Student Council election causes controversy

Nathan Zwahlin

Emily Herrington, Arts Editor

The De Soto High School 2014 Student Council election gained a lot more attention than past elections. More students signed up and ran, and participated in the running as well.

Student Council adviser Lori Hughes has been leading Student Council for two years and has yet to see so many students on the ballot.

Student Council co-advisor Katie Meserko agrees that the excitement was encouraging.

“I think there was a lot more enthusiasm. More people signing up to be a part of the club. There was just a lot more passion to it and people seemed to be really excited for it,” Meserko said.

Sophomore Sam Seidl believes that the increase of runners on the ballot has to do with the increase of Student Council activity and school spirit.

“In [Student Council] this year we did a lot more, and we’re a lot more out there,” Seidl said. “I feel like a lot of people decided that this was something they wanted to do after seeing what Student Council was about.”

Sophomore Morgan Darter believes that the posters were the best part.

“I liked the posters. It was funny because it started as a joke,” Darter said. “Like somebody hung one for someone else, who didn’t know about it, and then it just like exploded. It made it kind of more fun.”

Seidl agrees that the posters were funny and that the Soviet Bear posters really topped it off.

Soviet Bear was a collection of posters that were made in response to the posters of several juniors in the running. It was joke that used communism puns and word play to interact with the election.

Junior Nathan Zwahlin posted his Soviet Bear posters on Reddit, and they became a hit over night. His photo album on imagur has currently received 1,085,882 votes and counting. While the posters were a great way to add some comedy to the election, Zwahlin has no plans to continue with Soviet Bear in the future and Soviet Bear did not end up receiving enough votes to be placed on the student council.

To become a member of the Student Council, students are required to have two teacher recommendation forms filled out, they must fill out an application for themselves, sign a contract, and finally place in the top seven of a student-based election.

Junior Abby Oberle believes that the competition was completely fair.

“It was healthy competition. I think that it was probably frustrating for some people who were already in it though,” Oberle said. “I still think it was good to have people who wanted to join though.”

Junior Khamerin Trotter was one of the frustrated students.

“There were definitely a lot more people who decided to join and that affected others in a big way,” Trotter said. “Just the fact that it’s senior year, and it’s kind of hard to find out that you didn’t make it after dedicating so many years to it.”

Seidl felt that having the vote be purely student-based was not fair for some of the students.

“I don’t really like how the students vote. You don’t really feel like you can do anything to help yourself when it’s entirely based on a student vote,” Seidle said. “You’re not going to meet or be able to express your opinion to everyone in your grade. So having my fate in the election decided by them, people who I don’t even know, is just interesting.”

Trotter agrees that the student vote can often lead to a “popularity contest” where students do not completely value the effort that others put in throughout former years.

Although Trotter hates to say goodbye, she still believes that the 2014-15 Student Council will be effective.

“I honestly feel like the underclassmen and some of the upperclassmen really wanted to join for school spirit and that will benefit StuCo next year,” Trotter said.

Seven students were elected from each class to be a part of the 14-15 Student Council. This includes juniors Abby Cater, Emily Herington, Kelista McGraw, Xena Moore, Oberle, Tessa Phonsavath and Meredith Wolfe; sophomores Isaac Albert, Kylie Corneliusen, Darter, Allison Eaton, Lyndsey Fowks, Kelsey Mills and Jaycie Thaemert; and freshmen Becca Clancy, Simon Couch, Kayla Deghand, Andrew Dowdy, Gabrielle Mallozzi, Tarah Phongsavath and Taylor Ramseyer.

Wolfe was elected president with Cater as her vice president and Oberle as secretary at the last meeting held on May 20.

Oberle hopes that the influx of new faces are able to bring change and able to get work done.

“It’s going to be awesome to have a new group of students who really want to be involved and who will put in a lot more effort than we’ve had in the past,” Oberle said.

Hughes agrees with Oberle.

“We’re excited for a new school year,” Hughes said. “We’ve got a lot of neat ideas for next year and hopefully we see more school spirit and a positive influence on the student body.”