McGann/Nemzer for UAP/VPUndergraduate elections represent the best chance for the majority of undergraduates on campus to influence student government. This year, The Tech endorses Matthew L. McGann ’00 and Lex Nemzer ’00 for the respective positions of Undergraduate Association President and Vice President.
This year’s contest represents a battle between two visions of the UA. The Kartik M. Mani ’00/ Rita H. Lin ’00 ticket emphasizes a vague idea of fostering campus community through increased social opportunities and programming, while the McGann/Nemzer ticket relies on the abilities of the two candidates to act as advocates for students to the administration. This year demands an activist UA to represent and guide students through the dramatic changes that have occurred over the past year and a half.
We believe that the McGann/ Nemzer ticket will represent a more activist voice on campus while at the same time working with administrators to effect real change. McGann has served on multiple committees and knows the ins and outs of the administrative process; Nemzer was a significant force behind the orange ribbon campaign.
While the orange ribbon campaign didn’t make effective change on campus, it was activism, and some activism is better than no activism at all. The Mani/ Lin ticket seems indecisive and lost on the central issues of alcohol policy and undergraduate housing. Mani and Lin seem satisfied to succumb to the ways of the administration rather than to question its decisions.
McGann and Nemzer also seem better prepared to handle another important issue: student funding. McGann’s position as treasurer of Association of Student Activities gives him and inside view of how funding works within the UA, and we believe he can better create a more equitable funding distribution to student groups than the Mani/ Lin ticket.
To the credit of Mani and Lin, they have been involved extensively in encouraging social activity on campus -- through, for instance, Spring Weekend, -- and both have experience procuring funds from the Institute for these activities, but we believe that promoting social activity is not the real responsibility of the Undergraduate Association. The Tech agrees with the McGann/ Nemzer ticket that the UA should distribute money to groups in order to foster group social activities rather than taking money to spend on a single event.
The choice of candidates this year is a choice between a social UA and a student advocacy UA. The Tech believes that this particular year, student advocacy, representation in key issues transforming the Institute, takes precedence to fun. We believe that McGann/ Nemzer ticket will best change the UA into such a student advocacy group.