By Taylor Boomsma and Elizabeth Hernandez

Almost three times the number of students cast their votes in the 2019 Associated Students Inc. (ASI) elections, compared to the 2018 election season.

A total of 2,306 students, or 8% of the student body, voted for the upcoming year’s student leaders.

Pasindu Senaratne, third-year business student and current ASI vice president, along with Rachel Hunter, third-year political science major and current senator pro-tempore, won the election with 911 votes.

ASI 2019-2020 President Pasindu Senaratne (Taylor Boomsma / The Poly Post)

They were deducted 25 votes due to an election code violation. The candidates posted an advertisement at a fence near The Den by Denny’s, where marketing materials are prohibited.

ASI Elections Chair Maricruz Santander announced the results during U-hour on Thursday, April 18 in a very crowded University Park.

Before Santander revealed the winners of the senator, ASI president and ASI vice president positions, Lea M. Jarnagin, vice president for student affairs, spoke on the significance of the student voice and student government, especially in the diverse California State University system.

“You’re representing nearly 500,000 students across 23 campuses spanning from the northernmost tip to the southernmost tip of the state of California,” Jarnagin said. 

Pasindu Senaratne celebrates after winning the election. (Taylor Boomsma / The Poly Post)

“That is something that we should all be incredibly proud of and have a very deep respect for the responsibility that comes with it.”

The student leaders elected into position will work closely with Jarnigain to accomplish their goals for the coming year.

“I want to thank all of our candidates again for [their] willingness to step forward. Regardless of the outcome of today, your voice is needed on this campus and so I want to say a pre-congratulations to those who are the winners, and I want to make a special outreach to those who are not to say, ‘Please, we need you … to serve this terrific association.’”

The eight college senators were announced along with the four senator at-large positions leading up to the results of the ASI president and vice president.

Senaratne thanked the students for their support throughout the campaign, while Hunter invited the other candidates to join their team and apply to several cabinet positions.

“For all the candidates [who] did not get elected, please come talk to us about being on our cabinet. We want you on our team. We’ve seen your dedication to this campus,” Hunter said in her acceptance speech after the elections announcement.

President-elect Pasindu Senaratne, outgoing president Jennifer Greenberg, and Rachel Hunter, newly elected vice president. (Taylor Boomsma / The Poly Post)

The current administration still has to finish the school year, giving Senaratne and Hunter time to interview potential cabinet members and build their team before summer break begins. 

Students interested in serving in ASI are encouraged to visit the student government office in Building 35, suite 1339, to apply.

Update: April 23, 2019, 7:00 p.m.
We updated this article to include the election code violation causing Senaratne and Hunter’s 25 vote deduction.

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