CSUN head of elections talks about senate experience ahead of this year’s election

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A CSUN election booth will be in the Free Speech Area in front of Lied Library on election days. Photo courtesy of UNLV libraries official website, https://www.library.unlv.edu/about

With CSUN senate elections less than a week away, Robert Bellucci, head of CSUN elections and current senator for the College of Liberal Arts, talked about the experience of running for CSUN senate and the prospects of the incoming senate class. 

“For me, it was a little weird,”  Bellucci said. “I mean, I just post my story, sometimes send out messages to my classes, then talk to my friends and have them become registered supporters and then have them talk to their classes to get votes out. It was a lot of impersonal messages.”

Bellucci ran for office when classes were still completely virtual. This meant that he had to reach students without being able to talk to students face-to-face. For Bellucci, this meant that he was only able to campaign from the comfort of his own home, but also he was never sure whether his messaging was reaching voters. 

Bellucci prefers the return of campaigning on campus. He emphasized how important it is to physically go to classes.

“What I like about it is it shows the candidate that you actually have to make those connections to get elected into your position,”  Bellucci said. “You actually have to make that effort and you have to talk to the students because at the end of the day, we’re the voice of the students.” 

For the election itself, Bellucci said that the level of competition for each seat in most colleges lends to the highest level of competitive campaigning. Each seat has only about two to three candidates vying for the spot. Candidates this semester have a higher chance of winning than losing. 

“When it’s so close, I can lose by one or two votes, so it’s really about pushing people to get out there and campaign,” Bellucci said. “Encourage people to talk to people they have never talked to before.” 

In his time as a voice of the students, Bellucci recalled the creative solutions that he and his colleagues found for problems that they came across. He recalled specifically the collaboration with the president and the Ways and Means Committee to allocate extra funds beyond the $10,000 limit for student organizations who needed it.

He remembered his class of senators had “hit the ground running” when entering office. That group of senators did not come into the senate with a shyness that often comes with being new to the position, according to Bellucci. This is also a quality that he sees in this incoming class as well. 

“From what I’ve seen from the newer candidates, I have a lot of faith,” Bellucci said. “I really have a lot of faith that most of them coming in are going to make an immediate impact and they’re going to stand out and really hit that ground running.”

Voting will be held online on Oct. 13 and 14 at the UNLV Involvement Center’s website. Students will receive a link to the voting page in an email to their Rebel email accounts. Voting will open at 9 a.m. Oct. 13 and close at 5 p.m. on Oct. 14. 

CSUN will operate two voting booths on campus for both voting days. These booths will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on both voting days. At these booths CSUN staff will assist you in finding your email link and voting on the involvement center. One of these booths will be located in the free speech area in front of the library and the other will be at the Student Union. 

A voter’s guide will also be available online on the voting days to find information on your college’s candidates.

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