By Ashley Shickler
The CNM Chronicle asked students how they feel about the upcoming general election, what changes they would like to see occur, and whether they plan to vote.
Some of the things that the students interviewed want to see changes in are; education, gay rights, bike safety, and homelessness.
Ansley Emeanuwa, accounting major, said that he is absolutely voting.
“It’s important to vote if you want to see change,” he said.
Education is something that he would like to see a change in. New Mexico is ranked 49th in education quality, and a lot of people are having a difficult time with finding jobs, he said.
One of the biggest concerns for him is the fact that the Governor has been declining major companies such as Tesla and Amazon, he said, “Doing all of this could change the state of New Mexico,” he said.
Emeanuwa said that he plans to vote for Michelle Lujan Grisham in the upcoming election.
“I am absolutely planning on voting,” said liberal arts major, Julia Beckel.
Beckel said that she feels it’s important to vote because it’s a “life and death” kind of election, as she is transgender.
“After the Republicans lost in the supreme court on gay marriage, they latched onto transgender people as their next target,” she said.
She can’t imagine any transgender person not wanting to go out and vote this year because they know what’s in stake for their own lives, Beckel said.
Nursing major, Donald Williams, said, although he needs to do more research on the candidates, he is planning on voting.
He would like to see a change in more space for bike riders. Although he hasn’t been in New Mexico for very long, the one thing of importance that he noticed is bike safety, he said.
“I noticed that a lot of drivers who make a turn, end up in the bike lane and I am concerned for my safety because I ride my bike all the time,” Williams said.
Voting is important because that’s the best way to see change, said Shylowe Honeycutt, business major.
The changes she would like to see are helping the homeless. She passes several empty massive buildings where she feels would be a perfect place to gather and help people so they’re not literally sleeping on the concrete, she said.
In order for students to vote, it should be a fun thing, she said.
“I know when I went in to vote for the first time it was intimidating. I wasn’t sure of the process and the older people didn’t make me feel welcome. I would want it to be informative and less stuffy,” Honeycutt said.
The students interviewed also expressed interest in the candidates coming to campus to talk to students and that it would be a good way to get people to vote.
“The candidates should talk to students here. I think we should have a discussion board outside. Let’s go to the dorms and see what the students want,” Ansley said.
“Having the candidates coming onto campus is a very good idea, and this is a wonderful way to reach people, especially the younger people who don’t tend to vote as much. I think if the candidates were here and you had a chance to ask them a question, it would give you a much better sense of who the candidate was and what they were all about,” said Beckel.
“When you make it a gathering for the community and making it where it’s somewhere you actually want to be, not a lecture hall sitting down, somewhere you can stand up, listen to someone, and be active, would definitely help the situation,” said Honeycutt.
“I feel a big way to get more students to vote would be having a voting booth here on campus. I feel that a lot of students don’t know where to go to vote, because a lot of them come from high school, so having one on campus would get a lot of people to vote because it’s convenient and right there. Also, talking to the students and giving them their point of view and what their goals are for the entire election would be a way to get more students to vote,” said Williams.
The next general election is scheduled to take place on November 6, 2018.