A.S. Election Results Favor ASSIST Slate

Last Week Santa Monica College students practiced fulfilling their civic duty by taking part in the annual Associated Students elections. The elections were mainly between the ASSIST and EAKWO slates. Both parties slugged it out, and finally, a new leadership was born. The ASSIST team, headed by current student trustee and future AS President Cameron Henton ushered in the majority of candidates.

Many students and faculty on campus look forward to working with the future Associated Students as their platform of efficiency and financial responsibility remain on deck to soon become a reality.

However, it is important to give credit to our current AS, which did an extensive job publicizing and running the elections. They not only made word on campus huge through general advertising methods, but also delved into more abstract and modern means of communication by having all candidates post a video on youtube.com explaining their positions.

Two polling places were set up. One was in front of the library, the other inside of the cafeteria. Voting has also been made more convenient by allowing students to vote online. What's more they offered students the chance to win a multitude of prizes by voting. Even if a student chose to vote online all that one had to do was print out a receipt on any printer, and bring it to a polling booth at school for their free goods.

The free goods included a standard pop-culture "I voted" sticker along with the slightly contradictory gifts of ice cream and toothpaste. The AS also held a raffle for far more snazzy prizes such as a brand new bike, and a range of iPods. They also had raffles for gifts that benefit the winner and the school. This included $100 gift certificates to the student bookstore, and a haircut and style from the school's cosmetology department. The raffle has been held and the winning students have been notified.

While a cynic would say it was all the prizes that brought the crowds, and an optimist would say that perhaps the fever of political change is in the air following our recent president elections. No one can argue the fact that crowds certainly did come out. According to Arif Gheewala, the current Election Committee Vice Chair, 2,566 students voted. This number is not only a significant increase from years past, but also a breaking of all current SMC, AS, ICC voting records and currently stands as the highest amount of votes received in any school election.

Change came from across electoral slates. Other than Cameron Henton the ASSIST slate consists of current Primary Commissioner to the Director of Activities and Vice-President elect Rochelle Watkins; Student-Trustee elect Seth Smith; current Director of Financial Support and Director of Budget Management elect Michael Song; Student-Services Director elect Mike Jacobo; current commissioner of multiculturalism and Director of Student Outreach elect Nader Atassi; Director of Activities elect Andrew Lu; Director of Publicity Lior Braude; Director of Sustainability elect Natasha Gorodnitski; current Commissioner of Community Relations and Director of Student Instructional Support elect Diana Wattanapongsakorn; and finally Secretary elect Chantelle Eastmen.

What a proper note for this new AS administration to take office, on the wind of highest student voting record. This is a testament to both the current and future group. The battle was long fought, hard won and in the end something happened on campus that is very rare. The students got what they wanted. Hopefully with this bright, fresh set of faces running the show next year, the students will continue to get what they want.