On Dec. 8, 2021, Laurier students will head to the polls to vote for three new members on the Students’ Union’s Board of Directors.
The initial date for students to vote was Oct. 5., to be open until Oct. 7. Since quorum was not met at the time, the voting date has been extended to Dec. 8. until 8:00 p.m. Once the minimum number of votes has been met, the election will cease.
“An election allows for new voices and perspectives to contribute to the SU initiatives,” said Ashley Ramdhan, deputy returning officer for the Brantford campus.
By voting between the five potential candidates, students are able to express what issues matter to them and decide how they want the Students’ Union to function.
The Board of Directors’ primary duty is to oversee the Students’ Union President and CEO, Pegah Jamalof, and ensure the Students’ Union works to promote student advocacy.
Candidates are campaigning on a variety of promises, including mental health initiatives, clarity between the Students’ Union and the student body, enhanced programming.
Sam Bryant, candidate and fourth year Political Science major at the Waterloo campus, chose to run in the election to better understand the inner workings of the Students’ Union, as well as help other students understand too. Bryant believes that as an upper year student, his knowledge of the campus and greater community make him suitable for the position.
“If I am elected to represent the students at both Brantford and Waterloo, I will do my best to survey and connect with Brantford students to address issues that need to be discussed,” said Bryant.
One of Bryant’s main goals is the promotion of mental health resources for students.
“I feel that while there is attention drawn to mental health, there are still disconnects between the students and the knowledge of how to access them and that’s something that needs to be addressed,” he said.
Additionally, Bryant feels that maintaining an awareness of sexual violence is critical to having a safe campus for all students.
Candidate Tyler Rolczewski, recent graduate from the Business Administration program and current Psychology student at the Waterloo campus wants students to have a similar experience to what he had at Laurier.
Rolczewski listed increased opportunities for students in all programs and placed emphasis on student wants and needs as some of his biggest goals.
“I think it’s easy to lose sight of the people [the Board of Directors is] impacting,” said Rolczewski. “I would help keep that always in mind and be the number one focus.”
Rolczewski believes his empathy for the needs of Laurier students make him well suited towards being on the Board of Directors.
Nicholas Lafarciola, third year Business Administration student is also running for a position on the Board. Lafarciola claims his experience and involvement on the Waterloo campus makes him a qualified candidate.
Lafarciola’s decision to run was motivated by a want to get more involved in helping Laurier students and allowing students to have power within the Student’s Union.
Lafarciola defines his campaign by two promises: transparency and alignment. Lafarciola values transparency to allow Laurier students insight over what the Board of Directors is doing for Laurier students. Alignment is part of his promise to ensure the Board of Directors is working in accordance with the wishes of students.
Blake Phillips, second year Business Administration and Computer Science student, is also a candidate for the Board of Directors.
He shares on the Students’ Unions website that if he gets elected, his goals are to address sexual violence and safety on campus, the promotion of mental health resources for students, and improving transparency between the Students’ Union and the greater Laurier community.
Second year Angeline Redford at the Waterloo campus would also like a spot on the Board.
She wants to prioritize boosting student involvement for those both in-person and online, as per her platform on the Students’ Union website. She hopes that by doing this, she can make students’ experiences at Laurier more memorable, in spite of a global pandemic.
The by-election provides an important opportunity for students to vote to make their voices heard.
Since the Students’ Union and by extension the Board of Directors have a strong impact on the university experience of all Laurier students, it is important for students to speak their minds.
“Make sure you get out and make sure you get your voice heard, because it really does matter,” said Lafarciola.
To find out more about the candidates and learn how to vote, students can visit https://yourstudentsunion.ca/representation/ or follow @wlusubod on Instagram.