Since mid-September, TRUSU has been looking to fill two of the positions on its board of directors. The union lost both an entertainment committee representative and the women’s representative earlier this semester.
The entertainment committee rep position closed Sept. 27 and the women’s rep position closes Oct. 4.
Entertainment Committee Representative Usra Gohar, who was elected in the Spring, decided to not return to TRU or her position within the Students’ Union this semester and formally resigned on Sept. 5.
Women’s representative Emiko Ohama left Sept. 19.
Ohama’s decision to abandon her post came from her feeling that she couldn’t implement the ideas she campaigned on. Because of the approval process required by the equity committee in implementing new initiatives, Ohama found out she wouldn’t be able to deliver on the ideas that got her elected.
“Since I cannot deliver on the ideas that got me voted in – I stepped down from my position because it is the most ethical thing to do,” Ohama said. “I also realized that I am more effective in our community through a volunteer capacity. Stepping down was a hard decision, especially since all of the people involved with TRUSU are really fun, kind and exemplary humans.”
Nathan Lane, executive director of TRUSU, said that while representatives don’t often leave their positions, it isn’t uncommon either.
“At TRU it happens quite regularly, as we have a board of 19 people,” Lane said. “There are all sorts of study-abroad opportunities, co-ops and things like that. So it’s not uncommon on a board that big that you’ll have one or two people turn over throughout the year.”
Despite lacking two of their representatives, Lane says TRUSU’s operational capacity hasn’t been affected at all. The women’s representative is mainly responsible for events in the winter semester, Lane said, meaning Ohama’s resignation has had little effect on the position.
In reference to the loss of Gohar, Lane said that other members on the equity committee came together to help out with events like the the Back-to-School BBQ.
“In terms of the entertainment committee, we are really fortunate,” Lane said. “We have two members-at-large who are part of the committee, and they actually stepped up and did a bunch of work to help with the Back-to-School events to cover it off.”
Any member of the students’ union is eligible for the position of entertainment committee representative. For the position of women’s representative, you must self-identify as a woman. After a two-week application process, the executive committee will shortlist the applications before allowing the board of directors to vote on the new reps.
“I would encourage anybody who wants to get involved in the students’ union, that if you think one of these positions is for you, we are always looking to get people involved,” Lane said. “To be honest, even if you don’t think one of these positions is for you, you should try to get involved in the student caucus or as a volunteer.”
The new entertainment committee representative was expected to be appointed at TRUSU’s Oct. 3 board meeting, while the women’s rep will be appointed Oct. 17.