Student union returns to business after winter break, soon to host its AGM
The student union had a slow start to semester with a three-day power outage, but TRUSU is back in session. The first board of directors meeting took place Jan. 13.
Another board vacancy
TRUSU has lost a board member for the third time this academic year. Aboriginal representative Liz Whiting resigned last Tuesday after two years on the board.
“She really was passionate about bringing forward the perspective of aboriginal students to the board and making sure that perspective was well reflected and respected … she’s going to be missed for sure,” TRUSU president Dylan Robinson said.
Whiting has been on a leave of absence since September. According to TRUSU bylaws, a board member can ask for a leave of absence up to one semester.
Robinson said TRUSU has not yet decided whether or not to fill the empty seat.
“As per the [TRUSU] appointments policy, once 120 days are reached before the annual scheduled election, there’s actually no obligation or requirement to appoint a successor, seeing as it’s only a couple of months before the election,” he said.
Robinson added that the aboriginal representative is not required to have experience with advocacy before sitting on the board.
An empty seat also means TRUSU will be short one board member going into its annual general meeting next week. TRUSU’sAGMissetforJan.28 at 7 p.m. in the Independent Centre in the CAC. The meeting is open to all members.
“[The AGM] provides members with the opportunity to see what we’ve been up to and how we’ve been spending their money and shepherding their investment that they’ve made in our organization,” Robinson said.
“It’s a really important opportunity for students to participate and make sure that the direction that they’d like to see the student’s union go is adequately reflected in all of our reporting that we do.”
TRUSU will be presenting a financial report for the year, as well as reports from other standing TRUSU committees (equity, entertainment, services, executive, campaigns and policy committees).
According to Robinson, this was the first year for a new equity committee structure, which included seats for all advocacy representatives on the board and was meant to create more work for those representatives.
Robinson also said that provincial politics was one of TRUSU’s greatest challenges this year.
“This is really a government that has a very strict austerity agenda and they feel that there’s not a lot of room in provincial governments to invest in post-secondary education,” he said.
TRUSU created their “Fund the Future” campaign based on this position and met in September with the standing committee of finance and government services to recommend policy change.