Home Campus President Ramlo urges students to run for Student Senate. Here’s how its elections work

President Ramlo urges students to run for Student Senate. Here’s how its elections work

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Because Ohio University Student Senate presidential elections in recent years have been uncontested, Senate President Lydia Ramlo implored students to run for an executive position in the spirit of promoting good government and competitive elections.

“For the past two years, (the ticket) was not contested, there was only one ticket that ran,” Ramlo said. “And as someone who has ran on both tickets, I love to see when there’s multiple tickets because we can challenge each other.

Here is everything students should know about the Senate’s election process:

To qualify for an election, candidates must be full-time students on Ohio U’s Athens campus and maintain a minimum 2.0 GPA, according to Student Senate’s rules and procedures. Prospective candidates must also acquire 25 signatures to run for a position in the general body and 75 to run for executive positions like president, vice president and treasurer.

While some Student Senate positions are elected, others are not, Ramlo said. 

Students will have the opportunity March 31 to vote for president, three executive senators, vice president and treasurer. Additionally, students can vote for senators who represent students in academic colleges (except for the Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine), and senators who serve students who live on campus and off campus.

All delegates from the Senate Appropriations Commission (SAC), which distributes money to student organizations, and senators-at-large are also elected.

Ramlo clarified that students can only vote for candidates within their respective colleges. However, everyone has the opportunity to vote for senators-at-large.

Students have the option to run either on a ticket with others or independently. 

The Senate’s rules and procedures rulebook list guidelines for the election, including restrictions on poster and flyer placement, in addition to alternative methods of campaigning, which can only be used two weeks before an election. 

Negative campaigning — false and defamatory statements and malicious behavior toward another candidate — is also prohibited. 

Campaigns are not allowed to use online material, including web pages and social media, until 20 days before the election.

Student Senate will hold elections March 31 to fill positions representing diverse constituencies. Applications for a slot on the ballot will close on Feb. 27. Students have the option to vote in-person at Baker Center or by email. The polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. A panel within Student Senate will announce results at 8 p.m.

The Senate’s Judicial Panel conducts elections, determines eligibility for the candidates and enforces all rules and procedures for elections and debates. It is also the duty of the chief justice of the Judicial Panel, Casey Hall-Jones, to submit a report on the elections within two weeks following election day. 

The report includes expenditures made by the panel and appropriations made to the panel, a summary of the conduct of the election and the signatures of the justices certifying that the report is complete and accurate to their knowledge, according to the Senate’s rules and procedures.

“At that announcement, we will announce everyone’s vote tallies for the different positions, who got first place and what percentage, who got second place and what percentage (and so on) for every single position,” Hall-Jones said. “That information will then be published and submitted to our historical records.” 

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