Letters

When I was not asked to serve on the Soto staff, I started my own political party here on campus in preparation for the next year’s election. The goal was to shadow ASPSU and point out how much better we were at this than them.

Impeach Soto When I was not asked to serve on the Soto staff, I started my own political party here on campus in preparation for the next year’s election. The goal was to shadow ASPSU and point out how much better we were at this than them. I had no idea the “middle school games” I was playing (O.K., I admit it) would lead to massive rule violations concerning the allocation of our $12 million in student fees. Rudy did not comment on the allegations for a reason, because they are true. If anyone would like to see a presentation on the many rule violations, just e-mail me at [email protected] We found some amazing things, such as the rules state that two SFC advisors must participate at all meetings. Over $6 million was distributed without any adult supervision. And actually, I am attacking a lot more people than Rudy Soto. For example, Aubrey Lindstrom was on last year’s SFC. On Oct. 16, 2006, she shot down a reserve request from the “Student Parent Services” for doing the same thing that she later allowed Rudy to do. Just check the SFC minutes from that day. We got all the proof the J-Board will need. Alex D’Aurora Soto responds I write this to hopefully clear up any confusion on campus regarding the remodel of the ASPSU office. My staff and I decided to remodel the office because, up until recently, it was a place only to hang out. When my staff and I first began moving into the ASPSU office we encountered a working environment that did not present the professional demeanor we intended to portray. It is important to point out that the amount of money reportedly spent on the office remodel ended up being much less than initially reported. We spent a total of $2,475.54 out of the $10,000 reserve request from the Student Fee Committee. For the past weeks, the Vanguard has carried a couple stories about this remodel and the issue raised by a few students. Alex D’Aurora decided to file for my impeachment a couple of weeks ago. Since there are no legal arguments in his appeal, it comes down to a difference of opinion. D’Aurora and I agree about many things, but unfortunately this is not one of them. Since there are no legal arguments in his appeal this is merely a difference of opinion. When Mr. D’Aurora applied for a job in my administration, I asked him about his goals. He wanted the same thing I did: To actually accomplish something in student government. When I chose somebody else for the position he wanted, I hoped he would keep working with me, but instead he has chosen to channel his disappointment through negative means. Now we have an office, a place to be productive and accomplish our campaign promises. From our administration on, ASPSU officers can do their jobs efficiently, without having to worry about working without basic office supplies or falling through the couch. Please come visit us anytime because, most importantly, this is your office too. Rudy Soto ASPSU President Senior Capstone issues Portland State University has the reputation of a school designed for the working student-which may explain the higher average student age. In order to meet the needs of their students, PSU offers a wide variety of evening, online and distance courses. One PSU website even states: “today Portland State University is a leader in distance and alternative education in Oregon.” Yet, despite PSU’s emphasis on distance, online and alternative degree participation, the Senior Capstone requirements contradict the progressive message behind PSU’s distance education programs and are disrespectful to the working student. A working student in this context is an individual enrolled in at least one course who maintains a paid position on or off campus. All Senior Capstone courses require additional work within the Portland community–often these volunteer hours must be completed during the business hours of the community partner. This often means working students must take time off of work or requires the use of vacation time. The University Studies Department is living in the past. They need to create new courses that meet the needs of their students. Perhaps the University Studies Department could allow seniors to tailor make their own community service project. Not only would this increase the personal relevance for each Capstone participant, it will reinforce PSU’s support of the working student. Becky Tengs Pell Grant increase not serving students While on the surface this appears to be a major step in assisting students [“Finally, some help” Aug. 1], what it doesn’t say is that ultimately this will actually hurt students. By reducing the special allowances banks receive it also creates a situation where banks will no longer be able to afford to pay consolidation companies to loans. In turn, consolidation companies across the country (i.e. thousands of jobs) will be forced to close. The end result? Borrowers will no longer be contacted to consolidate their loans (which is free, carries no credit check and reduces their payments by up to 50 percent and can reduce their interest rate by as much as 1.5 percent). Sure the lender could consolidate the loan, but why would they? Lenders are typically ill-equipped and will have little interest in helping a borrower as there will be no outside competition. Most students don’t even realize this is their federal right. So students can enjoy the measly $500 of Pell grant money, and when they are stuck paying 8.25 percent for their loans and can’t find someone to consolidate their loans, they will ultimately pay thousands more for their loan than they had to. This is just another classic example of Washington putting their personal battles ahead of the American public’s needs. Anonymous