BY KASEY CHARRON
On Tuesday, May 23, Canton High School seniors attended an assembly that registered those who are of 18 years or older to vote, and informed the class on the voting process.
Social Studies Department Head Nora Mocarski lead the assembly, during which she encouraged all students to become engaged in the process of town politics.
“The focus is to get people to get engaged in the system because we are the system,” Mocarski expressed. “One of the things I had in my speech [at the assembly] was the mantra “We the People” from our own constitution… these [local officials] are ordinary citizens who run our town and if these people didn’t step up then you would have no government.”
Guest speakers at the assembly included the Town Clerk, Linda Smith, and the Chairmen of Canton’s Republican, Democratic and Independent parties. Brian First has served as the Chairman of the Canton Republican town committee for ten years, and is also an elected official as Chairman of the Canton Board of Finance.
“I do believe students should make the effort to be educated about all levels of politics,” First explained. “Well before they can vote, their lives are profoundly affected by political decisions made at the town, state and federal level.”
Registering to vote also meant that students could become members of political parties, or remain unaffiliated. Canton High School senior Maddy Brown chose to join the Democratic party.
“I had researched the different parties just to see like what their platforms were,” Brown explained. “I felt like I aligned myself more with the Democratic party’s platform than the republican or independent parties.”
Of the 120 students in the senior class, 70 registered to vote on Tuesday. Among them was high school senior Brandon Peters.
“I feel accomplished,” Peters noted. “I’m very happy to say I’m officially a Republican.”
Senior students who missed registration may do so online or by going to the Canton Registrar of Voters Office (4 Market Street, Collinsville). Elections are held at Canton High School every year on the Tuesday following the first Monday in November.
Students who are attending college may also vote in absentee, a process explained by Smith. Absentee ballot applications are available from the Town Clerk’s Office or Registrar of Voter’s web page.