U students elect new leadership

Student government should prepare for next year after students elected new leaders.

University of Minnesota students voted for Joelle Stangler to lead the Minnesota Student Association and Alfonso Sintjago to lead the Graduate and Professional Student Assembly last week. Next year’s leaders should begin preparing for ongoing issues and bringing their platforms to life.

In our endorsement, the Minnesota Daily Editorial Board noted the ambition of Stangler and running mate John Reichl. The two boast a far-reaching and multi-dimensional platform, and we’re excited to see how the two will change campus. Stangler told a board member that she is already working on the logistics for upcoming projects.

While the board did not endorse Sintjago, we believe he is well-qualified to take the reins of GAPSA. However, as we noted in our endorsement for Scott Petty, GAPSA has ongoing problems with structure and its balance of power. Sintjago shouldn’t fear digging deep and reforming GAPSA.

Outreach is also a critical issue for student government, and this year’s elections continued the trend of poor voter turnout, likely a reflection of lack of awareness. Both elections had turnouts hovering around just 10 percent of the potential voter pool.

While it’s difficult to be knowledgeable about student government candidates, students must realize that these people have the power to change their lives in tangible ways. Low turnout is especially concerning when such a small percentage of students make up the entire voter pool. Student leaders should bolster outreach efforts, but students must also meet them halfway.