LFTE: Hold ASCSU representatives accountable with your vote


Collegian | Trin Bonner

Serena Bettis, Editor in Chief

Editor’s Note: All letters from the editor reflect the views of the editor only and do not represent a stance taken by The Collegian.

To all Colorado State University students,


It is absolutely imperative that you vote in the upcoming Associated Students of CSU elections. 

ASCSU is our student body government, but they’re not the folks who plan dances and decorate hallways like your high school student councils. 

They oversee the allocation of $57 million in student fees each year and have roughly $1 million they can spend on their own operations and other initiatives, like events and programs passed through the senate. 

In recent years, one of the most significant things the ASCSU senate did, in my opinion, was allocate $61,000 to the Rams Against Hunger permanent food pantry that opened last year. As a beneficiary of a RAH program, I cannot express how essential that resource has been to improving my well-being on campus. 

In 2021 the senate also passed a bill to create signs near bathrooms directing students to a map of all gender-inclusive restrooms on campus to help students feel safe and comfortable while going to classes. 

The ASCSU senate also provides funding for fun programming events, like ice skating on The Plaza, and the executive branch approves the student fee funding received by Rocky Mountain Student Media Corporation.

These ASCSU members — your classmates — also act as representatives of all CSU students to the CSU System Board of Governors, the Fort Collins City Council and community and even the Colorado state legislature. 

According to CSU SOURCE, there were 28,580 students enrolled at the Fort Collins campus as of September 2021. Yet only 6.17% of the CSU student body elected the current ASCSU leadership, which encompasses the president, vice president and speaker of the senate. 

That’s 1,854 students who voted. 


To put that into some perspective, The Collegian has approximately 3,000 weekly print readers. 

With so few students voting for the ASCSU leaders, I’m not confident they properly represent the whole student body.

Moreover, who is holding them accountable? When fewer than 2,000 people on a campus of 28,000 select the name of the next ASCSU president, there are 26,000 other students who aren’t paying much attention to anything that president does. 

Throughout my three years of covering ASCSU senate meetings, elections and controversies, I’ve watched our student government get a lot done. And I’ve also seen them spend countless hours and late nights not doing much, instead arguing internally about procedural rules and what they often refer to as a toxic environment. 

In recent months, the Collegian staff has been inundated with complaints from ASCSU members about relatively insignificant decisions we make, like our use of older file photos for weekly ASCSU senate coverage.

Additionally, if you look toward The Collegian’s Letter to the Editor page, you’ll see recent letters we’ve published, both signed and unsigned, that discuss some of these issues from the perspective of ASCSU members. 

There are certainly more urgent issues that ASCSU members could address instead of airing personal grievances at every turn. 

Because of my personal experiences seeing the way ASCSU (dis)functions, I am urging all CSU students to vote. If you’re reading this: Vote. Tell your friends to vote, tell your classmates to vote and tell the student next to you in line at a coffee shop to vote. 

I have to stress that this is my own opinion; it does not reflect the opinions of the rest of the Collegian staff, and it is not a reflection of Collegian policies. 

This is my perspective based on more than three years of experience working at The Collegian and, quite frankly, being fed up with and discouraged by the gossip and drama that come out of ASCSU. I believe it’s important to acknowledge the good with the not-so-good, and it’s the not-so-good that is some of the best motivation for voting.

Give your student government representatives more motivation to hold themselves accountable and work for the betterment of student life on campus. 

Voting for all students will be open on RAMweb April 3-5. It takes less than five minutes to log in, select who you think is the best candidate and submit your vote, even if you have a bad internet connection. 

All students, graduate and undergraduate, full- and part-time, graduating in May or in their first semester, can vote in the ASCSU elections. This is, without a doubt, an election in which every vote can make a difference.

Serena Bettis, editor in chief

Reach Serena Bettis at editor@collegian.com or on Twitter @serenaroseb.