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Delegate aims to establish more inclusive voting

ASWSU Honors rep. hopes to change voting on Senate

Honors+Delegate+Hayden+Arend%2C+left%2C+wants+a+formal+vote+on+the+Senate+and+an+odd+number+of+voters+to+avoid+ties.
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Delegate aims to establish more inclusive voting

Honors Delegate Hayden Arend, left, wants a formal vote on the Senate and an odd number of voters to avoid ties.

Honors Delegate Hayden Arend, left, wants a formal vote on the Senate and an odd number of voters to avoid ties.

OLIVER MCKENA | Daily Evergreen File

Honors Delegate Hayden Arend, left, wants a formal vote on the Senate and an odd number of voters to avoid ties.

OLIVER MCKENA | Daily Evergreen File

OLIVER MCKENA | Daily Evergreen File

Honors Delegate Hayden Arend, left, wants a formal vote on the Senate and an odd number of voters to avoid ties.

SANG JUNG, Evergreen reporter

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Hayden Arend, ASWSU Honors Delegate, first got involved in student government after being prompted by the WSU Aerospace Club president when the delegate seat was vacated.

Arend, a junior chemical engineering major from Anchorage, Alaska, said he wanted to be in ASWSU to serve students and bring their concerns directly to the university administration.

He successfully proposed two referenda at Wednesday’s Senate meeting, both seeking to amend ASWSU’s constitution. Arend’s proposals will appear on March’s ASWSU ballot.

 

Honor’s College representation

Arend authored a referendum that would change how the Honors College is represented on the Senate.

He explained the Honors College is represented by a delegate rather than a senator. Delegates do not have a formal vote on the Senate floor, limiting the position’s effectiveness.

“Although they can still speak on the Senate floor and write their own legislation, having them be endowed with the formal vote will just add that much more efficacy to that position,” Arend said.

The change would be important for increasing student voices on the Senate, he said, especially because the Honors community is so tight-knit.

Arend said it has been easy for him to reach out to students within the Honor’s College and get their opinions on items brought before the Senate.

“Something that’s sometimes difficult to do if you are a representative of a larger college, or of all students on campus, is getting some really good student feedback on how you should vote,” Arend said. “But within the Honor’s College, that’s easy because it’s easy to facilitate communications within that college.”

 

Breaking the tie

Arend authored another referendum to change the number of votes on the Senate from even to odd to avoid ties.

Under current policy, ASWSU Vice President Garrett Kalt would cast a vote to break a tie.

Arend said even though ties don’t happen very often, he believed the Senate should pursue amending the constitution.

 

Creating an ASWSU communication department

On what he hopes to do on the Senate, Arend said he is looking forward to helping create an ASWSU communication department.

“The proposed idea is … essentially a department that would facilitate the communication of ASWSU to the general student populous,” he said. “Communication is one of the areas that I feel we fall short, and so this is a great way to keep the students informed on what their government does for them.”

 

The most important issue for students this semester

 Arend said that with numerous items on the ballot for this particular election, students would have a bigger say in what happens within ASWSU next year.

“Right now, it’s a big chance for students to play a role in their student government, whereas normally it’s kind of the government doing their thing and students doing their thing, more or less separately,” he said. “It’s a good time for us to collaborate and make sure that the next session will be better than the current one.”

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