2013

Elysia Saundry (esaundry@sfu.ca)

Hello fellow Arts students,

I am running to be your Faculty Representative for the Arts and Social Sciences. Currently, I’m the Candidate-photopresident of the Linguistics Student Union, VP Internal of SASS, and the Forum Representative for Psychology. My experience with these unions and SFSS committees means that I have achieved a better understanding of how the SFSS works and would be able to begin working on my goals sooner.During the past year I have worked closely with the current Arts Rep in order to identify these issues within our faculty and the best way to resolve them. With your vote, I would like to represent you on the SFSS and introduce a few key changes that would improve your experience.

Faculty Student Unions

The Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) has the largest number of Departmental Student Unions of all the faculties. SASS, the Society of Arts and Social Sciences, was formed within the last few years but has already experienced much success. While individually many DSUs are quite active, they simply do not have the capacity to organize large-scale events such as Frosh, Arts Week, and Formals. These events are crucial to contributing to a sense of pride and belonging in our faculty. I will work to ensure that Faculty Student Unions are officially added into the structure of the SFSS in a way that is beneficial for the SFSS, FSUs, and each respective faculty’s constituent DSUs.

Student Affairs Officer

There needs to be a direct link that connects students, faculty, administration, alumni, and the community. A dedicated Student Affairs Officer for FASS would be responsible for developing programming, advising student organizations and leaders, and conducting research to meet the needs of the whole student. Beedie has a Student Engagement Office with similar goals. It is bizarre that our faculty, which makes up around half of the student body, lacks any such position, especially when we are comprised of such a diverse range of students in different disciplines.

Work was done a year ago for this in Arts but was put on hold while the faculty rearranged some funding and positions. I have talked to the key players behind this initiative and plan to restart and rejuvenate the campaign. I will lobby both the university and the faculty to create a position to support student initiatives and strengthen the sense of community within Arts and Social Sciences.

Other Issues for Arts Students

Instead of increasing support for Arts students, there have been cutbacks. Arts Central’s mandate has been revised and we have lost at least one notable advisor who contributed heavily to the SFU community. The reason given for this was that a number of international initiatives were no longer being pursued. My question is: why is SFU, a university that prides itself “engaging the world,” letting this happen? As someone who chose SFU because of the global opportunities it offered, I would like to investigate what is contributing to the loss of these programs and how we can revitalize them.

Many of our departments also face severe shortages of important classes, despite the fact that their programs are growing rapidly. The lack of classes is causing unnecessary delays in graduation and much frustration for students. As Arts Rep I will communicate with the departments who have managed to alleviate this problem and take that knowledge back to those departments that need it most.

Thank you for taking the time to read my platform. With your vote, you are choosing a candidate who is capable, dedicated, and has clear goals to achieve.


Tekena Jacob

Hey SFU arts and social science students!
My Name is Tekena Jacob, and I am a third year Political science & Communications major and colins_dpEconomics minor. After three wonderful years of learning here, I think it is right time to give back. Being an international student, I got into SFU through the Fraser International College located on the other side of campus. From my early days there, I have being an active participant in the SFU community as a volunteer for different initiatives.
At FIC I served as an orientation leader, member of student panel, peer advisor and peer educator. Simultaneously, i have volunteered for a number of positions during several events at SFU. During my time in residence too, I was fortunate to be a community advisor designate and took part in a two week training program that was meant to fine tune and polish the already established leadership skills in the individuals that keep the SFU residences a wonderful place to be.
Now, ladies and gentlemen, friends and colleagues, I am running for the office of Faculty of Arts and Social Science representative on the board of directors of the Simon Fraser Student Society. After doing a number of things on the periphery, I am asking to be given a chance to do what would enrich our lives more, would make our learning experience at SFU better, and most importantly, affect more people in the university community.
The current board (and our faculty rep in particular), have thus far done an excellent job and I do not see the need for too many drastic changes. I believe in continuity, if it is for the right purposes. If elected and given the chance to represent you, I would however concentrate on the following important issues:
i.)I would create an enabling environment for departments within the faculty to interact more with each other. I was genuinely surprised when somebody I spoke to in the process of collecting signatures for my nomination form, did not know that cognitive science and political science are in the same faculty. I would also work more closely with the Society of Arts and Social Sciences and help organize events to facilitate this process. Also in tandem with the SASS, I would like to build a networking community between arts and social science undergraduate students and alumni in the working world.
ii.)I will actively participate in the student legislative council meetings, be a part of committees, and attend and promote events that are important to arts students. I will be diligent in completing the many responsibilities expected of a faculty representative and I will seek out other opportunities beyond those normally expected from representatives. The arts faculty always has interesting events happening such as performances and presentations; I will work to promote these events.

iii.)Create meaningful two-way communication. I think that representing my faculty by talking to students, understanding their concerns, and figuring out ways to make these things happen should be my number one priority if I were to become your Arts Rep. I would also need to ensure our faculty knows what the Students’ Union is doing and how it could affect us as Arts students.
iv.) Boost Arts Faculty pride on campus. I am, always have been, and always will be proud to be an Arts student. As members of the largest and most diverse faculty on campus, I feel that we should celebrate our many assets and use them to show the rest of the SFU community exactly what a proud group of multitalented individuals we are.
v.) As Arts Rep, I would be obliged to speak out for the interests of my faculty; but my conviction is that students are better representing themselves, than waiting for their Rep. to get around to them. I’d push for whiteboards in the halls, where the Student’s voice could freely flourish. We could do this without SFSS Money. That would ensure real representation to all faculties for years to come.
vi.) I would also come up with regular youtube videos to keep everyone informed about developments in the faculty and between the faculty and SFSS.

Give me the mandate through your votes, and I would make sure to stand up to my word.

Thank you.