Of the students, by the students, for the students
imon Sinek once said, “Leadership is not about the next election, it’s about the next generation.” In a country where the general public defines leadership through youth rather than experience, where the state of affairs is being modified through this new form of leadership, the students at St. Joseph’s College of Commerce are similarly being affected by young and enthusiastic leaders.
These leaders are the elected members of the Student Council, and the Student Council Election is an annual tradition of the college.
Just like every other election, the Student Council election began with the filing of nominations. Students who felt that their capabilities met the requirements for various posts filed their nominations by the 6th of June, 2014. Enthusiasm and initiative rather than recommendations drove students to contest for the posts.
If filing of nomination was the easy bit, campaigning proved to be challenging for all the candidates. Spread over two days the election campaigning changed the atmosphere of the campus. Colourful posters decorated the walls of the college, while catchy slogans caught the attention of every student. Campaigning involved marketing one’s capabilities in the most creative way, through classroom campaigning, rallying in the basketball court, and finally, public speeches. Students listened carefully as each candidate tried to convince the audience of their abilities, in order to gain their confidence, and eventually their votes.
At SJCC there is a voting criterion which is strictly followed. Students of first year B.Com and BBM, being new to the college, are not allowed to vote, but are exposed to the activities of campaigning to get a sense of what to expect if at all they would like to stand for elections in the following year. Voting was done by all students of second and third year B.Com and BBM.
Elections for the Student Council were conducted on 11th June, 2014. Electronic ballot machines were used for voting to ensure smooth and error free voting. After two days of campaigning and convincing, students of 2nd and 3rd year B.Com and BBM, voted for their favourites. Voting took place in the old and new auditoriums. The candidates were invited to vote first, each one cleverly not forgetting to vote for themselves, before voting for the other posts, followed by all the other students.
What followed was the most anxious moment for all candidates: results. The results were announced at 3 pm in the basketball court, by Ms. Veenu Joy, Student Governor. Applause and cheer welcomed the new council for the Academic Year 2014-15.
Winner’s Words: The Student Council’s Address
Apart from the above mentioned posts, the students of the postgraduate department of the college elected Benjamin Michael as the PG Coordinator for the Academic Year, on 17th June 2014. Similar to elections of the student council, each class elected class representatives. Various associations of the college were formed, with office bearers duly elected.
Benjamin Michael, PG Coordinator
On interaction with a few students, one student rightly said,
“The process of voting makes each student feel important as each vote counts. All students are treated equally and are encouraged to make an informed decision.”
The Investiture Ceremony:
Election of a Student Council is not enough, a formal introduction of the new council to the students is necessary. Keeping this in mind, the Student Council Inauguration was held on 18th June, 2014. Not only was this ceremony an investiture for the Student Council, but also for the heads of various associations as well as the class representatives. The dignitaries for the ceremony were Rev. Dr. Jerome Stanislaus D’Souza SJ, President of the Bangalore Jesuit Educational Society, Rev. Dr. Daniel Fernandes SJ, Principal of the College, Ms. Nirmala Joseph, Vice Principal, and Ms. Veenu Joy, Student Governor. The programme began by invoking God’s blessings with an invocation dance, followed by a solemn prayer delivered by Fr. Roshan Pereira, Campus Minister of the college. Ms. Veenu Joy then formally welcomed the gathering.
Dressed in suits and sarees, looking like leaders ready to command, the students then took the oath of office, solemnly swearing to perform their duties to the best of their abilities, following which, badges were given to the student council and association heads. Rev. Dr. Jerome Stanislaus D’Souza was then invited to address the gathering who inspired the students to follow their dreams and lead by example. This was followed by the Principal’s address, wherein he emphasized that every student is a winner, and should work towards contributing to the society. Finally, the President of the student council of Mount Carmel College was invited to address the gathering.
The programme concluded with the Vote of Thanks being delivered by Tresseta D’Cruz, President of the Student Council of St. Josephs College of Commerce, followed by singing of the college anthem ‘Faith and Toil’. The students were all excited about the responsibilities that have been handed to them, and an eventful year for the college is anticipated.
– Pritika Sood & Mario D’Vaz