The By-Election Race has Begun!

October 13th, 2017

The Candidates Running for VP Finance and the Board of Directors Faculty Representatives are finalized.

The By-Election Candidates for the vacant Students’ Union positions were finalized on Sunday and have started their campaigns. The Vice-President Finance and Operations position, which ran unopposed last year, has a total of five candidates this year. Additionally, there are several Board of Director positions that are also being voted in. Debates will be held on Friday, September 13 in the Student Union theatre (UNC 106) from 3:30-5:00. Polls for all the positions will be open on Wednesday, September 18 until Thursday, September 19 in the Arts building foyer.   There is one candidate without a listed biography, Prashant Verma, who is also running for Vice President Finance and Operations.

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Romil Jain – 3rd Year, Economics Student (VP FINANCE CANDIDATE)

I chose UBC Okanagan because of its perfect blend of diversity and open-mindedness of its student community. At UBC Okanagan I have revived the Cricket Club, been involved with Age- Link club and helped in organizing numerous on and off campus events as a blueprint member. I have decided to run for VP finance this year because I am sure that I can bring along positive changes and maximize the use of every penny for the wellbeing of our student community. My campaign revolves around my 3 core principles: integrity, accountability and responsibility. As a VP Finance candidate some of the key changes that I propose will involve further communication between the clubs and SUO, increased transparency by making sure that student body is aware of where exactly their funds are being allocated, and creating greater quantifiable impact maximization of events and forums, therefore achieving the three pillars of my campaign. Feel free to come say hi or ask me anything you are curious about regarding my campaign or me. Looking forward to meeting you all on campus. 

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Kelly Lu – 3rd Year, Faculty of Arts Student (VP FINANCE CANDIDATE)

Throughout my 3 years at UBCO, I have been involved as a student senator in the UBCO Senate, a VP of Events for ASA, and an executive member of Harmony, among others. My involvement in the student government provided me with an understanding of the government structure at UBCO. I am well aware of how things work around campus and am able to set up realistic and achievable goals. Using my past experiences with club finances, I will offer my time and support to new clubs to help manage their finances. In addition, I am pledging to make the club schedules for finance applications available before the term starts to allow club leaders more time to plan out their finances for the term. This will be beneficial as many clubs struggle with time management and organization at the beginning of the term. Another key point of my campaign platform is to create monthly reports of expenses to share with the executive board. In comparison to the current method of sharing reports annually, sharing reports more often will give the executive board, including the board of directors, a better picture of where our money is going. This will make it easier for the board to help improve spending. To help with this process, I would like to bring in a third-party group such as KPMG, to give our team financial advising. This way, the executive board will know exactly how to reach their goals, financially. The new team of executives have great teamwork and supportive relationships; I look forward to helping our team of leaders to reach their promised goals. At the end of the day, the student union is a group of students that prioritizes the students’ choice. I will work hard to support the students and the growth of our campus.


Amy Park – 4th Year, Psychology Student (VP FINANCE CANDIDATE)

I decided to run for the position of VP Finance this year because I felt that I have built the necessary experience, as an incredibly involved student on campus, to have a thorough understanding of the dynamic of the UBCSUO and UBCO community. Over the course of my time at UBCO, I served as a Director at Large and Vice President of Internal Affairs, as well as being a Senator at Large on the UBC Student Senate Caucus. During this time, I had the opportunity to learn by voting in favour of UBCSUO budgets, appointing Chief Returning Officers, organizing campus events, including EXPO day, and working on programs such as the WUSC Student Refugee Program. As the Vice President of Internal Affairs, I also facilitated and contributed to initiatives such as January’s Sexual Assault Awareness Month, the 2016 SlutWalk, the Resource Centre tent at Recess, and 2017’s Destress Day. As a Senator, I worked with our Okanagan Student Senate Caucus to address mental health concerns over the proposed interdisciplinary Interprise program. Outside of the UBCSUO and Senate, I worked for the UBCSUO Resource Centre as an event coordinator for the Pride Resource centre and was involved as a leader for both Create and Destination UBC. I have been highly involved in student life during my time at UBCO, and want to contribute my experience to supporting our students from a representative and accountable Student’s Union. Most importantly, I am ready to dedicate my time and effort into being reliable, committed, and knowledgeable when addressing student concerns and UBCSUO affairs.

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Robert MacDonald – 3rd Year, International Relations Student (VP FINANCE CANDIDATE)

Congrats! You got through some of the candidate’s biographies, you are now the 1%! I like Rick & Morty, snowboarding at Big White, and puppers/doggos. I am running for VP Finance & Operations because I can make real changes to the SUO office, not fake ones. My campaign includes a strategic plan in making sure if you don’t do work, you don’t get paid. Right now, SUO members do not have to submit any of their public monthly reports, and they still get paid regardless. For Executives, that’s about $675.00 CAD Bi-Weekly (after taxes), and for Board members about $150.00 CAD monthly. My campaign is about stopping that. I plan to make it so SUO Executives and Board Members must submit monthly reports, including ALL expenses. If they do not submit their reports, they will be denied their Honoraria for that month. I can do this by receiving approval on a resolution with the Board of Directors, which hold their meetings monthly. The result will be that any student will be able to see what the SUO is spending its money on every month! Students reserve the right to know what THEIR money is being spent on. My plan gives them that right. I am also planning on making second term club funding easily accessible to clubs and course unions. I plan on giving more money to clubs that can make original ideas for events, and that are fun and engaging for students. A simple guy making the complicated uncomplicated. Please consider that when you go to vote.

