Clark and Boeke begin focus for next year

by Robert Koch

For Matt Clark, Rachel Boeke and nearly 30 friends, a 6:45 p.m. phone call transformed the mood from pensive reflection on past student government achievements to enthusiasm for the year ahead.
Clark and Boeke became president- and vice president-elect for the Minnesota Student Association, taking 1,210 votes. Laura Taken and Aaron Street took second place with 609 votes, followed by Jared Christiansen and Mike Franklin with 438 votes.
Total votes cast were 2,996, in comparison with last year’s 3,066 votes.
“I think it’s our personality, Matt,” said Boeke, a junior in the Bachelor of Individualized Studies program.
Clark and Boeke campaigned on improving student transportation and food service at the University. But neither would attribute their victory to issues alone.
“We pressed the flesh and talked to as many people as possible,” Clark said.
Clark, a marketing junior and current MSA vice president, said gaining results in student government is an ongoing process.
“The stadium is not going to be built and funded in one year. But if we don’t start now, who’s going to start?” Clark said.
He also cited his work in instituting the 10th Avenue Bridge Circulator.
Clark emphasized marketing rather than politics as the way to resolve problems facing the University — his tool, the survey.
Clark said he will meet this morning with the vice president of Aramark in an effort to improve University food service.
Afterward, Clark will fly to San Francisco to interview with Wells Fargo, where he hopes to work for the summer. Regardless, he said he’ll stay abreast of MSA issues.
As vice president, Boeke said she will work to improve student housing options; she spent four months living with friends and in her car during the 1998-1999 school year.
Present at Wednesday evening’s victory party was current MSA president Ben Bowman, who advised Clark and Boeke to surround themselves with people they trust, consult others when there is conflict and to make a decision and to stick with it.
“Those people, if they want to change the system, they can run next year,” Bowman said, commenting on those displeased with the coming year’s student government.