Organizations shift to calendar year election cycle

The Association of Student Representatives, Greek Council, Trinity Diversity Connection and Trinity University Volunteer Action Community moved their officer election timelines closer to the calendar year timeline after discussions with Jamie Thompson, director of Campus and Community Involvement.

“I meet with the big six organizations on a monthly basis, and we talked about these changes last semester,” Thompson said. “We decided to see what happened after the university-sponsored groups changed their timelines before making any big decisions or recommendations.”

Although the four organizations moved their election timelines earlier in the year than they were held previously, they did not change to a true calendar year election cycle.

“They made some movement towards being closer to a calendar year election cycle, but none of them are there yet,” Thompson said. “In order to have a true calendar year election cycle, they would need to be selecting officers before holiday break in the fall semester or in the first few days of the spring semester.”

TUVAC moved their elections approximately one month earlier to Jan. 24 this year. TUVAC changed their election cycle in anticipation of an earlier date for the IMPACT conference, which TUVAC attends yearly.

“The IMPACT conference changed the date from March to February, so that’s mostly why TUVAC changed its election timeline,” said Edwin Blanton, advisor to TUVAC. “I probably would like TUVAC to change their elections to the fall semester. I don’t think we had enough publicity for the elections this year.”

Greek Council changed their election cycle as well. Last year Greek Council held elections on Apr. 4, and this year they held elections last Sunday, Feb. 4.

“We really saw the benefits of moving our elections to earlier in the calendar year,” said Moira Allen, co-chair of Greek Council. “It should help us avoid the problem of unmotivated second-semester seniors.”

Student Ambassadors and Student Programming Board chose not to move their election cycles. Student Ambassadors plans many senior events such as the Senior Tower Climb, the Casino Party and the Last Great Reception.

“We are very fortunate to have seniors who remain active their senior year, especially in the spring semester,” said Christine Burnett, coordinator of  young alumni and student programs. “Our members are active in planning the events and want to remain on the planning committees for the senior events.”

Student organization training will occur in April, as in previous years.

“The organizations that switched their election cycles should have a big advantage during organizational training,” Thompson said. “They will have about two months of context to build on and should be more successful because of it.”

Progress on the transition for student organizations from academic year election cycles to calendar year election cycles will continue throughout the semester as monthly meetings between CCI and the “big six” university-sponsored organizations continue.

“I think it’s an important concept for us to explore,” Thompson said. “I want the decision, whatever it is, to benefit the entire community, but I’m not sure if there has been enough communication about this.”