Current Student Federation of the University of Ottawa (SFUO) president Anne-Marie Roy is running for re-election.
“I wouldn’t be doing it again if I didn’t love it this much. I’m really looking forward to continuing the work we started this year,” she said.
Roy is running with the Student Action slate, along with four other members of the current executive. She said there are five main themes for their slate: student voices, student rights, fees, food services, and student space. Roy listed getting rid of the 25-cent fee at the cafeteria debit machine as one of the slate’s victories this year.
She said that if elected for the next academic year, she hopes to continue working to eliminate hidden fees for students, and to explore the possibility of expanding the Jock Turcot University Centre, which finished construction in 1973 and has not been altered since. She said increasing student space is a priority for next year.
Roy has only two classes left until her graduation, but plans to take courses next year if elected.
Igor Antonio is leading the new Super Party slate with his campaign for president of the SFUO.
He said his priorities if elected are awareness, accountability, and engagement. He hopes to bring “a fresh start” to the SFUO, and his main goal is reform.
“I don’t think the current system that’s been established is a prime environment for change at this school, and obviously, going on campus and talking to students, the main issue is that they don’t feel like they’re a part of something,” he said.
Antonio listed his work as a student representative on the University of Ottawa Senate as an invaluable experience that helped shape him for the SFUO president position. He said he wants to have a consistent presence in classrooms, talking with students throughout the year to “put a face to the office.”
Vp services and communications
Yanéric Bisaillon, the current philanthropic and logistic director of the Political, International, and Development Studies Student Association (PIDSSA),
is running with the 1Campus slate for the position of vp services and communications. He said he would like to bring his valuable experience working with a Member of Parliament and in internal and external communications to the SFUO.
He said that if elected, his priority next year is “more services, less fees,” and added that he wants to bring together different SFUO resources to evaluate their efficiency and whether they can be consolidated. He also said he plans to prioritize accessibility so students are able to use the federation’s services in their language of choice.
“They come here from all across Canada to study in a bilingual university, so make sure we offer them the campus that they actually came for,” he said.
She plans to bring her experience as vp equity to the vp services and communications position, and her goal for the next academic year is to “open a two-way dialogue with students (to) discover the services that are lacking or that could be improved, while maintaining equity work at all levels of the student federation.”
Desnoyers is running with the Student Action slate, the same slate she successfully ran with in the previous election.
Desnoyers highlighted the powwow as one of her biggest accomplishments this year, but said in the next academic year she would like to improve on her organization of day-to-day tasks.
She also said she understands the SFUO as an organization having already been a part of the executive, and hopes to bring that experience to her portfolio in the position of vp services and communications.
Marissa Harfouche is running with the Super Party slate, alongside three of her cousins, Roy, Joyce, and Josée Younes.
She said she would like to host press conferences to inform students on any changes being made to the SFUO. She said she believes there should be a feeling of collectivity among students, and that her job is to be compassionate and represent student issues.
“I don’t believe in selling myself,” she said. “I am a student just like anyone else.”
She said she is “really passionate” about the position.
Harfouche said she is running with Super Party because they are a “good team” with “qualities that compliment each other.” She added that they have the same values, including openness and honesty, and that she will “try really hard to do what students want.”
Maya McDonald said she hopes to educate, inform, and engage in the position of vp equity. McDonald is running independently.
She said she does not want to avoid topics that “might be considered taboo,” and that campus should be a safe space to discuss said topics. She said the vp equity position resonated with her as being similar to the former vp student affairs position. She said she hopes to regain the emphasis on student and club interaction with the executive.
“Coming from a political science background, I understand what it’s like to not understand something and students need to learn that’s OK,” she said. “Instead of feeling like they’re going to be attacked for not knowing, bringing out the understanding will help people collectively move forward together.”
McDonald said the novelty of the vp equity position needs to be acknowledged, but that if elected, she would place more emphasis on a bigger project rather than making smaller changes.
“One thing that I really liked was the bilingualism audit and if that was the major focus of the year, next year could be majorly focused on something like promoting the services offered by the Women’s Resource Centre,” she said.
Hadyn Place, director of Francophone recruitment for the Conservative Students at the University of Ottawa, is running independently for the position of vp equity in the SFUO elections.
Place said he wants to “reduce the cost of student government and effectively deliver services that everyone can access.” He said he wants to take a more “broad spectrum approach” to equity in order to appeal to more students.
He added that his experience on his high school student council has helped him develop his ability to deal well with people, and that he will be an effective representative for the “everyman that the U of O is not representing in the student government.”
Place said he wants to reduce cost by “ending all these silly campaigns” and focusing on larger issues like reducing tuition costs.
Josée Younes is running alongside three of her cousins with the Super Party slate for the vp equity position.
She said the three pillars of her platform are “awareness, fairness, and engagement,” and that the main goal for her slate is to “make a change,” and “let everyone know what’s going on on campus.” She added that she is a “very good listener,” and wants to hear the needs of students.
Younes said what she would like to accomplish next year is to host an equity conference between local universities and colleges to discuss ideas. She said the only thing she would do differently from current vp equity Nicole Desnoyers is to “promote more and let everyone know what’s going on in the school.”
Younes also said her slate works well together because most of them are family. She said they have different qualities, but work well together because they are not too shy to tell each other how they feel.
Dave Eaton, the SFUO’s current vp finance, is running for re-election, with the Student Action slate.
