Forums allow candidates to address students in an open environment and answer questions from their peers.
Annalisse Crosswell, Associate News Editor
With the end of the Spring semester rapidly approaching, and the end of many current student politician’s education at CapU nearing, it is once again time for elections. The candidates forums for the 2019 general election, held March 12 and 14, began the information session by introducing students to their potential CSU members for the 2019-20 academic year. The March 12 forum provided an opportunity for those running for Vice-President (VP) and Business Society of Capilano University (BSCU) positions to speak, while March 14 provided the same opportunity to CSU faculty and campus representatives and CSU collective liaisons and coordinators.
As with other years, these events did not draw in a big crowd, although there were more in attendance this year than previous ones. The number of candidates running in the election is also more promising, with a total of 27 candidates. “Each forum was very well attended. I think students at CapU are starting to realize the importance of paying attention to who gets to represent them,” said Joshua Millard, the current vice-president academic.
While there are a handful of positions that currently have no candidates and a number of candidates running uncontested, some positions have three or four students running against each other. “I wish each race was contested, but I still think the number of candidates is exceptional,” said Millard.
Though some candidates were not present for their respective forums, those that attended made a concerted effort to tell the student body what matters to them and why students should vote for them in the upcoming election. Despite the varying positions, the priorities mentioned by candidates maintained some themes and painted a picture for what the focus of next years CSU may be. Mental health, community, inclusion and student engagement, were all issues that were mentioned by several individuals.
“I love how each candidate for [Vice-President] Student Life is completely different, with a different personality and approaches the job from a different angle, ” said current Vice-President Student Life, Yats Palat. “No matter who wins, the University will be the ultimate winner.” Millard was impressed by how excited for the roles individuals seemed to be. “You could tell right away how passionate and excited each candidate was about the role they are running for,” he said.
This year’s election does differ slightly from previous years in that the BSCU, previously known as The Capilano University Business Enterprise of Students (CUBES), is a part of the electoral process. Having changed structures within the past year, the BSCU has moved from a process of being selected for their roles by teachers to being elected to their positions, with this election being the first that the group is taking part in.
Voting for the elections begins at 9 am on March 19 and ends at 5 pm March 21. CSU members will be campaigning around campus during the week, but, for those that were unable to attend the candidates forums and want to know more about their candidates, statements can be found on the CSU website.