Voter turnout rose to 23 per cent in this year’s IGNITE elections

Mar 16, 2023 | Campus News, News

Humber College and the University of Guelph-Humber has a student government following last week’s voting that attracted more students that in the recent past.

The results for for 2023-2024 are in. A total of 14 candidates ran in the election, and 7,061 out of 29,911 voters cast a ballot, a 23.6 per cent voter turnout, IGNITE said. 

IGNITE, the student union at Humber College and the University of Guelph-Humber, represents about 30,000 students and is handles more than $13 million worth of student fees.

This year 23.6 per cent of eligible voters — compared to about nine per cent last year — picked thye IGNITE board of directors.

Shanell Roy, who won with 43 per cent votes at Humber North, said this year the voter turnout was more because it is a post-pandemic year.

“We are coming from the era of the pandemic,” she said. “A lot of students are still shy, some of them are still in their shells”.

Roy said she didn’t expect her to win because she didn’t get many attendees at the Women’s Day event last week.

“I literally had a breakdown on campus because this is me trying to help them to build their professional portfolio,” Roy said.

She said her biggest fear is not being able to help the students.

“This fear will be stemming from students not having the courage to visit the IGNITE website,” Roy said.

The elections were held last week with a total of 14 candidates competing for the positions on the board of directors. The nine elected student representatives will serve Humber College North and Lakeshore campuses and University of Guelph-Humber students.

Angad Handa, who won with 14 per cent of votes at Humber North, said student advocacy will be his top priority as a member of IGNITE.

“There are some issues and concerns like on-campus jobs, the parking lot issues, and many other issues that need to get a limelight”, he said.

Handa said he has always been active in leadership roles as he was the captain of the cricket team back home in India.

He said as a leader he is someone who likes to work in a team.

“I would like to work with everyone and get their suggestions, their ideas and put work to it,” Handa said.

Navjot Singh, who won with 21 per cent of votes at Lakeshore, said his police foundations program inspired him to run for this election.

A man in a turban standing in front of a building.

Navjot Singh standing in front of a building. Photo credit: Courtesy Navjot Singh

“My program teaches me all about leadership and this election was an opportunity for me to get experience in leadership and serve the students,” he said.

Jenny Trang, who received 25 per cent votes at Guelph-Humber, said her top priority for the upcoming year is to be as transparent as possible with the students.

“I think it’s extremely important for the students to know what is going on with their student union and what decisions are being made for them,” she said.

Trang said she is grateful after winning as everyone has put in a lot of hard work during the campaigns.

“After two weeks of campaigning, I understand how much hard work every single candidate put into this election,” Trang said.

Roy said she is looking forward to working for student advocacy in the future.

“There’s so much more work to be done. And the good work must go on,” she said.

The North representatives on the Board of Governors are: Chair Jessica Urzua Cordon-Carrera Valle, Marisa Ulloa-Cornejo and Aksnoor Singh Kamboj. The Lakeshore directors are Neha Singh and Parul Yadav. Guelph-Humber directors are Fiona Mahadeo, Brittany Bartolome and Lauren Abela.