Candidates – By-Election 2020
Board of Governors Representative
My name is Sinit Abraha and I am a third year Political Science Student who is eager to be your next Board of Governors Undergraduate Representative. For the past two years, I have actively engaged the UCalgary community, primarily as the President for the Political Science Association. My diverse advocacy experience in positions at the Calgary Immigrant Woman Association and Leadership and Student Engagement Office have given me the tenacity to fight for the wellbeing students across campus. After listening to the concerns of countless students, I have developed a robust platform that can catalyze inclusive and positive changes in our campus community.
Establishing Connections Between Students and the Board: Historically, UCalgary students have been disconnected from the issues addressed by the Board of Governors. However, these decisions often directly influence the academic and professional success of our students. As your representative, I would actively raise awareness on the vital function of the board, by creating opportunities for students to engage with Governors. I believe this increased representation and participation, will bridge the gaps that have existed between board members and students. As a result, the Board’s decisions can align with needs and challenges facing students.
Addressing Tuition Increases: The recent and upcoming tuition increases have severely impacted the accessibility and affordability of post-secondary education. I want to fully-inform the board on the student and university-wide implications of raising tuition prices. Moreover, I plan on utilizing survey platforms to collect information on how the last tuition increase has impacted student. I hope to use this information to better inform discussions on future tuition increases for domestic and international students.
Enhancing Student Consultation and Participation: During my term, I plan on establishing for a student-led committee comprised of department clubs, BIPOC individuals, faculty representatives, and other interested personnel. Nevertheless, I intend on strongly advocating and ensuring that the board makes informed decisions with complete knowledge of student concerns.
If you any questions or concerns regarding my platform, feel free to reach out to me: email@example.com or on my campaign Instagram and Facebook @sinit4bog
– Push for a reform of board proceedings. Board procedures put student representatives on the defensive, making it hard for student voices to drive meaningful policy changes. I would push for a change to the procedure to make it easier for the student representatives to actually be heard and have an impact.
– Renegotiate tuition prices for online-only classes. University is not just for learning facts and figures, it’s also about making useful connections for your professional and personal life. Covid-19 has made it harder for the university to provide these services, and we should not continue to pay full price for it. If the university refuses to promise to reduce tuition, the least we can ask for is a more student-focused allocation of resources.
– Secure a promise from the university to tackle deferred maintenance costs. Our facilities need fixing, millions of dollars worth of it. However much I’d love to just remove the asbestos from Craigie Hall myself, the best we can do is make the university promise to actually tackle the issue.
– I will also bring other students to observe board meetings. Literally just by having a student presence in the room (or the zoom meeting) the tone of the meeting shifts significantly, and the students are no longer just one among many factors to consider. I will bring with me as many people as are able to attend.
As BoG representative, my main promise will be this: your voice will always be my priority. The students are not just a small part of the campus community, we are its heart. Without students, there is no university, and it’s time for the board of governors to consider our perspective.
1. Oppose all tuition increases for students.
1.1: I will oppose any tuition increases for both domestic and international students as a result of provincial government budget cuts towards post-secondary education.
1.2 I will directly voice student’s concerns with the provincial government funding cuts with the SU representatives, Board members and Minister of Advanced Education.
2. Strive for more funding towards Student Supports.
2.1 There is a high level of uncertainty for university funding in the upcoming years. I will strive to maintain essential student services such as the Wellness Centre and Financial Assistance for those who needs support during their university experience.
3. Increasing Board of Governors Undergraduate Representation.
3.1 With the Alberta government reviewing the Post-Secondary Learning Act in the upcoming year, I will argue for more student undergraduate representation on the board to ensure that student voices are adequately represented.
3.2 This will be achieved by discussing with SU and Board members, as well as reaching out to ministers in the provincial government involved in the McKinsey review.
If you have any questions about my campaign or my views, you may contact me below: