Student Government fails to replace Mesta

In the wake of David Mesta’s recent abrupt resignation, Minnesota State’s student government tried — but ultimately failed — to choose a new vice president, and will try again next week.

The candidates in the election for vice president of Student Government were Speaker Douglas Roberts and Senator Emedo Chinedu Godswill. Godswill has served on various positions on campus, such as vice president of the African American Student Affairs Association. He desires to be a support to international students especially.

“For a position like the vice president of the student government, you need someone that has experienced diversity in the sense of having experienced what it is like to be an international student and also a domestic student. I’ve had both experiences,” Godswill said.

Roberts acknowledged awareness of the tension that has been rife in the senate recently and seeks to heal that, as well continue supporting student senators in their various projects in making campus life better for their fellow students.

“I know that we’ve had some hard times in the recent few weeks that are a struggle to get through, so the first step that I want to bring forth is some of that healing,” Roberts said.

After holding discussions and a vote, neither Godswill nor Roberts managed to secure the 60% vote of the entire student senate necessarily for the office of vice president. The student senate decided to hold another election next week, leaving room open for new candidates in the race for vice president.

The vacancy occurred when Mesta resigned Oct. 19. He declined to discuss publicly his reasons for resigning, saying only, “I chose to resign because I think the decision was catching up to me and I made a decision for myself.”

In response, student government president Sierra Roiger said: “It’s entirely up to each and every individual when they feel it’s right for them to part ways with Student Government and I respect that decision.”

In other student government news:

President Inch delivered an overview about conditions and major projects at MSU. He said this year is MSU’s 155th anniversary. As part of the celebration, he is collaborating with Roiger on the possibility of a collage displaying portraits of members in the campus community. The idea arose from a collage that photographer Josh Madson made of Mankato residence.

“Our thinking was we should engage our campus and take a stamp shot of us this year of all the people that want to have their portraits done, so we have a video collage of who we are at this moment and time in our 155th birthday,” Inch said.

Inch said a legislative bonding team visited the campus to discuss the idea of replacing Armstrong Hall and the funds for it. He said the concept would be having the Memorial Library undergo renovations in the next few years to allow for more learning spaces and interact with  the replacement building for Armstrong Hall.

“The other opportunity is between the two buildings,” Inch said. “I would like an outdoor classroom, a place that has interaction space for most of the year when we can go outside; but also a place where we might be able to do augmented reality demonstrations about things that are going on inside the building.”

Inch said some ideas are to replace Armstrong with an amphitheater or discussion spaces.

“I would like to see winter activities in there, such as an ice rink,” he said.

Inch said MSU has launched its strategic plan called Destination 2030.

“This plan was developed over two years to focus on where the university needs to go to best support our students and to think mindfully about how our students progress once they leave campus,” he said.

Destination 2030 has four pillars. One of the pillars is that MSU will commit to being a leader in transformational education. Another pillar is to ensure that MSU is a community of care, where all students have a sense of belonging.

Header photo: President Inch talked to the Minnesota State Student Government after the recent resignation of Vice President David Mesta. (Nathanial Tilahun/The Reporter)

Write to Tracy Swartzendruber at

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