The Fairfield University Student Association is now on the hunt for its 76th president as the candidacy process is now in full swing. Feb. 1 marked the beginning of the strenuous, six-part campaign process that will last one month.
What Does The FUSA President Do?
According to the current FUSA President, Jordan Gale ‘23, the role acts as the liaison between Fairfield University students and Fairfield University administrators. They represent the student body by communicating their needs while also spearheading some of the biggest school-wide events, such as the Spring Concert and President’s Ball.
“Normally, students aren’t able to speak directly to President [Mark] Nemec or other higher-up administrators at Fairfield, which is why this role is so important,” Gale explains. “I am able to hear student concerns, share that information with those who are in charge and make a difference.”
Who Can Run?
Anyone can run to be FUSA’s next president except for those in the graduating class of ‘23 as it is a position for the 2023-2024 academic school year. Students who are looking to run for university office and believe they have the leadership and organizational skills to take on the job are encouraged to sign up on Life@Fairfield.
For those who declare and are deemed eligible (they are in both good academic and social standing with the university), the candidate will then receive their individual petition where they must collect at least 200 signatures to get on the election ballot.
Most candidates will then advertise their expertise through social media, posters around campus, QR codes and more.
Petitions will close on Feb. 16, but if a student does not attain the 200 needed signatures, they still have the opportunity to run for president as a write-in.
Why Is There A Debate?
During the following week on Feb. 21 at 7 p.m., the annual presidential debate will occur in the Lower Level Barone Campus Center. As explained by FUSA Court Chief Justice Caroline Cody ‘25, “This event is hosted by the court as we facilitate it and prepare a number of questions [for the candidates] ranging from their platforms to campus-wide issues.” The candidates will have to answer questions with no preparation.
The audience and student body will also have the opportunity to ask questions during the debate and hear live answers from each running pair. To do this, you must write your question on a notecard and hand them in before the start of the debate.
As a result, this night-time event is a great opportunity to learn more about each candidate and their platform as they reveal their values on the spot.
How Can I Vote?
The voting ballot opens on Life@Fairfield from Feb. 23 to Feb. 28 at 5 p.m. Throughout those days, you will receive multiple emails that serve as reminders, directions and updates for the voting process. Around campus, you may spot scattered posters and lawn signs with QR codes in academic buildings and residence halls that will bring you to the voting site, making it more accessible. Tables will also be camped out in the Daniel Grace Tully Dining Commons encouraging you to vote.
When Will We Know Who Is Elected?
Two hours after the ballot closes, the results are announced at the election party held in the LLBCC on Tuesday, Feb. 28 at 7 p.m. Refreshments and catering will be provided for attendees. All students are welcome to celebrate and congratulate FUSA’s 76th President.