Mar 242004
Authors: Ben Bleckley

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.

Student Fees

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

the debate.

“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.

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