RSA elects new president, VP

RSA elects new president, VP

The Resident Student Association (RSA) elected middler Darren Conine as its next president Wednesday, beating out incumbent junior Smith Anderson.

Freshman industrial engineering major Mark Epstein, who ran unopposed, was elected vice president for housing services, replacing middler finance and insurance major Christina O’Sullivan.

Conine, an international relations and comparative politics major and three-year RSA member, cited his experience serving as a Resident Assistant (RA) and on the Regional Board of Directors which, he noted, has given him many student connections.

In his speech, Conine outlined his goals if elected, which involved improving relationships between RSA and other influential student organizations, including the Council for University Programs and the Latin American Student Organization, and increasing RSA’s influence and exposure among the student body.

Conine recalled his early days in RSA, and said he wants to bring an inviting atmosphere back to the organization.

“When I joined RSA as a freshman, I felt welcome,” he said. “I want general councilors to feel the same way.”

One major change Conine would like to see is giving RA funding back to ResLife. The funding has been controlled by RSA, rather than ResLife, since the early ’90s, and there is division within RSA as to whether the funding should be returned. Conine noted that although he would like to see it accomplished, it will not likely be achieved during his presidency.

Lastly, Conine asked the council to have confidence in his abilities.

“Give me a chance to show you what I can do,” Conine said.

In Anderson’s speech, he thanked the General Council for a great year and said, “No matter what the outcome, I had a great time.”

Anderson’s major goals were to increase the amount of RSA programming and membership.

“My biggest goal is recruitment. I’ve seen a decent amount of people here, but we can double that,” he said.

As a freshman, Epstein acknowledged his youth and inexperience with the organization, but said he’s eager and willing to learn about the position and stressed his passion for the group as a whole.

“I really love the Resident Student Association,” he said. “I felt like this is a community that I really enjoy.”

Although he hasn’t clearly outlined specific goals for the upcoming year, Epstein said he generally hopes to “work toward better life in the residence halls at Northeastern.”

Although ultimately disappointed with the outcome, Anderson said he will throw his full support behind Conine, and believes RSA will continue to be the successful student organization it always has been.

“Darren is a very capable person,” he said. “I do believe he has the ability to carry the momentum we’ve had during my involvement with RSA. He’s got a lot to learn about the new position, but all presidents do.”

Conine is eager to take charge of his new position.

“[I] can’t wait to start moving things along,” he said. “I really just want to jump right into it.”

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