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Election Endeavors: Inside the Race for Class Representative

George P. walks through his exciting campaign for Class Representative!

George P. walks through his exciting campaign for Class Representative!


A couple days ago, I was named a 2027 Class Representative after a competitive (and very stressful) election process. Regardless of the stress, it was super fun and I was honored to be chosen by my classmates for this role.

What is a Class Representative?

Here at Carleton, each class has two representatives to support their ideas on the CSA Senate.  Class Representatives serve as a voting member of the CSA Senate, host social events to promote class unity, and serve as a liaison between the student body and the administration. Moreover, representatives must serve on different CSA committees (you can learn about my committee by reading about my Budget Committee experience!) The CSA Senate meets once a week to discuss different aspects of Carleton and vote on new policies. You can learn some cool fun facts about the CSA Senate here!

Campaign Posters
A few of the many campaign posters that I put around campus

The Election Process

Elections for CSA positions (including President, Vice President, Treasurer, Class Representatives and a few others) occur every year during Winter Term. Candidates declare their candidacy by Week 5 of the term and they then have two weeks to put themselves out into the community and try to win votes! Candidates will campaign in different ways but the go-to’s are posters, fun emails, Instagram accounts, and even Yik-Yak. The process is a quick one so the election can definitely dominate any candidate’s life for a few weeks! 

Election Calendar
Election Timeline provided by our excellent president Quinn Buhman!

Platforms

Arguably, the most important aspect of every campaign is the Candidate Platforms. Every candidate, even those running unopposed, must release a platform to the CSA Website. You can read the 2024 Candidate Platforms here! Given I was running for class representative, my platform focused on potential social events. However, the talk of the elections this year was whether or not to increase Sproncert funding, with every student having strong opinions one way or the other. Because Carleton students have a unique form of humor – small liberal-arts school in the Midwest humor – you will always find a joke platform or two. This year we had a candidate run for president on a platform of beaver empowerment which became the talk of campus for a few days until he dropped out to put the focus on more serious candidates. 

Campaign Email
Campaign Email (got to keep the elections fun!)

Results

Despite the voting process being completely digital, Carleton students definitely participate in the elections! Over 50% of the Freshman class voted in this year’s election and over 1,000 students voted in total, which is a lot for such a small school! My election was a close one with a lot of really suitable candidates, so I was super nervous the night before results came out, I could barely sleep! The day after was a whirlwind with people I didn’t even know congratulating me on the win. The other winner (s/o to India Ratha) and I had a small election party that night and now I can’t wait to get to work in the Spring!

2027 Class Reps
Your 2027 Class Reps!

George P. (he/him) is a first-year student interested in studying Geology, Religion, and Physics. George is a native of Western Massachusetts and can’t wait to explore everything Minnesota has to offer! George’s passions include Karls frisbee, flannels, CANOE trips, and root vegetables. George also serves as a Class of 2027 Representative and next summer he will be staying at Carleton to work as an intern on the Student Organic Farm.