Student Body Vice President for Organizations Candidate: Richard Hoffberg

Running an organization is no easy task, and, Richard Hoffberg, who is running for the position of Student Body Vice President of Organizations, knows what must be done to make leading an on-campus organization a less daunting task. Hoffberg, who hails from Westchester, NY, is a junior who is majoring in mechanical engineering and minoring in social and political history.

Hoffberg has insight into the inner workings of student-run clubs, as he participates in several, such as the CMU Aviation Club, CMU Club Rowing Team, and Engineers Without Borders. He is also a brother of the Alpha Epsilon Pi fraternity. Hoffberg said in an email with The Tartan, “My involvement in a variety of different organizations has also made me think that I understand [the] structure, mission, and issues of many organizations on campus.”

Furthermore, Hoffberg has experience in student government, serving on the Undergraduate Student Senate and the Committee on Student Organizations (CoSO). He believes his time as a member of the Executive Committee in Student Senate has provided him with vital experience as a leader in student government, which he asserts will help him sit on the Student Government Executive Committee. His role in Senate has helped him learn “the structure of the [university] administration, realistic expectations and capabilities as a student at [Carnegie Mellon], and institutional knowledge of the university.”

Hoffberg has a detailed plan of action. First off, he aims to improve the Tartan Leadership Conference, an event he thinks “has a lot of potential to be effective at preparing organizations for the coming semester.” Hoffberg wants the conference to more heavily emphasize efficient and seamless leadership transition. He believes that one of the worst, and most common, issues organizations face is a disjointed transition of leadership and that this “hinders the amount of work done in a given semester.” He also sees the conference as a way to train club leaders to use the scheduling website 25live more effectively.

Another initiative that Hoffberg is pushing is more collaboration between “similar organizations to develop and share solutions for common issues” between those organizations. He is proposing a forum for similar organizations for student leaders to share feedback on their issues and try to work together to discover solutions to their problems.

Additionally, Hoffberg believes that there are massive gains to be made in the efficiency of campus meeting room assignments and storage space. As Vice President of Organizations, he says he will “work with [the] administration to help organizations find more space on campus for themselves to meet and their equipment to be held.” This would include working closely with the Deans of colleges to try to allow more rooms to be available for student clubs. Finally, to free up storage space, Hoffberg would like to use “the discretionary fund to build more cabinets in the Cohon Center or explore possibilities of utilizing Skibo Gym more.”

Hoffberg declares that he “will connect to the student body as [he has] successfully done in the past, by listening to the frustrations [of] people [he interacts] with by asking them what are the problems their clubs are facing.” To ensure this interaction, Hoffberg will hold open office hours for any student to approach him with a problem they are facing.