Feeling powerless in a system that needs to take action.
Despite being a proud registered voter, I doubt I’ll vote in the upcoming ASI elections because student government can’t do shit. Sure they can do stuff to make sure students have a good time while they’re here, but when it comes to solving the problems the school has or making any significant change, student government has very little power. I know, because I have been in student government several times.
I was elected student representative and ASB Treasurer in 4th grade, Newspaper Editor in 5th grade, and in the 8th grade the teacher of the ASB class thankfully let me be a part of ASB because my art class sucked.
In all those positions I really didn’t do that much. I was only able to publish one school paper at the end of 5th grade because my elementary school didn’t have the funds for a working paper (it didn’t even look like a paper, it was just a bunch of word documents stapled together) and in the 8th grade I proposed this film festival (which had very low turnout), but that’s about all that I had accomplished in ASB. In my sophomore year of high school I seriously thought that I would run for junior class representative the following year, but then I changed my mind when I discovered that what the students in the high school ASB mostly did was create flyers for events. So I decided to do the theater arts class instead, and I have never looked back in regret.
In all my time in ASB, students couldn’t do anything significant. They couldn’t ban school uniforms, change the lunch menus, or even try to make lunch more affordable. The only time you’ll see anybody in public school student government making any significant change is when you’re watching TV, but never in real life.
I know ASI has done some stuff in the past, like get rid of the plus/minus signs we see on our grades and create the student union. This is great and all, but can they do anything to stop rising tuition costs? No, they cannot. I know the ticket John and Jon plan on giving away 30% of their salary to scholarships for students, but even if they did it wouldn’t make that much of a difference. The top ASI executives each get about $22,000 a year, so 30% of $44,000 would be just $13,200. I know this sounds like a lot of money, but when you divide it among the 20,000 or 30,000 plus students that need some form of financial aid, it’s really not all that much. Besides, how are they going to decide which students get their scholarships and which ones don’t? These are the kinds of things they need to think about.
Until ASI can lower tuition costs, I doubt I’ll ever vote in ASI elections. Because I’ll just be throwing my vote away.