With the University of Saskatchewan Students’ Union general elections in full swing, candidates for next year’s executive are out campaigning.
This year the president, vice-president academic affairs and vice-president student affairs all have two candidates in the running while the vice-president operations and finance has an uncontested candidate. Noah Kelleher and Jack Saddleback are the two USSU presidential candidates. The position of vice-president academic affairs has Gabe Senecal and Felipe del Campo in the running. Kehan Fu and Wendy Li are the two candidates in contention for vice-president student affairs. The sole candidate for vice-president operations and finance is Ata Merat.
Each year the Sheaf writes a quiz for executive candidates to measure their general knowledge of the USSU, the U of S, Huskie sports and the Sheaf itself. Each candidate’s quiz score is included along with an outline of their platform.
“Eliminate the chance of having two finals on one day and implement a ‘student first’ mentality within the USSU and Board of Governors. Too often are students put on the back burner and only thought of as a revenue generator. [I would] vote no to any budget presented to me that suggests an increase in tuition or student fees and promote greater collaboration between the student body and governance when making crucial decisions.”
“As USSU executives, we only have 365 days to create change. Within this timeline I will work to implement my platform points, all of which are feasible.
“First, I will work with our student body and the university to build and implement a mental health strategy. Second, sexual assault is a huge issue across Canada’s post-secondary institutions; we need a sexual assault policy here at the U of S so no one is left in a ‘grey area’ wondering where to go next. Third, I see that the USSU can do better in engaging students on all levels at our university. Lastly, students are passionate about community engagement and I would love for this to not only be fostered but grow.
“I look forward to this election and to hear from you, because this is your USSU.”
VP Operations & Finance
“I would like to continue the financial success of the USSU. I will look for new ways to support innovation and entrepreneurship among student groups such as supporting installation of a Bitcoin ATM on campus and petitioning the USSU to begin accepting Bitcoin donations. I would like to develop an app to connect students to protective services and Safewalk faster and easier.”
VP Academic Affairs
“I want to increase academic awareness and accessibility to USSU services by creating an academic advocacy centre and establishing fixed office hours for the exec. I want to keep promoting tuition consultation in each college. Then, I want to lobby to implement official electronic transcripts. Finally, I want to promote and increase undergraduate research.”
“Creating a student bill of rights in conjunction with the university. The university does a poor job of actually letting students know their academic rights; a student bill of rights would solve this problem through repackaging and reorganizing the university’s jumbled policies into a cohesive and clear manner.
“[I will] implement a maximum of three midterms in 48 hours. Midterms are a particularly hard time for students, especially considering that midterms, unlike finals, require students to also keep up regular commitments to labs, classes, assignments essays.
“[I would implement] three-year tuition forecasting. Students deserve to know what they will be paying down the road in their degree.
“The U of S suffers from a lack of community at times. I will work with the other USSU executives to implement policies and build community. Social activities like a winter welcome week are a great first step.”
VP Student Affairs
“I want to revamp Welcome Week to be better in three ways: more immersive experience lasting an entire week from dawn until dusk, more inclusive to allow for international, indigenous, residence and underage students and more integrated to allow for different student groups and bodies to share their cultures and ideas with a larger crowd.
“[I want to] revamp the USSU radio show to engage more students with constant guests, music acts and even on-campus segments, and develop the show as an exposé of student culture in Saskatoon, to be viewed also as a weekly podcast segment including both on-air and off-air material. All students should have a means to express and act upon their concerns and ideas.
“One vice-president isn’t enough to deal with the many issues that are currently being sidelined. I will push for the creation of a student affairs committee including mental health, residence, sexual health, safety, physical health, academic research and community engagement.”
“If elected, I would like to work on three student issues: raising awareness of mental health, getting universal (gender neutral) washrooms in Lower Place Riel and safety for all students on campus.”
The Sheaf’s 2015 USSU Elections Quiz
- Name the University of Saskatchewan’s provost and vice-president academic. (1)
- What year was the Sheaf founded? (1)
- Name three former USSU presidents. (1/2 each)
Jared Brown, Scott Hitchings, Chris Stoicheff
- Which body sets tuition fees at the U of S? (1)
The Board of Governors
- Name the five USSU centres. (1/2 each)
Pride Centre, Food Centre, Women’s Centre, Help Centre, Childcare Centre
- Name the three governing bodies of the U of S. (3)
Senate, University Council, Board of Governors
- Where will the new childcare centre be built? (1)
Souris, McEown Park, College Quarter
- Which winter amenity was missing from the Bowl this year? (1)
- Who was the Huskies’ starting quarterback at the start of this past year? (1)
- How many days did the 2014 transit lockout last? (1)
- Which day does the Sheaf hit stands? (1)
- What makes this year’s USSU budget a historic budget? (1)
It is balanced.
- Approximately how many undergraduate students attend the U of S? (1)
16,500 – 17,000
- Which Huskie sport hosted nationals this year? (1)
- What year was the University of Saskatchewan founded? (1)
- Which college was the focus of the Sheaf’s first photo feature? (1)
Western College of Veterinary Medicine
- Whose controversial firing was the catalyst for major changes within the U of S administration in 2014? (1)
- Name one of Gordon Barnhart’s former careers. (1)
Legislative clerk, House of Commons clerk, Lieutenant Governor, University Secretary, political science professor
- Who is the USSU General Manager? (1)
- What year was the USSU, then known as the SRC, established? (1)
- How did the women’s basketball team place at nationals this year? (1)