Every two weeks, Students’ Council meets in University Hall (right across from the Students’ Union and to the east side of Van Vliet and the Butterdome) to discuss and sometimes vote on issues relevant to University of Alberta students. The student representatives meet throughout the summer, fall and winter, and often have to read long – and sometimes, cumbersome – “Order Papers.” Some of these packages are dozens of pages in lengths, and even the most dedicated students can fail to read through them. Because of this, The Wanderer Online will be providing a quick one-page summary of relevant happenings in the SU – condensing the executive reports – before each meeting of Council. So without further ado, here is our inaugural Council CliffsNotes:
– The Students’ Union’s Petros Kusmu (Vice-President External) and Colten Yamagishi (President) met with Mr. Steve Young, the Alberta Legislature representative for Edmonton-Riverview, and made traction on possible advocacy meetings with the Edmonton, Calgary and Rural Caucuses. What does this mean? Well, at the moment, many advocacy meetings are conducted in one-on-one or small-group style. These caucus meetings would allow the SU to present their arguments to large groups of government representatives.
– University Athletics Board (UAB) Academic Orientation will work with the Center for Student Development this year, in order to enhance their offerings to first-year varsity student-athletes. In 2011, then-UAB President and Pandas volleyball player Caity Buckell introduced an incoming orientation, and this year’s President, Golden Bears basketball player Todd Bergen-Henengouwen, is following this up in fine style.
– Vice-President (Academic) Dustin Chelen has plenty on the go, creating a Faculty Association Task Force, advocating to the university on improving academic advising, launching an Academic Relations Group (a team of eight students that will meet and work with Dustin throughout the year), to mention only several activities. His blog post is a gem, as well.
– Colten and the Vice-President (Student Life) Saadiq Sumar have been in several U-Pass meetings, where they will be discussing a potential new contract, not to mention a Spring/Summer U-Pass contract.
– In 2011-2012, then-President Rory Tighe met with each dean on campus regarding the Fall Reading Week Proposal; however, the proposal did not go to a formal vote in General Faculties Council (the U of A’s major academic legislative body). Colten looks to continue the two-year effort to implement a week-long break in the fall semester, with October 27 as the potential voting day at General Faculties Council.
Overall, this only provides a snippet of the Students’ Union’s efforts. Based off a skim through executives’ reports, it is clear that thorough work is being done to make the university, province and country a better place for Canadians.
Enjoy Students’ Council on July 10, and for more info or questions, contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Until then, take pride in now better-understanding the SU without slugging your way through thick order papers.