Past USC presidents reflect on being the big cheese

Nick Staubitz

Tuesday, April 7th, 2009

I jumped at the opportunity to weigh in on what the Western student voter should look for in a University Students’ Council president. I’m not claiming to be an expert; in fact, in hindsight there are many things that I would have approached differently in my term as president in 2004-05.

The first thing you need to know is it doesn’t really matter what candidate did before they were nominated. No amount of preparation can fully prepare an 18-24 year old for the position they aspire to assume.

This isn’t to say that prior USC experience isn’t a factor " it is " but it should not be a decisive factor. The types of decisions that a chair of the USC Board of Directors is required to make are far beyond anything you can learn by being a USC commissioner, council member or in a classroom.

I’m not suggesting you ignore candidates’ prior experience. Rather, I suggest you look at their experiences as illustrative of the president they are going to be.

The important question to ask is how they performed in their prior positions. Did they act in a manner matching your morals and beliefs? Were they kind, approachable and friendly to their colleagues? Those are qualities I would value above all others.

I understand that Western is a big campus and you may not have the opportunity to meet the candidates " however, it isn’t so large that a friend of a friend hasn’t had an interaction with one of the candidates.

Better yet, when walking through the atrium during the campaign, stop and talk to the candidates yourself and be your own judge of their moral character.

All the best to each of the candidates, you’ve already taken the most difficult step by choosing to run.
"Nick Staubitz

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