There’s no getting around it: student government just isn’t that interesting. Now, this isn’t the fault of student government, as all governments are inherently uninteresting to most people most of the time (with some exceptions, see: the 2016 presidential election).
However, just like the local, state and federal government, the Associated Students of the University of Nevada has the power to change the way you live your life (or at least the quality of your time here at the University of Nevada, Reno).
So we’re going to tell why you should take the time to log into canvas and vote for your ASUN representatives (voting opens this Wednesday, 8 a.m. and runs until Thursday, 5 p.m.).
1. Whether you know it or not, you’re funding ASUN
Bundled into your tuition and fees is a $5 per credit hour fee for ASUN. It means a student enrolled in 15 credits per semester is paying $150 per year, and somewhere around $600 over the course of their enrollment at UNR to the Associated Students.
Add that up and you get a yearly budget north of $2.9 million.
That money goes to all sorts of things, from the stipends that pay your representatives to the regular concerts and events that take place over the course of the year. It funds the clubs you’re a part of, and — barring The Sagebrush, which does not receive direct funding from ASUN — the publications you read.
And the people in control of all this money are the senators and executive officers you will elect later this week. Indeed, it’s the president’s job to submit a budget to the senate’s Budget and Finance Committee, who in turn pass it on to the senate writ large for final approval. It’s a process that involves just a few dozen people, but in many ways, it impacts every single undergraduate on this campus.
2. ASUN officials represent your interests out in the world
Elected representatives are the faces of the student body in the community, and they make policies based on students’ best interests. In the past they’ve passed legislation supporting a tobacco free campus. They agreed to raise student fees for a new gym. They’ve raised the wages of professional staff. Campus groups go to ASUN for an idea about students’ interests. If you want a representative that reflects your interests, you have to vote for that individual.
Senators and the executive board members go to Carson City during the state legislative session when a student-related issue has a hearing. Next year the Nevada State Assembly and Senate will convene. The ASUN representatives elected this week will be our representatives for those bodies.
3. ASUN provides some important services
Ever used Campus Escort? Ever needed a lawyer to help with your MIC charge? Ever needed a six foot sub or sick speakers for a club event? ASUN provides these services to students (and students pay for them). Get your money’s worth, and make sure your investment is handled by the best possible people.
4. Voting isn’t hard
All you have to do is log in to Canvas (or WebCampus or whatever we’re calling it these days) and check a few boxes. It would take longer to make that bowl of instant ramen than it would to sign in and vote.
So tell Siri to make a reminder or make an event in Google Calendar: it’s time to vote.
The editorial board can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and on Twitter @NevadaSagebrush.