Students should take advantage of opportunity to elect University faculty to Congress

Did you know that our own Illinois 13th Congressional District is one of the most competitive districts in the U.S.? Did you know that our district also includes four other major public universities in addition to several other private schools and community colleges?

That’s a huge student population, and we contribute to the reason why this district is so competitive. Since we are also such a large sector of the voting population, we can help determine who wins the election and which candidate will best serve students, faculty and the University community.

This election cycle we have the unique opportunity to elect one of our own to Congress and ensure that the University of Illinois will always have a strong voice in Congress. My friend and University professor, George Gollin, is currently running for the U.S. House of Representatives.

George is a first time candidate and not a career politician. I’ve spent the past few months getting to know George, and I can honestly say that he will be a welcome alternative to the gridlock and argument that we are currently witnessing in Washington.

I, like many other political science students, was interested in interning with a campaign, and I was excited to discover that a University professor was running. I set up a meeting with the campaign and I was pleased to meet George personally.

He impressed me with his willingness to engage students in thoughtful discourse. He didn’t try to twist my questions to best fit his ideology. George answered honestly and from the heart, something that I respect more than anything else in an individual.

I’ve learned that this sort of honesty is a rarity among current members of Congress.

George isn’t a politician. He isn’t running to seek power, money and fame. He’s a physics professor who’s been teaching for over 25 years.

One of the reasons George is running is because he witnessed first-hand what happens when dirty money gets involved in politics. His frustration with corruption in government is one of the main reasons he decided to run.

George is a scientist, a teacher and a watchdog, and I think we need more of all three in Congress.

As students, we need a representative who is willing to fight for us, and someone who is familiar with higher education issues, such as the rising costs of education and the burdens of student debt. George also acknowledges that climate change is a real issue and that we can do things to combat it, unlike our current Rep. Rodney Davis, R-13, who believes we should do nothing about it.

It’s time we elect one of our own to Congress. If you’re not registered to vote, register today. If you are registered back home, it’s time to change your voting address to your campus address.

As students, we can single-handedly elect our next congressional representative.

For me, that choice is University physics professor George Gollin.

Mitch Dickey,

sophomore in LAS.