Campaigning is like a stage play. You’ve got the university classrooms as the stage, candidates as the actors, campaign support team as the crew, and of course the voters (students) as the audience that they all need to please.
In several universities and schools in the Philippines, it’s campaign season for their student council elections. Though my personal belief is that we should always stick to the issues and go beyond the personalities involved, it’s still interesting to analyze and talk about different types of candidates who we usually watch, listen to, and engage with during this campaign season.
So based from my experience both as a candidate and a voter, here are 10 Types of Student Council Candidates that you can encounter in your schools:
This candidate knows what s/he’s talking about. S/he has a compelling vision, very empowering, has substance, good grasp on issues, etc. S/he’s there to really win the elections.
Confidence is good because it gives the voter an assurance that the candidate is well prepared for the battle but sometimes, candidates go overboard. This candidate speaks as if s/he has the monopoly of wisdom, power, and the epitome of what service is all about. S/he speaks badly about her/his opponents.
Speaking about confidence, now you’ve got a candidate who thinks that s/he was sent from heaven above to solve the problems of the university and the nation. S/he like that ‘savior’ who walks and talks and gives the impression that “hey vote for me, I’m already giving you a favor so c’mon.”
Sometimes when the campaign season is on hype already, with all the black propaganda, plus add your personal problems, we just want to see and feel an aura of a candidate that will spread positive vibes. Yup, this candidate shines brightly with her/his smile, from the moment you see her/him walking by the corridors of that moment when s/he speaks in front of you, really captivating. However, a word of caution to the voter, beyond her/his smile, consider also her/his substance.
Especially that summer is about to begin, isn’t it rare to find a candidate who campaigns whole day for like two weeks in the university but still appear fresh? This candidate appears as if s/he has no pores, doesn’t sweat, no chance to be oily, her/his fragrance is like part of her/his entourage. I bet some voters may ask her/him about their beauty secret.
Quite frankly, most candidates do not just go in front of you to campaign without even preparing. They usually undergo rigorous trainings before the campaign. Some are given particular packaging that will be marketable to the voters, but despite all these, there are still some candidates who remain true to the voters and to themselves. They maintain their personality and stay natural. Ordinary students can easily relate to this candidate. This trait is commonly seen on independent candidates.
The ‘Who-You’ Candidate
As I’ve mentioned, some, if not most candidates, are packaged to a particular brand that may be marketable to the voters. So this type of candidate appears to have been in a boot camp for sometime. Like imagine someone who joined “The Biggest Loser” and you’ll just say, “no way, that’s really you?” Change is good as long as it highlights the good side of the person and not transform a candidate into some new person who may not be recognizable even by the friends of the candidate.
The Insta-Kind Candidate
Speaking of change, this candidate who may be known for being snobbish or arrogant is now your friendly neighbor! S/he appears to be your ideal best friend. S/he shakes the hands of everyone and creates a connection to the voters. Wait and see after elections if you’re still a friend on Facebook.
‘Mema’ (May masabi) Candidate
Let’s be honest, not all candidates are at par with our ideal ones. Some are kind of obvious that they were just forced to be part of a slate or some just really wanted to run even if s/he lacks training or substance in general. You can determine this candidate whenever you ask a relevant question but her/his response is just pure BS or the common phrase would be, “I’ll get back to you on that.”
The VIP Candidate
This candidate makes you ask yourself whether or not you’re really in a university campaign of students or not. This candidate walks with an entourage of people. It’s like always a parade whenever s/he approaches your spot. This candidate commonly hails from a group of people who considers the student council as their symbol of power in the university.