Frequently Asked Questions

How many spots are available on the Senate?

There are 44 positions to be elected. Senators can be from any major and can be undergraduate or graduate students.

Aren’t there 50 seats on Senate?

Yes. Six are reserved for students in their first semester at GVSU. They will be filled by an application and interview process administered by the Senate Resources Committee next year.

Do incumbents keep their seats?

No. All terms are for one academic year. Senators may run for re-election.

When I vote, do I vote for President and Vice President?

No. The Student Senate Cabinet (President, Executive Vice President, etc.) is elected by the Student Senate after the general elections and not at-large by the student body.

Do I have to serve on a committee?

Yes. All senators have to serve on one of the six committees with the exception of the President and Executive Vice President. Committee assignments are made by the Cabinet after senators express which committees they are interested in.

When can I start campaigning?

Once you have filed out the application to run for Student Senate at this link, you may begin campaigning. You should see your information posted on the Student Senate Candidates Guide.

Is anyone going to see my platform statement?

Yes. Your platform statement (and your campus involvements) will be printed in the Lanthorn and will also be available on the voting website.

How long should my platform be?

Platforms longer than 200 words will not be accepted. Please keep your platform succinct and to the point. The Lanthorn advertisement will have very limited room – the shorter the better (or you may get cut off!)

Is all of the voting going to be done online?

Yes, at

Student Senate elections will occur from Monday, September 14 at 8 a.m. to Sunday, September 20 at 11:59 p.m. During this time, all GVSU students can vote for up to 10 candidates of their choice.

Do students run as a Democrat or Republican or member of another party?

No. Student Senate elections are nonpartisan. We encourage students to look through the platforms of all candidates to find those that they support. All students can vote for up to 10 candidates.

If I am elected, when do I start? And how long is my term?

All elected senators will be sworn in on Thursday, September 24 at 4:30 p.m. The term of senators ends at the end of the Winter semester in April.

Where can I find out more information about the Student Senate?

You can visit our office in 0040 Kirkhof, visit the Student Senate website, or call 616-331-2333 to talk to any Senator about the Senate.  

What is the Elections Commission?

The Elections Commission is comprised of Student Senators that are not running for re-election. This group is chaired by President Eric-John Szczepaniak and makes decisions based on alleged violations of the Campaign Rules & Regulations. They can be contacted at