Wednesday, April 3, 2002
More than 1,000 vote in OUSC election
The first online election for OU Student Congress was a huge success, with more students voting than ever before.
Altogether, 1,250 students voted in the election, which is 300 more votes than last year’s total of 921, and more than double the 2000 results when 543 students voted.
Brian Tomina was elected president and Michelle Jamian vice president. The Tomina and Jamian team won the election by only one vote. They received 382 votes, while Kristina Ivanovic and Kenton Lewis had 381 votes. The Amir Emami and Matthew Fionda team received 215 votes, while team Avis Choulagh and Elvis Saloum had 115. There also were 116 write-in votes for president and vice president.
“I’m hoping that next year we get even more voters,” Jamian said. “I think after this election, people will realize how much their vote counts.”
OU is one of the few universities in Michigan to try online voting. OU Student Congress President Derek Dickow and David Herman, former assistant vice president of student services, suggested online voting after the University of Oklahoma increased participation in elections by 20 percent.
The online election made voting more convenient for students, allowing them to cast their ballot from any computer with Internet access at any time from Monday, March 25, at noon until Wednesday, March 27, at 10 p.m.
However, the results didn’t come as quickly as expected because of charges brought up against each team running for president and vice president. The charges were investigated by the elections validations committee, which validated only two of the charges against Tomina and Jamian related to posting and removal of campaign materials on campus. The committee later decided Tomina and Jamian had won the election despite the charges due to the OUSC election guidelines being so vague. The OU Student Congress hopes to address the problems with the election guidelines in the near future.