With the YCC set to absorb the Yale Student Activities Committee, it is imperative that next year’s director of events have the spirit and the enthusiasm to ensure that event-planning does not get lost in the traditionally policy-heavy world of the YCC.
Both Natasha Sarin ’11 and Mathilde Williams ’11 served on YSAC this year and possess the experience to assume this newly created position. But we believe Williams’ passion for Yale’s traditions and her level-headed demeanor would make her more effective in the long run.
Sarin is a co-chair of this year’s Spring Fling, and she argues that next year’s concert will not live up to its potential unless she is put in charge of it. But by all accounts, this year’s event has been mismanaged: Its planning has come down to the wire, and it is said to be over budget.
With the integration of YSAC and the YCC, the previous 36 representatives will be reduced to 24. In a year when fewer people will be asked to do more, we are not convinced that Sarin will work cooperatively on non–event planning duties. Her interests are specific and unyielding, and some within the YCC described her as frustratingly strong-willed. We saw these qualities on display earlier this semester when Sarin approached the News forcefully — and, we have reason to believe, dishonestly — to push her uncompromising ideas of Spring Fling into the paper on this page.
Neither candidate was impressive in their interviews, as Sarin at one point referred to Yale’s “6,000-plus undergrads,” a point of confusion unacceptable for a student government candidate. Williams, for her part, was not particularly eloquent in talking about the nuances of the YCC-YSAC integration and was vague in some of her other answers when we interviewed her. As a result, our endorsement has some hesitation.
But on the whole, Williams conveys a very different professional attitude from Sarin, and thus we think she will be a more productive presence within the YCC. Her plan to use this year’s Spring Fling selection committee as a model for increasing student involvement — and manpower — in the planning of other events is a prudent and inclusive step. And she seems genuinely enthusiastic about planning events for the sake of others, not for herself. This was apparent from her work reviving the Winter Formal and her interest in reviving the great tradition of Bladderball (which, it is worth noting, this newspaper called for last spring).
Considering she is in charge of this year’s Spring Fling, Sarin puzzles us with her “A vote for change” campaign slogan. But we agree with the sentiment: Yale should vote for change, and that change will come by electing Williams.