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Djordje Kovacevic – 1st Year, Management Student (FACULTY OF MANAGEMENT REPRESENTATIVE CANDIDATE)

My name is Djordje and I am a first-year Management student. As a new student, I made it a priority to join valuable clubs where I can learn, grow, inspire others, and enhance my skills. I believe my previous work experience, as a manager for nearly two years, has given me leadership, commitment, organization, and communication skills, as well as the drive to motivate my team and me to be as successful as possible. I was dealing with thousands of people and that has really helped me understand different types of personalities and how to approach them, ensuring they felt as comfortable as possible. These skills and values I attain will surely be useful to the Representative’s role. I decided to run for the Faculty of Management Representative because I am extremely passionate about this discipline and I want to help my peers immerse themselves in our amazing faculty. Currently, I am involved with the JDC West team and it has inspired me to continue to immerse myself with student clubs and meet as many like-minded people as possible. Furthermore, I believe that individuals have the ability to be the change what they want to see. I am interested to get more management students involved into all of these amazing opportunities provided. This would be accomplished by encouraging students and informing them about the benefits that involvement will have for them. I strongly believe that empowering students and noticing an opportunity for improvement is crucial to student success, which would be ultimately accomplished by effective workshops and events. If elected I will do everything in my power to make sure that the goals of our faculty become a reality. I am serious about success for every student in the Faculty of Management, as they will become the future leaders of the world.

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Maher AL-Hawarneh, 2nd Year, Civil Engineering Masters Student (GRADUATE SCHOOL REPRESENTATIVE CANDIDATE)

My name is Maher and I joined the UBCO as a student in the M.Sc. of the Civil Engineering program. I am currently in my final year towards my degree. During this, I was exposed to many courses, met great people and got the opportunity to be a member of many societies. This expanded my horizon, gave me the opportunity to be engaged in team work, and handed me a better understanding of the problems student face and how these societies could intrinsically share an improved experience to the students. Before deciding to run, I wanted to be familiarized with these societies, how they endure and sustain themselves, and, more importantly, how success was measured and aspirations were translated into functional and dynamic group work. Thus, I was engaged with the CSCE as a Vice President, I was also privileged to be an executive member of the MSA; I carried much of the success into this society, there were many challenges during my time there which, we overcame with a dynamic team working.  These opportunities exposed me to areas where I believe I can now positively contribute. My platform will run on: the automating of decision process (this will shorten the time tickets get reviewed), increasing the quality of the service, and measuring the output of societies (through benchmarking).  Overall the goal is to deliver better service to the societies that serve a major stakeholder in the UBCO community. I have had positive relations with many of my peers throughout my time here and my previous work experience, and I look forward to working with a new team. I believe I have the capability, capacity and motivation to take a further challenge ahead.

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Michael Gauld – 4th Year, Sociology Student (FACULTY OF ARTS REPRESENTATIVE CANDIDATE)

Being involved in local politics and studying aspects of Canadian student movements, Michael hopes to bring what he has learned to the Board of Directors. Passionate about student groups such as the sociology course union and as a founding member of a local sustainable development club, it was a natural fit to pursue a role in the student union. After conducting primary research over the summer as part of a research award, interest was sparked to further engage with the student union in hopes of enacting progressive and efficient changes on and off campus. Therefore, pursuing the vacant faculty of art’s chair was logical. With encouragement from friends and peers, Michael decided to run in the 2017 by-election with ambitions to facilitate the current members while maintaining the voice of the many Arts students on campus. Previous experience with the student union focused on helping peers in the 2017 general election. Grateful for a well-functioning government, Michael believes that a student union is most effective with high participation from students. Along with fluid and critical dialogue between faculty representatives and executive members, the board of directors can be an effective apparatus. Following graduation in 2018, he is planning on attending law school or a master’s degree in sociology in the fall. In his free time, Michael enjoys the many music venues and local hospitality that Kelowna has to offer, but most importantly he is a David Bowie fan.

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Yen-Lin Tseng – 2nd Year, Faculty of Arts (FACULTY OF ARTS REPRESENTATIVE CANDIDATE)

Hey! It’s Yen-Lin, and I’m running for Faculty of Arts representative. I’m a second-year Arts student intending to major in PPE (Philosophy, Politics, and Economics). Originally from Taipei, Taiwan, but raised in Coquitlam, B.C., Shenzhen, China, and Hong Kong, I’ve experienced many cultures while growing up, and I’m trilingual — fluent in English, Mandarin, and French, making it easy for me to relate to many people. I’ve been involved in Model United Nations and Debate since middle school, and I’m confident in my ability to advocate for and represent my faculty. Together, we can make this institution a better place for all!

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