Senate Briefs Sept. 12

Enrolment

As of Sept. 3, St. Thomas University has 2016 students enrolled in its courses. This is an increase of about 10 students from last year and there has been a slight increase in the student population for the past four years. Numbers might be affected when students who have signed up for courses don’t pay their fees and therefore are found to be no longer attending the university. There will be another update on enrolment in December. This number was slightly above STU’s goal and projections.

President’s meetings

President and vice-chancellor of St. Thomas University Dawn Russell met with the minister of post-secondary education training and labour Trevor Holder and other government officials over the past few weeks. She said the talks were primarily about the operating grant inequity among other things such as STU’s diverse programs and role in Indigenous education. She said Minister Holder talked “cryptically” about the future of post-secondary education in New Brunswick.

She also met with other members of the government such as minister of education and early childhood development Dominic Cardy, leader of the Green Party of New Brunswick David Coon and leader of the Liberal Party of New Brunswick Kevin Vickers about post-secondary education. She also introduced herself to the University of New Brunswick’s newly hired president and vice-chancellor Paul Mazerolle.

Capital campaign

St. Thomas University has received $12.1 million in donations towards funds such as the faculty development fund, which will be put toward student research assistants and faculty research. The Windsor Foundation, a charity foundation which supports post-secondary funding initiatives through grants, matched the $300,000 of funds contributed by the student body toward a mental health fee as the result of a referendum in spring 2018. The first $100,000 has been delivered to the capital campaign and the rest has been promised.

Discussions about funding have also taken place with Medavie Blue Cross, concerning mental health initiatives. STU has also asked the Harrison McCain Foundation to provide a third round of $300,000 of funding for indigenous student services.

New economics awards

The Joan McFarland prize for political economy for second year and Joan McFarland prize for political economy for third year have been announced.

There will also be a scholarship under the same title.

Get Out The Vote campaign

The Canadian Alliance of Student Association’s nationwide Get Out the Vote campaign has launched. It will encourage students to vote in the federal election through social media and easily accessible voting. About 20 students are volunteering with the campaign. There will be special polling on campus from Oct. 5 to 9 in James Dunn Hall. They are also collecting pledges for students to vote. This will help further STUSU’s advocacy to the government by recording the student impact on this riding’s voting pool.

There will be a candidates debate on Sept. 24 in the Kinsella Auditorium at 6:30 p.m.