OUSC gears up for election time

As Oakland University Student Congress elections draw near, the OUSC office is as busy as ever.

The hubbub will end April 13 when the new president, vice president, and legislators are sworn in.

The president and vice president are the liaisons between OU students and the administration, explained Annie Meinberg, the current president.

The legislators find problems on campus and try to solve them, said Cassandra Hock, the administrative assistant of student congress.

On top of Hock’s usual duties of maintaining the office and keeping documents such as meeting minutes and bills organized, she is in charge of the election.


The election kickoff will be held Wednesday, Feb. 18 at 11 a.m. Tickets – teams of a president and vice president – had information tables, and legislators were there to talk to students who attended.

A vice presidential debate will take place on March 3 at 12 p.m. in the Oakland Room. The potential vice presidents will discuss their platforms.

The presidential debate is scheduled for noon on March 11 in Gold Rooms B and C.

Legislators will have a chance to meet with their peers at noon March 17 in Fireside Lounge. This will be an informal walk and talk event.

Candidate Requirements

Candidates must fulfill requirements to be on the ballot. Hock keeps track of what candidates have completed.

Potential candidates had to attend an election orientation in early February where they learned about the job responsibilities and election rules.

They then turned in a declaration of candidacy and agreed to follow the rules.

Legislators then have seven days to get 50 signatures from other students. Tickets have to get 250 signatures.

Candidates turn in their platforms that Hock puts on oakland.edu/voteou for the student body to read.

Failure to turn in necessary paperwork on time cuts candidates out of the running. If they still want to run, they can campaign as a write-in.

Candidates can begin to campaign after the election kick-off.

“Think of all the ways you can market. You can do that with yourself as a candidate,” Hock said.

There are many rules that candidates must follow when campaigning. For example, they can’t chalk under building awnings or campaign within 100 feet of a polling station.

Any student that notices a candidate breaking one of the rules can file a grievance. When votes are counted, grievances take a percentage of votes off the candidate’s total.

Validation Committee

Toward the end of the election, the validation committee reviews grievances and everything that Hock has organized during the election. If serious mistakes were made, the entire process may have to be redone.


Voting will be open to students March 23-30. Polling stations will be set up around campus, or students can vote online at oakland.edu/voteou.

Last year, about 1,000 students voted, said Hock. This number is typical.

Hock hopes to get a bigger turnout since voting is open for seven days this year. It was only open for three in previous years.

Marketing is key, Hock said. Students will be reached through social media and emails.

Candidates can also encourage students to vote at GrizzOrg weekly meetings.

“The candidates do a really good job for me,” Hock said.

Liz Iwanski, the current vice president, said she wants students to realize the importance of student congress and vote. The president and vice president talk directly to administration to try to improve campus life.