Highlights from the 2017-2018 Executive Action Plan

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Xin Niu Zhang
Communications Assistant
Thu, 10/19/2017 - 12:30

Each year, Feds Executives put together an Action Plan to outline the goals they will be striving to achieve during their term in office.

You can access the full version of the Executive Action Plan (PDF) on feds.ca. For an idea of what to look out for, we’ve asked each member of the Executive team to share what they consider the most exciting highlights of this year’s Action Plan.

Antonio Brieva – President

“My main focuses this year in terms of representing students are mental health on campus and sexual violence prevention.

“With mental health, I’m working with the President’s Advisory Committee on Student Mental Health (PAC-SMH) to write a report to the University President outlining recommendations on what the institution needs to improve in terms of student mental health on campus. We’re taking a very holistic approach in looking to improve how we handle student mental health as an institution. I think we need to be transparent about the work we’re doing and make sure that students have the space and room to ask tough questions about the work we’re doing, and get some of their feedback.

“The Q&A Panel on Mental Health after the October Annual General Meeting on October 24 will be a big opportunity for that.

“The other big focus for me this year is sexual violence prevention and ensuring survivors of sexual violence have the support they need both on campus and in the community. Policy 42 just came into place in January so we’ve formed a committee reviewing that policy to ensure we get it right and that all the procedures are survivor-centric. I’m also representing Feds on the sexual violence task force at the Waterloo Regional Police. We’re advocating to make sure survivors in the community have an option to go to the police if they so choose. We want to make sure there are no roadblocks or barriers to any pathways of investigations they may wish to pursue. Finally, we’re working with the Equity Office and groups on campus to raise awareness on consent. We’re planning a variety of events on consent education to tackle that issue and hopefully we’ll have more information as things come together.”

Brian Schwan – VP Operations & Finance

“As promised, we are now serving craft beer selection at The Bombshelter Pub with many taps rotating on a term-by-term basis.  As a complimentary piece, we have developed a new menu at The Bomber and have introduced many new items at Feds retail services like International News to increase the variety of options on campus.

“Another highlight for me is the legal insurance survey, which we are in the process of finalizing. Students will be able to provide feedback on the appetite for student legal insurance on campus.  It will be a great opportunity to understand if there is a need for this service for UWaterloo students.”

Schwan endeavours to have the results of the legal insurance survey by January 2018, and if the feedback indicates interest from students to receive legal insurance, the idea will be brought to Students’ Council to determine if there is enough support for a campus-wide referendum.

Jill Knight – VP Internal

“The number one thing that I am really looking forward to is continuing the development of the Society Relations Commissioner (SRC), who is a part-time student hired to help with student societies. This role has been around for a couple years now but is playing a more hands-on role than before. The SRC helps with some of the day-to-day operations with societies, but is also available to help societies stretch to be the best that they can be in their long-term goals. The SRC is so beneficial for student societies and can be an amazing resource for all the societies to utilize. I look forward to seeing how this role improves communications with societies, assists in cross-faculty programming, and provides more support for our societies on and off campus.”

The development of this student role is a part of Knight’s long-term goal of continually strengthening relationships between Feds and the different student societies.

Andrew Clubine – VP Education

“The co-op fee review has been a big part of my platform, and one of the things students are most interested in. We are currently forming a Student Advisory Panel, and this group will be our regular feedback mechanism for the review project. We’re also doing general consultations across campus to collect student opinions. The review will take most of this year, if not bleed into next year, and I think everyone is really eager to discuss what the co-op fee is for and what it’ll look like in the future.

“Another big focus outlined in the Action Plan this year is the services we provide students in need of academic recourse or accommodation, or provincial advocacy. We’re beefing up our resources to help students through situations like academic grievances or petitions. We are reviewing Policy 72 on student appeals; we’re hoping to streamline the processes in place for formally challenging grades, and ensure those processes make more sense to students. In terms of provincial advocacy, an example is how we’re further helping students who have problems with housing or landlords. I’ll be doing a consultation with the Ontario Ministry of Housing. We want to get involved with publishing a standardized lease tenants can request, so students no longer have to go through the stress of challenging potentially illegal items on leases from their landlords.”

Check out Andrew’s video series on the Feds Facebook page for more information on advocacy and the co-op fee review.

Want to learn more about what’s going on with any of the above? Attend Feds October Annual General Meeting at the SLC on October 24, or submit votes by proxy if you can’t be there in person.