Quinnipiac student wins local election
Every election year, college campuses, including Quinnipiac, host get-out-the-vote rallies, and student political activism is boosted for the moment. For sophomore Ben Chalfin, political activism is more than simple voter registration drives or community service events. As the newest Democratic Committeeman for Metuchen, N.J., Chalfin is a walking contradiction to the infamous declaration by the Princeton Review, which ranked Quinnipiac high in the category of “Election, what election?” in the past.
Chalfin went to his polling place to vote in the June 2009 primary election. It was then that Chalfin decided to file as a write-in candidate after noticing the lack of any options in New Jersey District 3. In the end, the media production major won the seat with a whopping two votes, one from his mother, the other from his sister.
When asked how his new elected office has affected his life, Chalfin said, “My schoolwork has not been profoundly affected, but I feel that I am more engaged with politics and my community. My parents’ encouragement helped bring me to accept the position after the election.”
Most students are puzzled when Chalfin tells them he holds elected office.
“My friends were shocked, and originally believed it was a joke,” he said. “Students continue to be intrigued with the decision I made and the election I won.”
Every second month, Chalfin attends committee meetings with every member from the New Jersey districts. The committee plans events, brings out the vote and maintains contact with important state officials.
“This has given me the opportunity to meet with large scale politicians and make connections I had previously not imagined,” Chalfin said.
Chalfin said he isn’t simply in this for a mere 15 minutes of fame. He sees politics as playing an integral role in his future.
“I hope politics can help shape my future, as well as the future of our society,” he said.