2019 LUSU Election: Candidates for Board of Directors (Thunder Bay)

1. Annaah Malik

Tell us a little bit about yourself:

I am a fourth year student from vancouver, BC majoring in Business with an honours degree in Human Resource Management and a diploma in information systems.

Why do you want to be involved in student politics?

The reason why I want to be involved in student politics is because I want to be able to help student in making their time at Lakehead as memorable and easy going as possible.

What are three main things you hope to accomplish if elected?

The three main things that I hope to accomplish if elected are as follows:
A) providing students with more study spaces through out campus
B) more food options on campus and hopefully more tax free food during exam periods.
C) creating a more welcoming feeling to both domestic and international students by giving them a voice.

 

 

2. Feras Battah

The Argus has not received a response to the provided questions from Feras Battah. His candidate profile has been published instead.

My name is Feras Battah, I am 3rd Year Electrical Engineering student. Over the past few years I have been involved with LUSU in various capacities. I have been an active volunteer during orientation and also different events that take place at LUSU throughout the year. I am also involved actively in the student refugee program called WUSC.

If re-elected to this position, I will continue to advocate for all students and continue the fight to make education more accessible to all students. I will advocate for more safe spaces on campus for students.

 

3. Lahama Naeem 

Tell us a little bit about yourself:

My name is Lahama Naeem and I am a first year Applied Life Sciences student, running for a seat on the Board of Directors. Although it is my first year on campus, I have been actively involved in many clubs, as well as Lakehead University’s Senate. Having served as the Student Trustee for the Lakehead Public School Board, as well as President of Student Council throughout high school, I believe I possess the skills and experience to represent the students of Lakehead University.

Why do you want to be involved in student politics?

My aim is to make Lakehead an inclusive environment where all students feel welcome and can not only survive but thrive. I believe that all students should be given opportunities to reach their full potential. Additionally, I want to get involved as early as possible, rather than waiting until the 3rdor 4thyear of my undergrad degree. Many of the decisions being made now will significantly impact the new generation of students coming to Lakehead; my generation, and I want to do all that I can to bring their perspective and voice to the Board.

What are three main things you hope to accomplish if elected?

I strongly believe that to pursue their interests, all students should be given an equitable playing field. This involves a commitment to providing the proper support systems for students to be able to achieve their goals; Wi- Fi improvements all across campus, for one, as it is one of student’s largest complaints.

 I strongly believe that great leadership begins with listening, and that is what I plan on prioritizing; listening to student voice. I hope to encourage and promote the involvement of the student body by creating more opportunities for students to voice their opinions and concerns and well as engage with the Board. Additionally, there are many services that students pay for and do not know about or how to avail them. My goal will be to educate the student body of these resources, so that we may all benefit from them.

Finally, I am committed to an overachieving goal of respectful transparency. I believe in creating a transparent board, where students are informed of the Board of Directors and its decisions. While some students may not be interested or have the time to read an 80-page budget report, creating a brief summary will be helpful in keeping all students informed. As a union that represents students, it is crucial that students are informed about major decisions that involve them and their experience at Lakehead University.

 

4. Lisa Chiarelli

Tell us a little bit about yourself:

Hello fellow students and staff members my name is Lisa Chiarelli and I am currently enrolled in HB of Commerce here at Lakehead University. Studying business has enlighten me, constantly enhancing my interest in my surroundings, while increasing my curiosity about our University and how it operates. I believe I have the motivation and determination to advocate for the students at Lakehead University. I hope to make a positive change by taking initiative and proactively addressing issues that hinder Lakehead students from having the best University experience. In most cases University sets the stage for the rest of our lives. Here, you make connections, increase your network, find what interests you, find yourself and if you are lucky find your significant other. I intend to make your ride at lakehead a one to remember. I intend to be your voice.

Why do you want to be involved in student politics?

My interest has always been with people and their behavior in politics. I further hope to extend my studies into Law School and given this opportunity to advocate for the Student Union I believe this will be a great learning experience that will not only help me to be a leader but also give a voice for every student at Lakehead University. With enough determination and motivation I believe we can use this opportunity and the knowledge I have with the resources provided to me to make a difference in the lives of students. We can encourage accountability, strive for transparency and share awareness all throughout Lakehead University. I believe we can make Lakehead University a place where students can feel more comfortable and heard. Let’s make our experience at school as positive as possible. Let’s strive for greatness together!

What are three main things you hope to accomplish if elected?

If elected, I hope to find ways to help with funding, spread awareness about students with disabilities, and host more fundraisers. Tuition funding has recently become more inaccessible and unaffordable due to new OSAP regulations. Students will soon have a hard time managing their finances without the help of the government. I hope to speak with executives and have a discussion about how we can help and what we can do to make funding more accessible and affordable for students. Everyone should be given the opportunity to excel and if there is something we can do to make this possible, then I believe we can give students the motivation to accomplish the unimaginable. Let’s make Lakehead a place where students help students succeed and be the best they can be. There are many students today with learning disabilities and Student Accessibility Services (SAS) is aware of the accommodations available. I hope to spread awareness about students with disabilities at Lakehead University. I hope that by working together we can spread awareness and strive to be better. Let’s make Lakehead University a place where we come together and build each other up. Let’s volunteer ourselves for ourselves! I would love for Lakehead University to host more fundraisers! The profit could go towards to an ‘end of the month’ lunch for instance as a way of increasing food options. My ultimate goal is to build relationships and make Lakehead University a place where students can feel comfortable sharing their concerns and accomplishments with each other. As well as trusting that their concerns will be voiced. That is what I am here for, to voice it all for you and for me!

