Election packets and petitions for Miami University’s Associated Student Government’s (ASG) fall 2022 senate elections are live now until Friday.
There are 39 seats available: eight academic senator seats, 16 on-campus senator seats, 14 off-campus senator seats and one resident assistant (RA) seat.
Each district will have two on-campus senator seats. The academic senator openings include two for the College of Creative Arts (CCA), two for the College of Education, Health and Society (EHS), one for the College of Engineering and Computing (CEC) and three for the Farmer School of Business (FSB).
Responsibilities for senators include going to ASG’s weekly meetings on Tuesdays at 6 p.m. and sitting on two ASG committees.
Victoria Ogunnowo is currently a College of Arts and Science (CAS) academic senator and member of ASG’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) committee. Their position includes representing students in science.
“I’m expected to advocate for students in the biological and physical sciences department,” Ogunnowo said. “[I] create events, find out what [students’] needs are [and let] the students in that particular department know that we’re here and we can connect them to administrators.”
Senators work with Miami staff, students and administrators to bring change that students wish to see to campus. Initiatives created by senators and cabinet members make these changes happen.
One initiative Ogunnowo has been working on is an upcoming podcast titled “Embracing Differences.” Ogunnowo is creating this podcast with the goal of giving students an outlet to talk about issues they want to see improved.
“[People] can write articles on their identity, it can be anonymous, and [it’s a platform for students] to advocate for themselves,” Ogunnowo said.
Wes Payne, Speaker of the Senate, said students who are interested in addressing issues on campus and want to see change happen should run for ASG.
“I think there are some very excellent organizations on campus that are dedicated to advocating for certain issues, and they do a very good job of that,” Payne said. “But I think in general, the best way for students to have an impact in their advocacy is through student government.”
Payne said ASG is also a good opportunity for leadership experience, professional development and making friends.
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“We get to be in the room with administrators,” Payne said. “[ASG] is really the best way on campus to get to do that, to get to have one-on-one conversations with people that make decisions on campus, and it’s a lot of fun.”
Cathleen McLaughlin, the current Secretary for Academic Affairs, said it’s also a good way to meet like-minded people.
“I think it's a great opportunity to connect with other people that have similar interests,” McLaughlin said. “And I think it’s a great opportunity to really better yourself and to be a part of an organization that truly values service.”
Ogunnowo said ASG is a necessary organization for Miami because its members have been able to make real improvements on campus.
“Even the Armstrong Student Center, it was through ASG student voices that the student center [was created],” Ogunnowo said. “So I think ASG is necessary, and I would say if you really want to make a change, please join. We need dedicated people and people who really want to take initiative.”
Students interested in running have until Friday, Sept. 2 to complete their petitions. Petitions require the signatures of at least 35 undergraduate students. After petitions are due, candidates will have three days to campaign before the student body votes.
Voting will take place on The Hub beginning Tuesday, Sept. 6 at 7 a.m. and ending Wednesday, Sept. 7 at 7 p.m.