Erasmus University’s Central Elections Office called the voter turnout for the recent Faculty Advisory Board and the University Council ‘extremely low’. Out of all eligible student voters, less than 11 percent voted.
The low turnout percentage is not an isolated incident. The letter stated “In a continuing trend, the Central Elections Office has observed that this year the turnout percentage at a worryingly large number of faculties was very low”. And the letter does not even mention the faculties where no elections were held due to an insufficient number of candidates standing for elections. This year, this was the case at two faculties.
Elections at five faculties
University Council elections were held at five of the seven faculties. Elections were unnecessary at ESL, and the Faculty of Philosophy because there were just enough candidates, or too few, for the number of seats available. Only three faculties held Faculty Advisory Board elections: Medicine, RSM, and ESE.
In total, 2683 students voted for the University Council. That is a few more voters compared to the previous year. The student with the most votes this year is RSM’s Nadine Nieuwstad with 365 votes. She was also elected to the University Council last year.
The Central Elections Office considers this to be an ‘undesirable situation’ because it does not reflect the Executive Board’s wish for participation in decision-making to play a more prominent role.
The Central Elections Office will shortly conduct a further evaluation of the elections.