It can be all too easy at times to succumb to apathy in the face of great challenges. But one student, Junior Sarah Everton, looked at the broken, disorganized senate, and exercised her power as a student and as a citizen to enact change. Rather than write off the ASSU as a bureaucratic mess, Everton announced to the world that she would not lie down and accept things as they are. She would fight to fix them. She would wage a war, a war fought not with weapons but with ballots. Taking her place as a pillar in the House of Democracy, Everton spoke with Flipside reporters moments before casting her vote. “With this vote,” she said through tears, overwhelmed with emotion. “I become the voice of the people. I am the dream of Washington and Jefferson and Lincoln, realized. I urge all students reading this to wield the power that is your right, and speak out.”

Of course, the decision was difficult. Would she vote for the Exec slate that promised to begin a green initiative, safeguard students’ mental health, and protect the needs of clubs; or the slate that would support the environment, put students’ well-being first, and give student organizations more autonomy? Would she place her support behind the senator who was student body president in high school, or the senator who built schools in India?

“It feels good to be a part of something greater than myself,” gushed Everton after the vote. “I am proof that the system works. I’m so happy I was able to make a difference today.”

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