Scott Petty for GAPSA president

The University’s graduate student government needs a dedicated, transparent reformer.

University of Minnesota students can begin voting Wednesday for next year’s student government leadership.

This year, the Minnesota Daily Editorial Board endorses Scott Petty as the next president of the Graduate and Professional Student Assembly for the next academic year.

Petty has been active in University student government for the past five years, most recently serving as vice president of the Council of Graduate Students. Petty ran a write-in campaign last year and garnered 35 percent of the vote.

While he is not as close to GAPSA’s leadership as challenger and GAPSA Vice President Alfonso Sintjago, Petty’s more distant relationship with GAPSA may be prove to be an advantage.

GAPSA has not been without controversy this past year, with the contentious election of its current president and COGS splitting from the group.

Petty told the board he plans to address GAPSA’s problems — which go back further than this year — by restructuring the voting power of the general assembly and executive board. With funding cuts looming, Petty said he won’t take a stipend and he may cut other leadership stipends.

Sintjago has made admirable moves within GAPSA this year, including supporting the Council for International Graduate Students and a revised leadership structure. Students have two well-qualified candidates to choose from this year. However, given GAPSA’s tumultuous history, Petty has the strongest long-term approach in creating an efficient and fair student government body.