Associated Students of CSU executive office candidates faced off
Wednesday night in the Lory Student Center Theatre. Cord Brundage,
a member of the ASCSU Elections Committee, moderated the
The candidates began by stating their main message.
“There are tons of students that want to be involved but don’t
know how,” said Brittany Burke, presidential candidate. “We will
bring a new perspective.” Her running mate is Kristen Schowe.
Katie Clausen, current ASCSU vice president and her running mate
Ben Goldstein, current ASCSU director of student services,
emphasized the action ASCSU has taken this year, such as
“We want to change the culture of ASCSU to be more open to
students,” said Dustin Zvonek, presidential candidate and current
ASCSU senator. “I think ASCSU needs to be more representative.”
Zvonek is running with Kyle McCarthy, also an ASCSU senator.
Mike Bystrom and Dave Hoff said ASCSU needs to be more
representative of students and less of a “good ol’ boys” club.
The candidates were questioned on current issues by members of
the election committee and Jesse Lauchner, current ASCSU
Zvonek and McCarthy encourage the implementation of more
incentives for volunteers and bringing in more commercial
Burke and Schowe agreed, saying they want to award credit hours
for volunteers as well as incentives such as free food or movie
Clausen and Goldstein placed more importance of bringing more
riders to the program. Their ideas included parking vouchers from
the city, adding more hours for RamRide to run and ensuring
volunteers are properly trained.
Bystrom and Hoff said that riders shouldn’t be taken on a
first-call, first-serve basis, but routes should be plotted to make
the service more quick and convenient.
Burke and Schowe said they want to extend the hours for the Z
lot at Moby, as well as create new lots.
Clausen emphasized that while there are plans for parking
garages in the future, something needs to be done for students at
the university now. She said that Monday, Wednesday, Friday and
Tuesday, Thursday passes could be sold at reduced prices for
students who only have classes on those days.
Both Burke and Clausen said that they would support the building
of an off-campus parking lot and a bus system from there to get
students to campus.
Bystrom and Hoff said they would encourage the use of alternate
transportation such as biking to alleviate parking congestion.
Zvonek and McCarthy said they would want the student opinion
before committing themselves to one plan or another.
Clausen and Goldstein said they would not support an increase in
student fees by the administration.
Bystrom and Hoff said they would want students to vote
independently on what student fees should be increased or
“This university is on the verge of receiving a $20-million-plus
budget cut,” McCarthy said. He said student awareness of the budget
is most important.
“We’re not in high school any more, I don’t think we need to
allocate more money,” Hoff said. He said that if elected he would
do no more than maintain the current status quo.
Burke and Schowe said they would bring family weekend and
homecoming together to encourage more alumni participation. They
also believe club sports should see more support.
“What the students know ultimately will dertmine what they are
involved in,” Burke said.
Both Zvonek and Clausen said they wanted to work with the city
to encourage more local pride for the university.
Audience members were next allowed to ask questions.
One asked the candidates’ personal volunteer hours with RamRide.
Bystrom, Hoff, Burke and Kristen admitted they had not volunteered
for RamRide yet. Zvonek said he had volunteered two nights.
McCarthy, Clausen and Goldstein said they participated almost every
time RamRide ran.
Another question asked how candidates planed to deal with state
issues such as TABOR, Amendment 23 and Gallagher, which deal with
state budgeting for higher education.
“I’m not going to sit here and blow sunshine up your rear, I
have no idea about any of these,” Hoff said, explaining that there
isn’t enough power in ASCSU to make a difference.
Burke said universities in Colorado should create a united front
to lobby at the state capital.
The other candidates said they would continue to work with
ASCSU’s current state lobbyist.
The executive candidates finished the evening summing up their
overall stance on the issues.
“We are the most complete ticket. Between the two of us we have
experience in all the branches of ASCSU,” McCarthy said.
Burke restated her belief on many issues discussed earlier in
“Students need to be represented,” Burke said.
Clausen drew on her record, saying that she and Goldstein had
already begun planning.
“We believe our platform is the most thought-out,” Clausen
Hoff said that some things are more important at a
“We need to work at education first and foremost,” he said.