Students produced a live-streamed Election Forum for City Council candidates

Nearly half of the 35 candidates running for Cincinnati City Council in the Nov. 2, 2021, election came to Clifton Campus on Oct. 14 to participate in the candidate’s forum organized by Cincinnati State’s Student Government Association and the Black Male Initiative.

College Chief of Advancement Elliott Ruther started the two-hour Forum by introducing President Monica Posey, who welcomed the candidates to campus.

President Posey noted that hosting a forum for City Council candidates aligned with two of Cincinnati State’s strategic goals: enriching the student experience and engaging the College with the community.

Ruther said several candidates told him after the event that the student-led Forum was one of the best organized campaign events they had attended.

Student Christopher Johnson initiated the idea of bringing the candidates to campus, and then Black Male Initiative advisor Bryan Dell and Student Government Association President Shane Winslow worked with others to implement the plan.

Shane served as the event moderator, posing questions prepared by Cincinnati State students to the candidates. Each candidate had 60 seconds to respond to each of the questions.

The final Forum question asked the candidates to reflect on Cincinnati State’s role in the community. Several candidates mentioned past work with the College to help develop degree or training programs, or to support co-op and internships for students. Many described Cincinnati State as an important partner in the city’s success.

The Forum was live-streamed by two crews of students enrolled in the Audio/Video Production course “Multi-Camera Videography,” led by Professor Christian Appleby.

The student organizations also sponsored an essay contest in conjunction with the Forum, which was won by Associate of Arts major Kevin Lynn. In his essay, Kevin said forums like the one held Oct. 14 allow students to gain new perspectives, and also let politicians learn more about the community they seek to serve. 

Kevin said in his essay: “With forums the politicians are made aware of concerns of the community. Without these forums the politicians would have no clue what is happening in certain parts of their community.”

(Photo provided by Elliott Ruther)