by Angelique Siy
Hanszen College senior and Student Association President
Daryl Shorter presided over his first SA Senate meeting last Monday. The
meeting was brief: There was a smattering of announcements, a discussion about
online voting, no appropriations and many missing representatives, since many
colleges have not finalized their elections.
After the meeting, the
interviewed Shorter. Regarding the goals
he has set for his administration, Shorter said he and the new Senate were
"looking into a lot of possibilities, ideas that were brought up during the
campaign that ... are viable," like the universal ID card.
"I've already spoken to some of the [former] candidates about helping me to
implement their ideas," Shorter said. "They reacted warmly and said that they
would help in any way they could."
Regarding elections, Shorter conceded that it is "unfortunate that a lot of
times, people end up voting for the person with the best posters. I personally
believe that the election should be run based solely on our ideas, but this
isn't a perfect world."
also asked how the new student leader felt about student
involvement on campus. Shorter said, "I think that the role of the SA, in a lot
of ways, is to pick up the slack for the colleges. Colleges provide you with a
social community setting among three to four hundred other students. The SA
should act to bring the eight colleges together [so] they can express ideas
about the university regarding student life and, also, academic concerns. I
think that by [working together], that we can help unite the campus even
Shorter discussed a variety of other issues during his interview with the
. The following is an excerpt from that interview:
: Do you think forums are useful? Do you think that this is
actually a good way to instill dialogue, or should this be done at the college,
the student level or the organizational level?
: It should be done at
levels. ... You can try to
bring about dialogue at the university level, but so many people have a hard
time getting out of their colleges, getting out of classes. At the college
level, for example, it might be easier to ... facilitate discussion than to try
to coordinate [interaction] at a university level.
: And your role models?
: Maryana [Iskander, Wiess College senior and former SA
president] is a role model -- also [Hanszen senior] Allison Fine. But more
often than not, just [looking at] what I've seen at the college level, I
decided that effective
college management as a college president could
probably be applied to the university as a whole in some meaningful ways,
because the kinds of issues people are most into are those issues that affect
I feel like there are a lot of issues that I want to tackle personally in the
SA that will probably touch a nerve with some of the students at some core
level. For example: Minority recruitment of faculty and staff is an issue for
many minority students on campus that touches a nerve with them.
You saw tonight at the SA meeting, [that a discussion on] safety and security
at Entrance 3 touches a nerve, touches something in your inner being. Everyone
wants to be safe. No one wants to feel threatened, so by dealing with the type
of issues that people feel passionately about, maybe we can erase some some
of the apathy that people feel.
: On the SA presidential ballot, every single candidate, or pair
of candidates, was a minority. What is your reaction to that, and how did you
feel as a minority-and-yet-not-minority candidate?
I thought it was extremely interesting. ... I think it's because normally, when
people think of Rice, they don't think of it as the most diverse place -- it's
not. People normally characterize Rice as a Southern, white, upper-class ...
: ... And especially under-represented in blacks and
: Exactly. So I mean, it shows that we're finally making our
steps toward bettering our racial and cultural situation.
: Rice isn't a particularly racial campus, just because most of
us, as students, seem to be apathetic or of the mentality that "if you don't
bother me, I won't bother you," and so race conflicts aren't in the forefront
of any issue here on campus.
: But what's also interesting about that is that people aren't
usually ready to take race and culture into consideration in any type of
interaction, which is interesting, because as Cornel West said, "If you don't
see me as a black man, you don't see me." So you get both sides of the coin,
where people here are more willing to deny culture, deny race entirely, and
not deal with people as cultural entities, which I also feel is not right.
: Maryana had a two-year-long term and accomplished many
different things. How are you going to fill her shoes?
: Maryana told me, don't try to fill her shoes, and I am
not trying to fill her shoes. I think Maryana was especially powerful
this last year, because if you ask her about what she did her first year,
she'll say, "My first year, I spent making mistakes, learning the ropes,
learning basically what to do and what not to do in a lot of situations," so
that by the time her second term came around, she "knew what to do, [she] could
go in and get things accomplished."
Unfortunately, I don't have my first year -- I have to come in and bump along,
and hopefully, I'll make all my mistakes early in the beginning, so that I can
have some smooth sailing toward the end. In terms of my abilities -- filling
Maryana's shoes -- Maryana has obviously left me huge shoes to fill, and the
range and depth with which she dealt with university issues I would definitely
try to continue across the board. ... I would try to have a student say in just
This item appeared in the News section of the February 28, 1997 issue.