For students at Oak Bay High, fall of 2015 will mark not only a transition to a new building, but also a new student council.
Eight candidates, running as pairs, vied for the honour of leading not only the council, but also the Oak Bay High student population into the new school.
This year’s student council campaign featured more candidates than previous years, with Noah Bastedo, Nikki Frazer, Isabella Lee, Robert Lee, Harry McGuire, Jacob Moreno, Avalon Suriano and Ruby Tang all seeking nomination.
The dedication of these passionate youth is evident as you stroll the busy hallways lined with campaign posters, incorporating ideas ranging from presidential promises to popular culture allusions.
“Once a candidate is elected, they represent Oak Bay by being the face and voice of the students,” said Corrina Simpson, Oak Bay High’s student council advisor.
“Everything we do at Oak Bay High is designed for students to achieve their best, whether it is in the classroom, on the stage, or on the sports field. Students are given opportunities to practice and meet their personal best.”
Throughout the campaigning week, the candidates promoted varying platforms.
Robert Lee and McGuire pledged to revitalize the council, engage the student body, create an avenue for student feedback and increase communication and collaboration between clubs and events.
Frazer and Suriano strived to run an efficient and organized council, install suggestion boxes, reach out to the student body through contests and clubs and implement acquired feedback.
Isabella Lee and Tang aimed to listen to the students and polish internal naming, while Moreno and Bastedo set out to increase spirit days, school participation and celebration opportunities.
While each pair utilized a distinct formula to blend different elements together, they all endeavoured to create a smooth, seamless transition to a new school and a mechanism for student feedback.
Following more than a week of campaigning and a full day of voting, Moreno and Bastedo topped the polls in the student council presidential election.
“We need to make sure to increase awareness of student council and try to accomplish some positive things,” said Moreno.
“We can start to do things with the school and student body,” added Bastedo. “People can come to us if they have problems and we can work on fixing them.”
The dedication of the candidates served to spark interest among their classmates with voter turnout reaching a record 62 per cent.
“From the beginning, our year showed more interest in the process than any of the past years,” said Frazer. “The grades realized that it’s important to have someone they elect to represent them, especially with all the new changes and challenges to come.”
“I’m glad I got to take part,” said McGuire. “It has taught me a lot.”
“I got to know more people around the school and was able to work on my public speaking skills,” added Suriano. “I’m very glad I ran.”
“It gave me the opportunity to be more confident in myself,” said Isabella Lee.
The election was an opportunity for the candidates to explore and learn new skills, with each of them having something to celebrate. And the campaign is not the end for the candidates. Some aspire to pursue politics or law, while others aim for other careers. However, they will all make positive contributions to the Oak Bay community now and in the years to come.