How Do I Run?

Are you interested in running for a position in the MSU but have no clue where to start? Start here!

Step-by-Step Guide

Step One: Nominate Yourself

This is the easiest step. Once the nomination period opens for your election (check our Calendar and Page for these dates), just pick up a nomination package from the MSU Main Office, MUSC 201, fill in your personal info, get 15 signatures from your voting pool (e.g. first year MSU members for FYC, any MSU member for SRA Science, etc.), and bring your nomination form back to the MSU Main Office before the nomination period closes.

Step Two: Read the Rules

Part of your nomination package will be the rules for your election that you (and your campaign team if you have one) have to follow as a candidate. A very important part of these rules is that you cannot campaign before the start of the campaign period. If you break the rules you could be fined so make sure you know them!

Step Two-and-a-Half: Assemble a Campaign Team

This is a half-step because not everyone uses or needs a campaign team. Most often candidates assemble them to help them out during the Presidential Election. This election can involve a lot of effort from the candidate to try to reach all MSU members, so a campaign team can be an invaluable resource. If you wish to assemble one, make sure that you register your campaign team members with the Elections Department, that your team knows the rules just as well as you do, and that no one campaigns before the campaign period!

Step Three: Attend the All-Candidates Meeting

This meeting happens the evening each nomination period closes and is where you will get information about your election, can meet your fellow candidates, and can ask any questions you have to the Chief and Deputy Returning Officers. (You might even find out that you've been acclaimed!)

Step Four: Campaign

There are many ways that you can campaign. The most common methods include posting posters, talking to classes, making a Facebook page, and talking to people around campus. You can also get creative with campaigning, just make sure you're always following the rules!

Step Five: Get the Results

At the end of polling for an election, the Elections Committee will meet to discuss complaints against all of the candidates and to levy fines if they so decide, before anyone has found out the results. At the conclusion of the fines meeting the Elections Committee will view the results, the MSU will publicize them, and you will be notified of any fines that you have.

Step Five-and-a-Half: Appeal Your Fines

If you wish to fight your fine(s), you can submit an appeal to the Elections Department following the election and then make your case to the Elections Committee at their appeals meeting. If they decide not to accept your appeal, you have one more opportunity to appeal and that is to the Electoral Appeal Board.

Step Six: Relax

Whether or not you are successful, you deserve a break! And keep an eye out for the next MSU election around the corner.


Tips & Insight 

Former MSU President, Mary Koziol created a guide on running in MSU elections, focusing on presidentials. This guide includes Mary's insight as well as insight from other students who have participated in elections. 




Past Candidate Documents

Chukky Ibe, 2017 Presidential Candidate, 2017-2018 MSU President | Collection of Platform, Planning & Branding Documents

Shaarujaa Nadarajah, 2017 Presidential Candidate | Collection of Platform, Planning & Branding Documents

Sarah Jama, 2016 Presidential Candidate | Platform Document

Jonathon "Toni" Tonietto, 2016 Presidential Candidate | Platform

Ehima Osazuwa, 2015 Presidential Candidate, 2015-2016 MSU President | The President’s Vlog – Election Platform (Transcript)

John Tambakis, 2015 Presidential Candidate | Collection of Platform Documents


Past State of the Union Documents

Each year, the MSU publishes its State of the Union document, outlining a vast amount of detail concerning the projects, advocacy work, services and financial affairs of the McMaster Students Union.

2017 MSU SotU

2016 MSU SotU

2015 MSU SotU

2014 MSU SotU

2013 MSU SotU


Past President Year Plans

Each MSU President creates a year plan, outlining their goals.

Chukky Ibe, 2017-2018

Justin Monaco-Barnes, 2016-2017

Ehima Osazuwa, 2015-2016

Teddy Saull, 2014-2015

Siobhan Stewart, 2012-2013

Matthew Dillon-Leitch, 2011-2012 (Coming Soon)

Mary Koziol, 2010-2011

Mary Koziol, 2010-2011 (Additional Document)


Further Questions

If you ever have any questions, remember you can always email us at elections@msu.mcmaster.ca or come by during our office hours!

Contact Details

Chief Returning Officer
905-525-9140 ex. 24118

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