Eaton said he plans to “build on the work that I have already (done) and what I know about the student
federation at the university to provide results for students in general.”
He said that if elected, his focus would be making sure students are represented well at all levels of governance. Eaton said he wants to start town hall meetings about the budget, which he hopes will get students more involved in the budget and increase transparency.
He said his work as vp finance this year will give him an advantage in the new year in terms of “knowing what to prioritize, how to manage staff, how to deal with all the questions of the health plan, and how to deal with everyday occurrences of the businesses.”
He highlighted the removal of the 25-cent charge at the cafeteria and SFUO businesses as one of his triumphs this year, but said there are always things to improve on, namely finding a balance between his job as vp finance specifically and being a member of the executive more generally.
Arno Van Dijk is running for the position of vp finance with the 1Campus slate.
Van Dijk said the three words he would use to describe his platform are students, different, and dynamic. He said his campaign and platform centre around the idea of “a change that will focus more on our campus rather than issues that are affecting students across the province.”
Van Dijk currently holds the position of vp finance for the Students’ Association of the Faculty of Arts (SAFA), and said his goal in the next academic year, if elected, is to foster engagement with the administration and come to a compromise about tuition reduction programs. He said he wants to keep as much student money on campus as possible.
“I think there are areas of finance that people tend to forget about,” he said. “The vp finance is in charge of the four businesses run by the SFUO and I think I am organized enough to make them run successfully and hopefully thrive in the future.”
Roy Younes is re-running for the position of vp finance after losing the vote to Dave Eaton last year.
He said he wants to promote engagement and hope in students so they can be more proactive and believe in the work the SFUO is doing.
Younes is running with the Super Party slate alongside three of his cousins: Josée Younes for vp equity, Joyce Younes for vp social, and Marissa Harfouche for vp services and communications.
Younes said that if elected, one of his main goals next year is to eliminate the profit margin at Café Alt. He said the SFUO “shouldn’t care about profit,” but rather that the focus should be on providing food below market price. He added that the “quality of their food is horrible,” and that he wants to increase the engagement of the café’s staff.
Younes said his experience as an economics and business student, and his work as a junior accountant and sales representative for his father have prepared him for the position of vp finance. He said SFUO money should be invested in order to garner a financial return after several months.
Ikram Hamoud, who was voted into the vp services and communications position in the November 2013 by-election, is running for the position of vp social for the next academic year. She is running with the Student Action slate.
Hamoud said her platform focuses on “diversity, change, and culture.”
“The whole point of my platform is to give a new face to the SFUO, to make it more inclusive to our members,” she said.
She said she wants the whole undergraduate student body to feel included in, and represented by, the SFUO. She listed her experience working at the International House and on the International Gala as something that has prepared her for the job of vp social.
“I want to make events that everyone can come to,” she said.
Jesse Wetzl, who currently holds the position of vp social for SAFA, is running for the same position on the SFUO executive. He is running with the 1Campus slate.
He said he works well with the members of the slate and that they are all on the same page in terms of their ideas for the next academic year.
Wetzl said his experience with SAFA, which has one of the largest budgets of all the faculties and with which he has helped host events for thousands of people, has provided him with the experience to be vp social at the executive level.
He also said he has worked closely with current vp social Pat Marquis, so he hopes to build on what has been accomplished this year. Wetzl said he wants to utilize more of the resources available to him.
He said the three words he would use to describe his platform are accessible, entertaining, and fun.
Joyce Younes is running with the Super Party slate, alongside three of her cousins, for the vp social position.
Younes said the focus of her slate is on “engagement, energy, and school spirit,” and that her main goal is increased event promotion. She said the two years she worked on her high school student council, where she planned events for the school, and her current work with children, where she must create new activities every day, have prepared her for the position.
Younes said she is running for the position of vp social because she is a social person and wants to create events that will “make people smile.”
“I want students to feel not like they’re going to school, but more like they’re going to have an experience,” she said.
Younes added that she is running with the Super Party slate because she wants to “grab students’ attention in a playful and fun way.”
Vp university affairs
Kaitlynne-Rae Landry, who is currently the president of the Residents’ Association of the University of Ottawa (RAUO), is running for the position of vp university affairs.
She said despite any classes she may take next year, her focus will be the SFUO, and that the core of her platform is to “give students choice.” Landry is running with the 1Campus slate.
She said her priority is “reevaluating decisions that have been made in order to enable students to have more choice and options in what their student life is going to be.”
Landry said she wants to provide students with an opt-out option on their U-Pass.
She said her experience with the RAUO has shaped her to become the vp university affairs because her position as president is similar to the position she is running for, but at the residence level.
“I’m already familiar with the university’s administration that deals with these issues and I’ve also already been working with getting things done with the university admin, so I know how that works,” she said.
Chris Hynes, the current vp university affairs for the SFUO, is running for re-election with the Student Action slate.
Hynes said the three words he would use to describe his platform are rights, space, and action.
“This year, I really loved the things that I worked on,” he said. “I’m excited to continue working on the U-Pass, looking at having a summer as well an STO option for the U-Pass, and I’m also here to help you get what you need, which means getting your final grades back sooner as well as getting that drop date pushed further back.”
Hynes said he wants to expand SFUO outreach to students and that “advocacy work is key to student unions.” He also said the relationships he built this year with the administration, Food Services, the RAUO, and the Board of Governors will serve him well next year if re-elected.