Voter turnout for Student Government Elections at Ball State have decreased drastically over the last three years.
Last year, voter turnout was low with only 1,172 Ball State students placing votes, which amounts to around five percent of the roughly 22,000 population of students that go to Ball State.
Amplify, the only slate to run for executive office, won the election receiving 899 of the total votes while 273 votes were in favor of a no confidence vote, meaning the voters did not feel Amplify was qualified to serve as the executive slate.
The year prior, OPTiC won a close race by 2 percentage points and had 1,328 of the total 2,636 votes placed. That was down over 750 total votes from the year before.
Justin Bandura, a junior at Ball State, said he has not voted in the SGA Elections because he does not really know what SGA specifically does and did not know enough about the slate last year to want to vote.
“I think a big part of that last year was we only had one slate so it was really boring for people so I think that this year … with more than one slate voter turnout will increase,” Student Government President Isaac Mitchell said.
SGA Election Chair Sara Maier agreed with Mitchell that the low voter turnout could be explained because only one slate ran.
With three slates running for this year’s Student Government Association Election, Empower, Elevate and United will be competing to get students at Ball State to the polls to vote them in.
Maier said public polling places will be used again this year for voting along with email to help increase turnout.
“It makes voting a little more tangible thing for people, it makes things more visible and you get those fun little buttons and stickers when you vote in public,” she said.
Maier also said that the Election Board will be partnering with the Student Senate to go to organizations on campus that may not be visited by the slates to increase outreach and get more people to vote.
Voting opens for students Feb. 25 at 8 a.m. and closes Feb. 26 at 5 p.m.