Hurricane Sandy and the presidential election were the focus of this week’s Temple Student Government General Assembly meeting.
After Sandy left many parts of New York and New Jersey in shambles, Student Activities, in conjunction with student organizations, are hosting an online food drive to benefit hurricane victims.
Associate Director of Student Activities Chris Carey along with program director Adriane Reilly discussed the food drive, which will benefit the Salvation Army of New Jersey.
The food drive, which runs from Nov. 5 to Dec. 5, is a competition between student organizations to see who can raise the largest amount with all the proceeds benefiting the Salvation Army of New Jersey.
The drive was originally purposed as a November food drive due to the nature of the season, but after Hurricane Sandy the office redirected the purpose.
“We figured this online module of food collection is a more effective way for student organizations to succeed in their food drives, so we had things all set to go when Sandy came through the Northeast. Then we decided to adapt the purpose of this food drive to benefit the people who are most affected,” Adriane Reilly said.
The office is trying an online food drive, compared to a traditional food drive, to help unite the fundraising efforts of student organizations and attempt a new method.
“The problem with doing it online is that you have to develop a new strategy around it,” TSG Student Body President David Lopez said. “A social media strategy with getting information out through Twitter, Facebook, and email…It will be interesting to see how well it really works and I think we just need to push it and advertise it the right way.”
Although Reilly does not have a monetary goal set for the total relief efforts, she does have one goal in mind.
“I know Temple students are motivated and kind hearted and I would really like to be able to showcase the efforts of our student organizations,” Reilly said. “[The goal is] to just be able to show that our students noticed the need created by Hurricane Sandy and took action to help.”
During the second portion of the meeting, Lopez, who is the former president of Temple College Democrats and was an intern at the White House during the summer, presented students with information about voting on Election Day.
“Generally speaking, Temple students don’t realize how much of an impact they have in an election,” Lopez said. “When you look at the amount of students that go to this campus and the amount of students who turn out to vote, the numbers are not indicative of what Temple students stand for.”
Lopez discussed the polling locations, times and the standing of the voter identification law, which states that in Pennsylvania, it is not required that a voter present a valid form of identification, unless it is their first time voting at that particular location.
Lopez said TSG is also having volunteers both in the residence halls and off-campus helping students learn the location of their designated polling place.
“The goal of our university now needs to be motivating students to get out and vote and actually get them to care,” Lopez said. “We can have so much more strength as a university with the local legislators, if people actually looked at this university and the students who attend this university as a very important voting bloc.”
Students can find out their registration status and polling location at canivote.org.
Laura Detter can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.