Briefs: Week of Sept. 10, 2018

Proposed changes to by-laws for Indigenous representative position

Over the summer, Brianna Workman, St. Thomas University Students’ Union president, and Husoni Raymond, vice-president administration, collaborated with members of the Indigenous student community to adjust how the Indigenous representative will be selected during the Spring General Election.

Mandy Richard, a STU alumna, Kyanna Kingbird, a STU student and Trenton Augustine, the aboriginal students services coordinator, helped them find a solution that respects Indigenous culture.

An amendment to the election by-laws in STUSU’s constitution was proposed. Instead of a representative being elected, they shall be appointed by the Indigenous student community. 

“This position will see the Indigenous rep being appointed if this change is to go through, but it really gives the autonomy to the Indigenous student community to choose how that individual is selected,” Workman said.

If the representative needs to be removed, the Indigenous student community will hold a talking circle, or any other form of mediation, within seven days of that notice. During this mediation, they will select a new representative.

This amendment was tabled until the next SRC meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 19.

Student Advisory Committee

A student advisory committee will come to campus within the next two weeks. Students on the committee will be trained by university officials on policies and procedures. They will be able to help other students navigate or understand these policies.  

“We got a lot of applications and it was very competitive. I initially intended to only have five positions, but because of how many applications we got, I decided to go with 10,” said Husoni Raymond, vice-president administration for STUSU.

#studentsletsact

A national mental health campaign has been introduced called #studentsletsact. The Canadian Alliance of Student Associations will roll out this campaign under their national advocacy committee at the end of January.

Emma Walsh, vice-president education for STUSU, is also the chair of the national advocacy committee.

“You will hear a lot more about this from me … I would like to hear your input and I just think it’s something that I’m working very hard on,” said Walsh.  

Paper and petition calling for better services for international students

The Canadian Alliance of Student Associations published a paper called “Value Beyond the Dollars and Cents: International Students’ Contributions to Canada and Their Need for Supports.” There is also a petition circulating, calling for improved services for international students across the country.

“Keep It Social”

A new committee called “Keep It Social” will be on campus. The goal of this committee is to educate and address any issues regarding alcohol harm at STU. The committee will host events and campaigns to help reduce alcohol harm and encourage students to be safe when they drink, on and off campus.

Visiting gerontology chair

St. Thomas University will welcome Rodrigo Serrat from the University of Barcelona in Spain, as the visiting chair in gerontology in January.

Enrolment

As of Sept. 1, STU has 2,007 full-time students, up from 1,958 last year. There are 638 first-year students and 32 new international students this year.

Capital campaign

STU’s capital campaign has reached $9.9-million, nearing it’s goal of $10-million. The pledge period began on Jan. 1, 2016 and will end on Dec. 31, 2020.

“Since we’re already at $9.9-million, the leadership team believes we can do much better than that, so we’re just now saying a minimum of $10-million. We’re just going to really keep fundraising,” President Dawn Russell said.

New awards

Five new awards have been approved, including the Brian Carty Memorial Award, Best Honours Thesis in International Relations, Special Project Fund for Political Science, W. Vaughn Prize for Best Essay In International Relations and Juergen Doerr Prize in Comparative Politics.

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