Graphic by Weston Hirvela
As campus adapts to the changes of hybrid student life, many of the former – and some new – political organizations have begun to meet and plan for future events.
Despite many of the recent restrictions, the Young Democratic Socialists of America (YDSA) and Students of Liberty have made an effort to make an impact on campus politics.
YSDA has come into the new semester after a string of successful events following the campus shutdown. Although most are virtual, they have seen a great amount of success with their latest endeavors.
“We have to be more flexible to the changing rules on campus due to social distancing, but having virtual events can be effective,” said Tanvi Sharma (’21), YDSA Co-Chair.
YSDA holds their meetings at 7:30 every Thursday on the Chapel Lawn. Their meetings are welcome to all students interested in the political process, and ideas of socialism. The YDSA is among the most active clubs on campus and hosted a fruitful fundraising event over the summer.
“We had a successful conspiracy themed event that was entirely virtual. It was incredible to see the effort our members put into their presentations, and we were able to raise so much money over Zoom!” said Sharma.
The Conspiracy Night event was conducted entirely online, and members were able to raise over $500 for R.I.S.E. Advocacy. The YDSA has worked with R.I.S.E. in previous semesters, and intends to hold further Conspiracy Night fundraisers in the future.
As prior established groups make plans, a recent political student club has formed to hold open discussions.
A new student political organization – Students for Liberty – has been approved by Student Congress to move forward in the process of becoming a permanent campus group. Students for Liberty is a local political organization organized by students of multiple political positions, and has plans to establish themselves in the campus community in the near future.
The organizations aim to welcome students of all backgrounds to their discussions. Students of Liberty meet Monday nights at 9:45 in DOW Science Center.
Students for Liberty was organized by several students over the summer to provide an outlet for third party ideas on campus.
“When you come to college, it’s the time to explore who you are as a person. Understanding who you are before you get involved in the election process is important,” said Austin Popp (’21), Students of Liberty Co-Founder.
“The aim of our group is to not force libertarian values on campus. It’s to help students find their beliefs,” said Popp.
“We are not exclusive to libertarians. We want to accept people of all creeds and have them feel welcome. The goal of our group is to have conversations about modern issues,” said Ethan Zalac (’22), Students for Liberty Co-Founder.
Students for Liberty plans to set up tables for voter registration on campus before the 2020 election in November. The Students for Liberty also plan to work closely with YDSA to open voter registration tables to encourage the voting process.
As November draws closer, YDSA and Students for Liberty will plan on hosting regular meetings and encouraging students to venture forth and continue developing their political philosophies.