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‘Fight for our rights’: Student Senate urges students to vote

With the election coming up on Nov. 6, students are urged to make their voices heard and hit the polls.

The Student Senate is actively campaigning for students to take action, and has already successfully registered more than 250 students to vote.

“It’s their civic duty,” Student Senate President Russell Ferguson said. “It might not seem like it makes a difference at the federal level, but locally is makes a big difference.”

The big issue that Student Senate is advocating this election is student tuition. In the last decade, tuition has more than doubled at MSUM, forcing many students to rethink the college decision. Funding from the state, which used to sit around 60 percent, has declined to 39.1 percent over the last 10 years.

“We have been losing funding every year. We need to say something and fight for ourselves,” Ferguson said.

An example for “fighting for ourselves” is before school started this fall, Ferguson and other members of the Student Senate went door-to-door surrounding the campus hanging up door hangers. The hangers gave tips on how college students can be good neighbors, and on the reverse side how residents can be good neighbors to the college kids next door.

“We need to fight for our rights, but we still have to be good people,” Ferguson said.

Those eligible to vote in the election are Minnesota residents. However, those who have lived in Minnesota for 20 days or more, are considered Minnesota residents and can participate in the election. This year the CMU will be offering a new polling location to those students living on campus.

MSUM’s chapter of the Minnesota State University Student Association has been working to keep tuition prices from hiking and lower the cost of textbooks. Although they are separate entities, MSUSA and Student Senate work closely together.

On Sept. 21, MSUM will host a conference where the participating schools, along with Dragons After Dark, will help light the fire in students and encourage them to vote.

Students can stop in at the Student Senate office in the basement of the CMU or register to vote online at www.ci.moorhead.mn.us/city_hall/pdf/VRA_County.pdf.

There are 14 polling locations around the city of Moorhead. For a map of polling locations, visit www.ci.moorhead.mn.us/Uploads/Maps/2012_Wards_Precincts.pdf.

The Student Senate will hold their first meeting of the year on Sept. 6at 5 p.m. on the second floor of the CMU. All students are welcome to attend to discuss issues. Information about voter registration and polling locations will be given at the meeting.

BY MEREDITH WATHNE
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