The General Student Council election will be held entirely online for the first time in Ewha history due to COVID-19. E!NERGY has officially registered as the sole candidate for the 53rd General Student Council on Nov. 11. After submitting the posters and additional material regarding their pledges, the candidates will be running election campaigns until Nov. 24. Following the campaign, the voting will be held from Nov. 25 to 26. The voting counting process will only begin if more than 50 percent had voted.
This year's election campaign period is expected to look quite different as most of the process will be done online. In particular, the campaigns speeches during chapel, used to be the most effective policy promotion strategy in the pre-COVID era, will not be possible due to online chapel services. Instead, they have decided to upload a video on e-class and the Eureka bulletin board from Nov. 16 to 24.
E!NERGY has promised to demand lower tuition and provide secure infrastructure. Students have continuously requested for a tuition refund partially due to the lower quality of online classes in face of the virus and the growing concerns about the lack of safety facilities. Other than these measures, the candidates are planning to support students preparing for national examinations by expanding special budgets.
The electorates will also work to expand employment of professors, establish a grading system appropriate for each type of course, and solve the problem of division classes by conducting a survey on the courses before the registration. The candidates will focus on improving the school’s public image by utilizing social media more actively and promote school performance. Moreover, it will consult a legal advisory group to deal with offensive postings deemed to be harmful to the school.
Besides the typical election pledges, in terms of COVID-19, E!NERGY further added that they will request the school to form a detailed manual for each stage of social distancing levels. More campaign promises regarding COVID-19 included fixing errors on CyberCampus and increasing the temperature check points on campus.
“2020 marks an important year for the General Student Council as every communication with students has turned online,” said Kim Min-seo and Park Su-bin, the president and vice president of E!NERGY respectively. “Due to elections also turning online, we were concerned about the students’ low participation rate in online signatures which had to be over 300 for us to be officially registered as the candidate.”
For the election pledges, Ewha student’s main concern was again focused on reducing or completely removing the notorious mandatory Chapel sessions, a pledge that has been never accomplished by any student council that came before. This year, however, E!NERGY did not include this in their campaign promises unlike their predecessors.
“Despite the high demand for changes in chapel sessions among students, there was never any practical change,” E!NERGY said. “However, this year, the very first online chapel has been carried out due to COVID-19. Through online chapel satisfaction surveys, we will try to fulfill student demands and improve next year’s chapel by easing the strict Pass or Fail system.”
Lastly, E!NERGY concluded that they want to become a student council that can be trusted by the students.
“2020 was a confusing time for students since every class went virtual for the first time in Ewha history and protesting for the partial return of the tuition fee,” E!NERGY concluded. “To move forward together during these challenging times, we promise to represent the students’ voice and respond as quickly as possible to the demands.”