New student government takes office

The room was filled with cheers and tears as the 2005-2006 U student government was replaced by a new group of student leaders.

At a ceremony on April 27, the incoming Associated Students of the University of Utah elected representatives and appointed officials took an oath of office, pledging their allegiance to the U and promising to uphold Redbook, the ASUU constitution.

Those taking office included President Jake Kirkham, Vice President Toby Collett and Senior Class President Mindy Chidester, along with 20 Executive Cabinet members, 16 senators and 48 General Assembly representatives.

The student body elected all officials, excluding the Executive Cabinet, during March elections. The Executive Cabinet was appointed by Kirkham and Collett and approved by the ASUU Assembly.

Kirkham and Collett said now that they are in office, they plan to strongly pursue their campaign promises.

“We’ve made a lot of promises the last couple of months, and I truly hope we can fulfill those promises,” Collett said.

Kirkham spoke about how great an honor it is for him to serve as student body president.

“For someone as common as I (am) to have the opportunity to serve as student body president is simply amazing,” he said.

Kirkham also said he is honored to work with his new Executive Cabinet.

“We appointed the (former) student government prosecutor to be our chief of staff, Rick Pehrson. He actually prosecuted against us and got our names taken off the ballot,” he said. “We have since forgiven him, and we look forward to working with him.”

Kirkham also spoke about the positive relationship he hopes to create with The Daily Utah Chronicle.

“To The Utah Daily Chronicle, we love you,” he said. “We will provide you with the facts you need to write your stories, and we hope you will foster and promote ASUU student involvement and opportunities in your columns.”

Former ASUU President Ali Hasnain said he thinks the Kirkham administration will do a fine job next year.

“We could not feel that anybody more capable could be coming in and taking the jobs we’ve respectively held,” he said.

Former ASUU Vice President John Poleman said that although student politicians are very different from one another, they are united in their dedication to the U.

“The one thing that is a common denominator among every student that steps into ASUU and puts their time in at ASUU, I think, is service,” he said.