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Student leaders prepare for turnover

Amanda Michaels | Thursday, April 1, 2004

Though the almost blank staff roster, empty office and brand new constitution may seem like part of an April Fools’ Day prank, for Adam Istvan and Karla Bell, this is no joke.

After weeks of preparation and days packed full of meetings and interviews, the two will finally take office as the new student body president and vice president.

“Excited is the only word to describe what we’re feeling right now. Well, tired might work too, but definitely excited,” said Istvan.

With approval of the new Student Union Constitution coming on the eve of the turnover, the pair must be prepared for changes in the organization of their office and staff.

“We’re familiar with the proposal [which was not passed at the time], and the biggest changes seem to be the bringing of the Office of the Student Body President into the Senate, and the changing of the Chief of Staff position into the Chief Executive Assistant, which will be held by Dave Baron,” Istvan said.

Baron, Istvan and Bell have been interviewing students for staff positions since Monday, and plan on having the majority of their team in place by next week. Upwards of 50 candidates, equally distributed among class levels, applied.

“I was surprised and pleased by the number of applications,” said Istvan. “I think this shows that people want to get involved, and see potential for next year’s government to accomplish some great things.”

With the new term starting, Istvan and Bell are putting their priorities in order so as to most efficiently get things done. They said that they hope to resolve the issue of staplers and hole-punches in the computer clusters before the year is up, plan on moving forward with the DVD rental area in LaFortune and want to explore the option of getting a bus that would go from campus to popular off-campus residence areas on Friday and Saturday nights.

“Our biggest priority is going to be seeing how the new government works and evaluating it for any glaring errors, so that we can get changes through right away,” said Baron.

Though Istvan said he knew of no great weakness in the Hallahan-Lao presidency besides the departure of Hallahan halfway through the term, he also said that his administration would focus less on making changes to student government and more on giving back to the students.

For today, the focus remains the aesthetics of the presidency – including a new office at their disposal.

“I can’t wait to tear down these posters and put up some Metallica and Def Leppard,” joked Baron.