What interested you the most about running for AUSU student council?

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    • #193904
      AUSU Office

      Question for the candidates: What interested you the most about running for AUSU students council? 🙂

    • #193908
      Natasha Donahue

      Thank you for this question!

      For me, I am very passionate about the future of Athabasca University in a holistic way, and I want to have the opportunity to continue the work I’ve been doing over the past two years.

      There are a number of areas of importance that AUSU will need to continue focusing on, and a number of areas to explore as well. I want to see our projects concerning student services, student community (both virtual and in-person community), mentorship, provincial advocacy, federal advocacy, policy work, administration and governance, and advocacy to the institution succeed with the guidance of a strong and passionate team.

      We have been able to build so many wonderful relationships between our organization and government, university stakeholders, student unions and organizations, and external stakeholders. Relationship-building is so important to me and I am excited to see where these relationships will take us and how they will help benefit our students. We have become a strong leader and role-model in terms of federal and provincial student organizations, and having the opportunity to continue in this capacity reflects well on our organization.

      We’ve been approached by multiple organizations for advice and collaboration, and I would be so excited to continue working on innovations and advocacy efforts that put AUSU at the forefront of the student movement in order to continue opening doors to new and exciting opportunities. I would consider it an absolute privilege and I would be so excited to be one of the leaders at the AUSU team helping to drive this momentum forward.

    • #193910
      Darcie Lynn Fleming

      I decided to put my name forward to become a councillor for the 2020 term because of the great experience I have had over the past two years having been elected in 2018. I have over 30 years of experience working with non-profit organizations and am a positive contributor to AUSU. Having been involved in many organizations, I was initially and continue to be very impressed with AUSU, the management and student focus. I was fortunate to work with an awesome and dedicated council that worked in the best interest of students wether through advocacy with CASA, improved funding models or mundane policy revisions. I am a member of the finance committee and have a great understanding of the budgetary process. I have gained a wealth of knowledge about the management of the organization and I believe that this experience will be a great asset in the upcoming term. There will be some challenging times ahead with tuition increases and changes in government policies and I want to be a part of the conversations to represent AU students. As with all organizations, AUSU will continue to grow and adapt, and I look forward to not only addressing the pressing issues of the day but also plan for the future and the steps needed to achieve long term goals. My time on council has been a highlight of my AU journey, and I look forward to continuing to improve student services and advocating on behalf of AU students.

    • #193922

      I had intended to enroll at AU shortly after earning my Advanced Diploma in Business Administration (HR) from Algonquin College (2015), but unexpected circumstances came about which delayed my studies, and I made the best out of those delays. From that point until last year, I kick-started my humanitarian initiative and began carrying out projects here at home but also abroad. These projects ranged from redistributing sporting goods to the delivery of non-perishable medical supplies, directly to the needy. These projects led to collaborations with Embassies and Ambassadors, National Police Forces, professional sports teams, and other major organizations. One of my many motto’s is “leave places better than I found them”, and I know that I could transfer the KSAs I accumulated in order to help lead AUSU in achieving the collective goals of our student population.

    • #193926

      When I was a brand new student to AU in the fall of 2017 elections for the AUSU 2019-2020 term were announced. I was interested and excited, however, I hadn’t yet completed enough credits to nominate my name for consideration, as I was in my first semester that was to end February 28, so unfortunately I did not participate in council at this time.

      However! Taking an active role in AUSU has been in my mind ever since and when the opportunity arose to participate in a student advisory committee I was excited and put forward my name.

      After attending an AUSU social event and subsequently attending the AUGSA graduate student research conference I walked away inspired and wanting badly to be part of the organizations that enhance student experiences and provide opportunities to connect and ask and answer questions. Having a role in the student experience and creating these opportunities for students to connect and collaboratively plan their futures sounds like an amazing thing to be a part of.

      So it is in conjunction with my experience on the student advisory committee, and my experience with AUSU and AUGSA over the last two years that interested me the most in participating with student council.

      Having witnessed the campaigning of other candidates on these forums, the AU Student App, and facebook – I feel inspired. Regardless of whether I am elected or not, I have no doubt in my mind that the AUSU council will be powerful and have meaningful effects on the experience of undergraduate students of AU and I am excited for the future.

    • #193935
      Josh Ryan

      This question caused me to think introspectively, as this will be my third time running; once in a byelection, two years ago in the general election successfully and this year.

      It comes down to something I feel was reinforced by the past two years on council and that’s having an opportunity to make a difference for our student community while working with some amazing peers with fantastic backgrounds and life experiences. Having an opportunity to have such a diverse set of perspectives and ideas around the table has allowed us to take what I’ve felt has been a very balanced, representative approach towards advocating for students with the university, with external bodies such as CASA and to the various levels of government.

      We may not have been successful in every battle, but I think we’ve accomplished great things in the last two years and I’m looking forward to what’s in store for a great organization working on behalf of students with a great institution.

    • #193938

    • #193962

      Like Katy, I began my post-secondary education right before the 2018 General Election, and therefore did not qualify for nomination at that time. Then, during the by-election, I was not “in a good place” in my personal life and despite my desire to pursue the work, would not have done the role justice if elected. Now, I feel that all the pieces have fallen into place to pursue this important work.
      My post graduation goal of working in the non-profit sector within roles related to advocacy aligns with the work of being an AUSU Councillor. When this is combined with my past work and volunteer experience, I believe that I could provide valuable contributions to the AUSU Council.

    • #193966

      Thank you for the question AUSU staff!

      Where do I even begin! I decided to run for AUSU student council two years ago because I wanted to get more involved with the Athabasca University student community. I was able to sit on the Member Engagement and Communications Committee, where we helped develop AUSU’s podcast “AUSU Open Mic,” organized Student Social events across Canada, and brainstormed a bunch of different ways to better interact and engage with our membership. Chairing the Awards Committee was also such great experience. As a group we have reviewed so many applications and handed out tons of awards and bursaries to so many deserving students. Furthermore, being elected as the VPFA gave me the opportunity to work with our incredibly dedicated executive team, where together we have accomplished so much and built so many strong relationships that will really benefit AUSU going forward. My last two years on council have been absolutely amazing and it has definitely been the highlight of my university experience, which is why I have decided to run again! I would love to be given the opportunity to continue all the work that we started!

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