Wrapping Up the 2023-24 Governance Year 

Published: Wednesday, May 8, 2024

That’s a wrap on this governance year! Your 2023-24 WUSA President has some parting words for you:

Dear Undergraduate Students,  

I hope that you are all doing well and have enjoyed the short reprieve after exams or the end of your co-op jobs. I wanted to reflect upon my time as President of WUSA and the amazing things that we were able to achieve over the past year.  

Though you may not believe it now, the time that you spend at university will fly by much faster than you think. It is important that you are taking the time away from your academic studies to focus on enjoying this through hanging out with friends, meeting new people, or getting involved throughout the campus community. In my previous messages to students, I encouraged, and will continue to encourage, students to get involved. Whether that be with WUSA, your faculty society, program society, clubs, or the broader KW community, wherever you choose to get involved you will be making a meaningful difference for yourself and those around you. 

Looking at the list of things that WUSA was able to achieve over the past year is truly astonishing to me. Seeing the changes day to day pales in comparison to the view that is seen when you begin to take a step back. Change is a constant, but often slow-moving beast. When you commit to improving, if only a little, every day it is incredible. 

This year has not been without its challenges, but it is vital that when these challenges do arise that they are confronted head on, and that work is done to improve so that we do not tread the same path. My hope is that I have prepared the incoming Board to be better prepared for the challenges that may lie ahead.  

 I can say that the returning Directors are all incredible people with lots of experience to aid in the rest of their time on the Board, and after seeing the new officers and incoming board members during the WUSA Board retreat I feel confident about the continuity and continued improvement of WUSA. At the end of the day, they are all amazing people with their own experiences, knowledge, and passions that they bring to the Board.  

I want to thank every undergraduate student for the opportunity to represent you and work hard to improve your experience at the University of Waterloo. I want to wish you all good luck with the rest of your time at university and whatever comes after. It has been great to meet and talk with many of you over my time as president.  


Rory Norris 

2023-24 Highlights: 

  • 📈 Historic Election Turnout 
    • We saw a record-breaking turnout for the WUSA General Election, with 1 in 4 students coming out to vote for their student leaders! Read more about the election results here. 
  • 📢 Advocacy: Amplifying Student Voices 
    • Launch of the Housing Playbook, a one-stop shop for all your housing and tenancy-related questions, and other resources. 
    • Regular meetings with university administration, including participation in the committee that approved the construction of a new residence for students. 
    • Representation at Waterloo’s Town and Gown Committee, including working on a new report on housing supply, conversations around large street gatherings, and participating in working groups on international students and food security! 
    • We worked on new advocacy stances and policy papers with the Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance (OUSA) on experiential education, local and regional transit, off campus housing, gender based sexual violence, racism and religious discrimination, international students, and mental health! 
      • Stay tuned to our Advocacy page where our official stances will be uploaded! 
    • WUSA representatives participated in OUSA Lobby Week at the provincial level, and UCRU’s Lobby Week at the federal level to advocate for better support for post-secondary education!  
    • WUSA joined the Canadian Alliance of Student Associations (CASA) as an observer member, and participated in committees, strategic planning meetings, and Advocacy Week!  
    • We also put together a cookbook that collected some of our member’s favourite meals that remind them of home!  
      • Stay tuned to our Advocacy page where this cookbook will be uploaded! You’ll also have the option to recommend dishes to be added to the cookbook, so keep an eye out! 
  • Enhancing Campus Life 
    • The creation of a Board Outreach Plan helped foster meaningful engagement between students and their leaders! 
    • You voted to put money behind new spaces on campus and the Board made it happen! SLC’s Lounge on 3 is open and boasts cool lighting, tons of outlets, and lots of seating for all your study needs.  
    • The second Turnkey Desk opened in the Davis Centre, so when you need Turnkey across campus, it’s there!  
    • We started collecting feedback on events through our Representative Survey Platform (RSP) so we can deliver more of what you want.  
    • We continued our work around safety on campus this term, with the RSP on Student Safety, the Red Zone campaign, and the collaboration with the Sexual Violence Prevention and Response Office (SVPRO) on the consent calendars! 
    • We also increased support to societies by creating a “How-To” manual and by hiring a new Societies Relations Officer. 
  • 🪿 On-going work 
    • Updates on Member-Submitted Motions from the 2023 AGM – We’re still working on those motions, including the goose statue, submitted at the 2023 AGM! You can find an update here 
    • Keep an eye out for a new food vendor in SLC, launching later this term! 
    • We’re also continuing our work with the University to create a new Ombuds Office.  

Thank you to our 2023-24 Board of Directors for their dedication, hard work, and accomplishments over the last year. They have made a lasting impression on our campus community, and we look forward to seeing what this new Board will accomplish during their tenure!  


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