email protected] or DM her on Instagram @elisabethgaff.