After a week of intense campaigning and four days of voting, the University of Winnipeg Students’ Association (UWSA) has a new executive team and board of directors. However, only 9.1 per cent of the student body cast votes (849 ballots), a decrease of 4.2 per cent from last year’s general elections.
“I was expecting [voter turnout] to increase,” chief elections commissioner Jenna Myles said.
Myles said because there were fewer contested executive positions on this year’s ballot, some students may not have been inclined to vote.
Second-year business student Matt Friesen hit the polls primarily to vote for the contested position of business and economics director. Friesen said he hopes that relations between the Business and Administration Students Association (BASA) and the UWSA, which he said have been slightly turbulent in the past, will be improved next year.
“I wanted the best representation in the UWSA for BASA,” he said.
In addition to improving relations with student groups, Friesen hopes that next year’s UWSA executive team and board members will work hard to publicize campus events.
“This year was pretty good,” he said, noting that this year’s campus activities were certainly advertised better than they were in the past. “I think students are starting to realize that there are more opportunities outside of class.”
Re-elected president Jason Syvixay said he is pleased with the results of the election, as his entire slate was elected.
“We campaigned so hard, so it is a sweet victory,” he said.
Syvixay is looking forward to working with his executive team and board of directors in the new term, which begins in May.
“We are very positive about the new year and we want to get stuff done,” he said.
Myles said she thinks the new executives are well prepared for their term.
“I feel that they’re going to start off really well,” she said. “They seem to get along really well and they understand what their positions entail.”