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Moving up the ranks:Student Body Vice President Carley Rotenberg elected as 2017-18 student body president

The results of the student body elections were announced on Sunday at precisely 4 p.m. Presidential and vice presidential candidates Carley Rotenberg and Alexandra Burroughs won the general student election for their respective positions, and Christian Merheb won the election for student board representative running as the only official candidate on the ballot.

On Sunday afternoon, around 30 individuals gathered in the Governance Associations Complex within the Memorial Union Building to hear the results of the student body general election. The student body candidates and other students crowded around Student Senate Speaker Alexander Fries in anticipation, as he methodically wrote out all of the votes attributed to each candidate on the white board in the front of the room. The Borda point counts were written rank by rank for each candidate. The room went silent. Finally, the totals could be seen and Fries circled the total count for Rotenberg and Burroughs. The cheers and claps were heard; Rotenberg and Burroughs had won. 

“I’m really excited about the results of the election. The number one thing we learned when running the campaign was student outreach. We are going to continue to reach out to as many students as we can,” said Student Body President-elect Carley Rotenberg.

Alex Burroughs (left) and Carley Rotenberg (right) elected as 2017-18 student body vice president and president

“I felt like I ran a productive campaign despite running essentially unopposed. Some people might think a win is a given. I didn’t treat my campaign like that. I will continue to use this position to fight for the students as we move forward as a collective student body,” Merheb said, the student board representative-elect. 

A total of 1,842 votes were cast for president and vice president, and a total of 1,539 votes were cast for student board representative. A system of  Borda count points was employed to elect the president, vice president and board representative. On the ballot, students ranked their choice from first to third. The Borda points were then calculated by multiplying the number of votes by three for rank of first, two for rank of second and one for rank third. The points were then added together.       

Looking at the total vote count, the student participation increased from last year.

“We were happy to see that the election turnout was higher than the years prior. We attribute that to multiple candidates and their campaigns. We look forward to looking into how we can increase the turnout and reach more people next time around,” Fries said in response to the election results.

The other candidates wasted no time in congratulating and showing their support and respect for the winners. “We are very happy with the results of the election. We both got exactly what we wanted out of this campaign. We wanted more people to vote and get involved in student government, and it showed. I think [Rotenberg and Burroughs] will do an incredible job. They are very fit for the position,” said runner-up presidential candidate, Chris Mignanelli.

“I am very happy with the election results. [Rotenberg] and I really came to respect one another. We each felt like either one of us would make a great president,” said presidential candidate Elena Ryan, who came in third for the election.

Rotenberg and Burroughs won the general election with a total of 3,449 Borda count points with Chris Mignanelli and Luke Daly coming in a close second with 3,217 points, and Elena Ryan and José Calvo coming in third with 2,700 points. Merheb won the university system student board representative position with a total of 2,951 points with unofficial write-in runner-up Connor Perry with 49 points.

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