Next Student Government president, vice president sworn into office


Jack MacDonald/Iowa State Daily

Newly appointed president and vice president, Cody West and Cody Smith, pose for a photo following the President’s Dinner. The dinner signified the transfer of power from Cole Staudt to West and was held at the Scheman Building.

Alli Weaver

Newly sworn in Vice President Cody Smith stands at the front of the room.

In front of hundreds of Iowa State leaders he holds his hands at his side, raising one as he prepares to take his inaugural oath.

He looks across the room and at Chief Justice Kevin Boeckholt, who is swearing him in.

“Let’s do this,” he says.

Smith is no stranger to Student Government, previously serving as a senator and public relations chair this past academic year. He and Cody West, who was sworn in as president Thursday evening at the President’s Dinner, looked to the future during their inaugural address and have high hopes for their administration.

One of the biggest pushes by West and outgoing President Cole Staudt was student safety, which West and Smith plan to continue this upcoming year, along with reinstating Iowa State traditions and reinventing residency in Ames.

In his inaugural address, West touched on the cancellation of Veishea, a subject still a raw nerve to many in the Iowa State community.

“As I am sure all of you in this room are aware, we used to have a celebration called Veishea,” West said. “Sadly, this event was cancelled due to riotous behavior by Iowa State students on a Tuesday night in April, and although many of us may be frustrated with the cancellation of Veishea, it is important to note that the negative culture surrounding the event needed to be put to a stop.”

West and Smith also hope to increase awareness in regard to campus events by creating a holistic university calendar.

“We as students often feel disconnected from what’s happening at Iowa State,” West said. The university calendar will be a way for students to stay informed about academic, athletic and student organization events, he said.

In a farewell speech by Cole Staudt, he outlined the accomplishments that he and West had made during the past term.

This included the changes made to the Dead Week policy, which prohibited testing and quizzes on the Thursday and Friday of Dead Week, the standardization of printing credits across campus, which saved about 1.1 million pieces of paper used in a semester and the ongoing effort for medical amnesty, which would, if passed through the Iowa House and signed by Gov. Terry Branstad, protect underage students from legal persecution in the case of a medical emergency induced by alcohol consumption.

The President’s Dinner is an annual event that is intended, Staudt said, to serve as “a time for us to look back at the last year and kind of turn and pivot to the future.”

Each Student Government-funded student organization was notified of the dinner first, with the distribution of two reservations per student organization, Staudt said. Staudt also sent out a Google form on Twitter after the emails.

“It’s to bring our student organization leaders, students, administrators and faculty together to show what Student Government can do, has done and will do,” he said.

Jacob Zirkelbach, chief of staff for West and Smith, backed Staudt’s sentiment.

“It’s always good to get everyone back together, bring everyone together and talk about the vision,” he said.

Each Iowa State student pays $36.75 per semester in student fees, adding up to more than $2.3 million per year, which Student Government is in charge of distributing to student organizations, events and other services according to student needs and requests.

Funding from the Student Government is primarily received through the annual allocations process, a yearly estimate of the amount that student organizations and other services will receive during the next fiscal year, and through funding bills. The Student Government originally budgeted, through 2017 annual allocations, $4,000 for the President’s Dinner event.

However, upon discovery that the only campus location available was the Iowa State Center, the Student Government passed a line item transfer bill on March 22 to remove $2,667 of funds from the costs of the Big XII on the Hill Conference allocation, and to add this money to the President’s Dinner funding, adding up to about $6,667 to be spent on the event.

The money that was spent for the event went toward food for about 200 people and the room reservation in the Scheman Building.

The election of West and Smith saw a nearly 1 in 5 turnout from the student body. It was announced the two would serve as president and vice president ahead of spring break 2017.