Seniors work as judges for the Presidential election

Liza Magill, Opinions Editor

Twenty senior government students spent Election Day working as election judges at polling stations around the Twin Cities metro area. These students completed a variety of tasks and were a vital part of the efficiency of the election at these stations.

While working at polling stations, these students helped people vote and were there to answer any questions throughout the day. “Some voters aren’t completely familiar with the voting process so I explain what they need to do to ensure that they vote in a way that the machine will scan, and if they have trouble with the machine or with their ballot I tell them that the ballot has two sides so they don’t miss a side,” senior Elizabeth Vertina said.

After signing up through their government classes, students learned the rules for their specific polling station and began work. These students worked in different shifts depending on their availability, but some students started at 6 a.m. and others continued at the polling stations until the polls close at 8 p.m.

Throughout these seven-hour shifts, students worked at different stations to assist the polling station in a variety of ways. “When I first got [to the polling station] we set up the polling booths and the tables and then my first job was to hand out stickers and make sure the ballots all went in and were counted,” senior Theresa Cameron said. “My second station was registration, and my third station was a demonstration where I helped show how to fill out the ballots.”

Although the seniors did much work at the polling stations, they couldn’t help voters with everything. “If someone has a question about the wording of an amendment, I don’t have the authority to explain it,” Vertina said. “I have to direct them to someone else who has the authority to or else my explanation might be biased.”

Students from both Benilde-St. Margaret’s and St. Louis Park High School have worked at the Beth-El polling station for many past elections, helping the chairs run the station smoothly. “[How many students work at the station] depends on the individual voting place, but this is a huge voting place and so we’ve had at least two at all times,” said Nanette Malcomson, St. Louis Park polling station co-chair.

“It was definitely long, but it was a learning experience and I got to see all the behinds the scenes information…but it was cool and I’ll probably do it again,” Cameron said.