The Students’ Representative Council (SRC) is a council composed of a body of students elected by their peers, who are tasked with running the Acadia Students’ Union (ASU). The SRC meets every Wednesday at 5:30 PM in the Beveridge Forum located off the Michener Lounge in the Students’ Union Building (SUB). Each meeting is open to the public and students are welcome to attend meetings to learn more about the decisions being made on their behalf.
This week’s meeting consisted of discussion surrounding a notice of motion to re-implement the “No” vote during elections, a project reflection from the MCAT and LCAT practice tests that were held, and recruitment for council members to assist with the soon-approaching House Council interviews.
Notice of Motion: Yes/No Promotion
Councillor Jonah van Driesum asked for the council’s approval in re-implementing the “No” option for students during elections. Councillor van Driesum raised concern that this was the first year without the “No” vote and, uncoincidentally, this year’s election had the worst turnout of voters. Responding to the concern, VP Student Life Robbie Holmes explained that the decrease in the number of voters was also due to the lower number of candidates running for positions this year, and the lack of campaigning that took place during the election process. In van Driesum’s opinion, the turnout is a result of people wanting a Yes/No vote and not getting it; furthermore, putting the “No” box back in will raise the voter count and improve the democracy of the election system.
ASU President Kyle Vandertoorn commented that the decision to take away the “No” option was in an effort to prevent a re-election from happening in the case that an individual candidate is voted the majority “No”, and the council cannot fill the position. Moreover, the ‘No” option was taken out because if a student is so strongly against a candidate running for a position with the ASU, then they should run themselves. Historically, the “No” option is seldom chosen from students – the lowest recorded “Yes” result for a candidate was in the high eighties percentile.
Some council members also commented that if a student or a group of students are so opposed to someone running for council, that person or group of people should have an outlet to express their concern. This is because some students, although strongly opposed to whoever is running or on council, may be apprehensive about taking on the position themselves, for example, the role of President. Councillor Molly Anderson offered that the impeachment process should also be re-implemented then, to “give Acadia students back their power”. As of right now, only council members have the authority to impeach other council members, which can be problematic.
VP Finance and Operations Brendan MacNeil then voiced that he is disappointed in the council and the way this was executed. MacNeil stated, “it’s not a question of impeachment, it’s a question of the fundamentals of democracy. Do we represent the student body, or not?”
Arts, Professional Studies, Science Senator Project Reflection
Arts Senator Paige Stewardson, Professional Studies Senator Cassidy Churchill and Science Senator Nicole Kirkpatrick reflected on the opportunity they provided for Acadia students to write the MCAT and LCAT practice tests. The event took place on Sunday, and despite fewer students than expected being in attendance, the tests proved to be useful to students.
Stewardson commented that although the practice exams are not marked, they offer an opportunity for students to practice. Reviews from students who were able to participate concluded that the event was helpful to them. The handful of students who were unable to attend asked if there would be a chance to write the practice tests again next year. As a result of the event’s success, Stewardson, Churchill and Kirkpatrick wish to make MCAT and LCAT practice available to Acadia students in the following years.
Hiring Panel for House Council Executives
VP Student Life Robbie Holmes announced that he is recruiting council members to assist in the interviewing process of hiring Acadia students for positions of House Council for each residence on campus. The interviews will most likely be held between 4pm and 9pm on March 23rd, 24th, 26th, 30th and 31st and April 2nd of this year in each of the correlating residence buildings.
Hockey nationals are taking place in Halifax this weekend. Buses will be provided to transport any students who wish to attend. A bus and a half are already filled, and tickets are still available for purchase online. Additionally, food and drinks specials will be available at Dirty Nelly’s, who will be hosting Acadia students before each game. On top of this, there will be a Dirty Nelly’s gift card giveaway of between $30.00 and $50.00. The Axe Bar and Grill will also be showing the game Friday night for any students who are unable to attend.
Sustainability Officer Max Abu-Laban announced to council that he has written an article for the Athenaeum regarding an appeal to have a labour policy for all workers on campus. The goal is to get enough petitions signed and student rallies together in an effort to have the movement passed. The point of a labour policy for all people who work at Acadia University is to specify for both employees and employers what people are entitled to as workers. This is a perfect way of protecting everyone who works on Acadia campus and ensures that the responsibility of employees is put directly on the university.
Tuesday, March 17th is the Cheaton Cup hockey game. Students have been provided a section in a neutral zone and tickets are on sale in the Student Union Building (SUB) and Student identification is required. The same night, (Tuesday, March 17th ), Big Fish will be performing at the Axe Bar and Grill.
This upcoming Sunday, March 15th, there will be a community clean up beginning at 1pm at University Hall. Stop in at any time to help keep campus clean!