Elections: time to run
SAITSA elections are just around the corner. The Weal sat down with Martin Cruz, governance and compliance coordinator for SAITSA, and talked about the importance of getting involved in student government. The Executive Council is an opportunity to expand on leadership and advocacy through representation of the student body.
The Weal: Why should students run for Executive Council?
Martin Cruz: Representing your peers is an opportunity of a lifetime. Not only are you gaining new friends, but professional and personal skills too. All students who pay SAITSA fees, and who are interested in gaining leadership and public administration skills are encouraged to visit the elections page on saitsa.com
TW: What kind of experience can a student expect when running in the election?
MC: The campaign period alone teaches you valuable skills. It gets you out of your comfort zone by talking to students and getting involved and educating them on what SAITSA provides. It’s an opportunity to learn about student governance and share the services and programs that students don’t know about. The campaign period is an essential part for students to share with their candidates what their wants and needs are.
TW: What can an elected student expect to achieve once elected?
MC: Being a student leader has challenges, but at the end of the year you reflect on what you’ve done and how you’ve made the lives of students better. For example, the Student Support Centre was brought in through SAITSA advocacy by request of the students.
TW: What are the benefits of being an Executive Council member:
MC: You get paid! Also, continuing your education through one class a semester is covered. You also get to network – what better way to engage with others then giving back to students? You have a platform that you are able to use to make students’ lives better.
TW: Why is it important for students to vote?
MC: Being a student executive is an honour, but also a big responsibility.
Students need to vote because, as a paying member of SAITSA, they have the right to decide who represents them, not only within SAITSA, but within SAIT, three levels of government and the community. They’re the voice for students.
To better prepare students who are interested in running, the following workshops will be taking place:
Nominations open Feb. 15. Students who are interested can learn more by visiting saitsa.com