My name is Matt Nickson and I would like to be your student body president. I want the Yale College Council to place greater emphasis on student issues and activities, as well as outreach to students and student groups. Feel free to call me at 6-0266 or e-mail me at if you have any questions about my platform.

First, I want the YCC to focus heavily on student issues. The YCC should press Yale Dining Services to leave all the dining hall doors open at night, so that we have places to enjoy free coffee, tea and cereal while we socialize and study. Other schools, like Rice University, already enjoy such an arrangement, and Harvard even serves students a midnight meal. The Berkeley College dining hall was open last year, and it became a great place for people to chill with their friends and meet new people. It’s time we get all of Yale’s dining halls open at night.

It’s also time the YCC did something about the exorbitant prices and lack of variety at Durfee’s. Since Yale refused to renew Krauszer’s lease, it has become impossible to find cheap midnight snacks within reasonable walking distance of campus.

What’s more, it’s time we make Cross Campus Library a 24-hour library, especially during midterm and finals season. That way, you won’t have to worry about getting kicked out at 2 a.m. when you have research to do for a term paper due the next day. On a related note, I want the YCC to pressure the administration to improve non-emergency medical care at University Health Services. From personal experience, I know it can take forever to get an appointment there.

Second, I believe the YCC should reach out much more to student groups. As president of the Yale Political Union last semester, I made sure the YPU co-sponsored events with the Yale Democrats, BSAY, YIRA, MEChA, Despierta Boricua, LASO and AASA, among other organizations. If elected, I will make sure the YCC lobbies the administration hard and long on behalf of student groups. I want to raise the UOFC maximum possible allotment for student groups — the current $600 a semester is too low.

I also would like to reach out to cultural houses. To promote greater sensitivity and dialogue on ethnic issues, I endorse Li Yun Alvarado’s ’02 recent proposal to increase the number of ethnic counselors on campus from 12 to 17. I am also a staunch supporter of Cultural Connections.

Third, I want the YCC to put together a fall rock concert, coordinate Spring Fling, and host frequent YCC student forums on campus issues. During my time at the Yale Political Union, I helped bring a number of speakers to campus, including former CIA and FBI Director William Webster, Alaska Gov. Tony Knowles, El Paso Mayor Ray Caballero, Sierra Club President Jennifer Ferenstein and former New York City Mayor David Dinkins. Getting a good rock band is important, and I would like to aggressively survey the student body this spring to determine whom to invite. That way, we can get started with invitations over the summer.

My campaign is about putting student issues first. The current president, Vidhya Prabhakaran ’03, has set us on the right path. Now, I hope you’ll vote Matt Nickson.

Because La Reforma starts with you.

Matthew Nickson is a junior in Berkeley College. He is a former editorials editor of the Yale Daily News.