COLLINS WINS PRESIDENCY: After a Close Election, Adler To Be Vice President

In an extremely competitive election, Tantum “Teddy” Collins ’08 was elected Student Council President for the 2007-2008 school year. Joining him as Vice President will be Jonathan Adler ’08. After learning of the final voting results, an enthusiastic Collins said, “I would just like to say that I am ecstatic and honored to have been granted this opportunity, and I would like to thank everyone who has supported me and made this possible, as well as all of the other candidates for making this such a terrific race.” He added, “I look forward to working with Jon and Joey, both of whom I’m sure will do a terrific job, and I hope that we will have a productive year.” “I’m thrilled to be serving the school as Vice President,” said Adler. “It’s certainly an honor to be elected to help lead the Student Council.” He continued, “I’m excited to work with Tantum to achieve our platform goals and to continue the work that Danny Silk has begun. I am confident that we will be productive, efficient and accessible community leaders.” This final election concludes an 11-week campaign, which began Winter Term, when the candidate pool was narrowed to twelve, to six and then to the final three. On Tuesday, the final three candidates participated in an hour-long debate on WPAA. The next day, they presented speeches at All-School Meeting detailing their ideas, qualifications and love for Andover. During the WPAA debate, Alex Heffner ’08 grilled the final three, Jon Adler ‘08, Joey Mensah ‘08, and Teddy Collins ‘08, with “hard-hitting, pointed questions”. In his introductory remarks, current president Danny Silk said, “I’ve been very impressed [with the candidates] and especially what struck me were you’re ideas. [The presidency] is whatever you make of it. Don’t be afraid to take risks.” After the candidates reflected briefly on their campaigns, Heffner began with a question concerning the fairness of Dean of Students Marlys Edwards. Mensah pointed out that her approachability from the student’s perspective seems intimidating while Adler said, “She has the role of the ‘naysayer’ to keep to the focus of the academy forward. She has essentially kept the school running.” Collins followed suit with agreeing that it is difficult to pass student initiatives through her but is a great dean nonetheless. The next topic of discussion was the Commons renovation set to start next year. Jon Adler explained that he has worked with commons workers to include breakfast in the fourth meal packages starting next year because of the farther walk to the hockey rink, where meals will be served during renovation. “The small things we can do for the students really presents a great opportunity for student council to step up to the plate,” he said. Heffner continued, “What will be your first policy change to [Andover]?” Mensah stressed the importance of change in the work duty system, highlighting the inefficiency of the lower pool. Collins’ proposal included online sign in, one-card key system, and student voice forums. Adler stressed communication, PAnet reformatting, and increased familiarity with the DC system. Adler advocated a student council radio show where the president could take in calls to appease concerns and take ideas. A lightning round consisting of short one-word answers revealed some trivial information about the candidates, such as the number of sixes they have received and their one-word description of Barbara Chase. The next day students crowded into the Chapel to listen to the candidates’ speeches. Each speech provided insight about what each candidate would bring to the presidency. All three opened with humorous anecdotes before addressing more serious matters concerning student life. Teddy first jokingly addressed confusion about his accent and said, “It’s actually the result of seven years of English education. School there was very different from Andover. Cricket and Quidditch were mandatory, and my favorite class was Defense Against the Dark Arts.” He then explained his original inspiration for the online sign-in system. He said that for the past two years, he has continued to develop an online sign-in, along with students, house counselors, administrators and technology staff, and that the code will be completed before the end of the term. Collins also talked about his efforts to continue student-faculty dinners and to make purchasing Grasshopper tickets easier. He also proposed a Student Voice Forum. “Most importantly, this community has made me aware that while there are 17 capable and creative students on Student Council, there are 1096 capable and creative students at PA,” said Collins. “I would be honored if you were to bestow upon me the privilege of representing you for one more.” Adler opened his speech by talking about his first experiences at Andover. He then advocated making the DC system easier to understand, enhancing student and Student Council communication, and holding a Winter Term Club Rally. Said Adler, “I have always been a leader at Andover…My leadership positions as Prefect, on the Phillipian and with Jewish Student Union have given me the chance to work with my peers and with faculty. I’ve been a regular at Student Council meetings all year [and] I would be honored to represent you.”