Election fever is in full swing in the Bahamas and the UWI CHTM Campus is no exception. Having been on the campaign trail from nomination night (April 10th, 2017) until the release of results (April 21st, 2017); the competition was flaming hot, with campaigning starting as early as midnight on the April 12th.
Campaigns went digital as this year the nominees were not allowed to put up posters on campus. From online posters to music videos, we saw it all. In the words of our current Vice President, Keron Best; “Omg these people going all out. I love it, trust me!!!” We certainly saw the 2nd years expressing their desire to win both aggressively and intelligently through their media posts.
This has been my third opportunity to witness elections at UWI CHTM and in all my experience this particular election was the most exciting yet. Nominees were unabashedly and boldly declaring their intentions to revamp the current system by bringing back proven established methods of getting things done by following the Mona Campus blueprint or creating new ways of reaching the student body and the public at large.
Some of platform promises included:
- Setting up sub-committees to assist the executive team
- Improving health, safety and living conditions
- Networking with the UB and the general public in marketing events
- Attracting more Bahamian students to the CHTM family
- Putting contingency plans in place to deal with crisis or other urgent student concerns
- Creating a forum whereby students can voice their concerns to the Executive Team
- Handling non-productive or rude Executive Team Members
- Implementing strategies to foster the smooth transition of leadership after elections
- Arming incoming students with the information they need to prepare and plan to participate in various activities/events
- Bringing back the Big Brother & Sister Program
The Executive Team and Dr. Spencer, along with the student body were on hand to ask questions and force the candidates to consider some of the challenges they may face in producing some of their manifestos. Many were able to respond successfully under pressure. The reality check they were given highlighted to them how very serious the business of leading the student body is.
After ten days of campaigning it was time to for the students to choose the candidates who they believe would represent them best. On Friday, April 21st approximately 81% of the student body voted. However, when I went to vote, the computer room was like a ghost town. The Executive Team were on hand to instruct us about the voting process. Many of us were torn between the presidential candidates and personally I believed that they should have been on the same team and not in opposition.
All of the candidates were gathered in the dining with the exception of Mariah Simmons who was not feeling well. The candidates were thanked for running a good campaign and then the results were announced. My heart out went to each and everyone because there could only be one winner even though in my opinion they all did an outstanding job.
Ladies and gentlemen, the 2017 CHTM Executive Team:
Official result compliments of Neil McIntyre.
by Edith Ferguson, BSc. Tourism Management, 2017