 

5. Prabjhot Ahuja

Tell us a bit about yourself: 

My name is Prabhjot Singh Ahuja, I am a third year student in Mechanical Engineering at the university. I am a International student for India. I have been a part of LUSU for almost two years earlier I was a assistant coordinator at the MCC and last year I was elected as a Board of Director for which position I am Re-Running this year. I am a part of the Finance and Operations Committee (FOC) at LUSU, it is where all the sponsorship requests come in from the students. I am also part of the Senate of the university as a student member this year. I also sit the Creed Advisory Committee, this is where we discuss on solution and actions to be taken to battle racism and inequality , besides my passion to help and serve the community I am the President of the Lakehead University Indian Student Association( LUISA ) and I have been a part many more volunteering opportunities that came by way.

Why do you want to be involved in student politics?

As an individual, I am a person of action , when I came into the union as a volunteer, I always wanted to impact lives and learn and grow along the way. I have been passionate about creating impact on someone’s life, volunteering and helping students is something I enjoy doing. I got a chance to help students as a student ambassador, which pushed me an extra notch and I wanted be of a better use where I could touch more lives and create a change, as a international students there aren’t many opportunities open to us because the government doesn’t subsidise our pay, which is where the Lakehead University Student Union came into the picture. I decided to be part of student politics and be a voice for the students in creating policies. I wanted to be part of the change I wanted in the university than complaint from the sidelines.

What are three main things you hope to accomplish if elected?

If given the opportunity to serve as a Board of Director for another term. I would create Safe Spaces where uncencored and confidential dialogue can take place, where students can speak their mind out and suggest ways in which we can tackle serious issues like Racism, Homophobia, Inequality, Mental Health and etc. I am a supporter of making new building but maintaining the current infrastructure is far more important, the quality of classrooms now does not make lakehead look exceptional or in any way unconventional. I will work with the authorities to maintain better classroom standards. I would work to create more study spaces as LUSU has currently been working on. We as Board established three new study spaces this year with one in the CB building, other in the forestry building and the third one in the Junction(tunnels below the LU Bookstore.

 

6. Victoria Erickson

Tell us a little bit about yourself:

This is my fourth year attending Lakehead University. Having graduated from Science, I am now pursuing my undergrad in Civil Engineering. I’ve been widely involved in the school community since the beginning – from publishing research to being the president of two clubs, I’ve done it all.

Why do you want to be involved in student politics?

I am running for re-election to the Board of Directors for my third consecutive year. I love being involved in student politics because I am incredibly passionate about the student movement, and advocating for student rights. Over my past two terms, I’ve been one of the hardest working and most involved directors. I have worked to amplify voices of marginalized students, maintain transparency within the union, and build strong connections with university administration. From advocacy work with the Canadian Federation of Students, to pushing student consultations on university decisions, my work has uplifted students an undeniable degree

What are three main things you hope to accomplish if elected?

This coming year, I intend to continue my work with university administration to ensure consultation with students on important decisions within the institution. I also intend to support folks working on the ground (such as clubs and centres), and ensure an equitable distribution of student funds with the upcoming budget changes.

 

7. Yamandeep Malhi

Tell us a little bit about yourself:

My name is Yamandeep Malhi, and I am a second-year undergraduate student in H.B.Sc. in Applied Life Sciences at the Thunder Bay campus.

I have been in Thunder Bay for 6 years now, and throughout this time, I have been involved in many extracurricular programs in the city and the University. For the past 5 years, I have been serving the TBRHSC with the Hospital Elder Life program, where I have trained new volunteers and also given company to long-term care patients with dementia, delirium, or Alzheimer’s. Even in high school, I used to assist the student executive team with their events. Currently, I am the Vice President of LUISA, Lakehead University Indian Students’ Association, where I am responsible for connecting with sponsors and managing funds for our events, which are organized every month to encourage students to engage in student life at Lakehead.

Why do you want to be involved in student politics?

I have learned that helping others is the highest honor that one can have, which is where my interest in student politics stems from. Throughout growing up, I have strived to be a source of help for everyone by interacting with people at all levels and volunteering for and supporting different organizations/programs. By involving in student politics, I believe that I would get more opportunities to reach out Lakehead students on a personal level and also be able to voice their concerns.

What are three main things you hope to accomplish if elected?

If I am elected, among the many things I have planned for the students, it would be on my agenda to:

  1. Develop a more enhanced career counselling center, where students are assigned a mentor;
  2. Improve communication within the student community, so that the students know about the opportunities that they’re offered on campus; and
  3. Introduce more stress management activities during final exam season.

 

8. Sukrajh Singh

Tell us a little bit about yourself: 

Hello! My name is Sukhraj Singh, and I am a third-year undergraduate student, studying Political Science Pre-Law at Lakehead University. I am running for Boards of directors, for the 2019-2020 term.

Why do you want to be involved in student politics?

As your nominee for Board of Directors, I want to provide a voice for the students while educating fellow students about all the services available to us. Not only that are available to us but all the services we pay for while focusing on creating more awareness about mental health. I understand that not all students use their resources, and I believe it can encourage students to strive in university. This way students can use the services we pay for, which will create a more accessible education resulting in a less stressful experience.
Creating more awareness about mental health and safety is very important as most students accumulate stress over time, with assignments, readings and for some with part-time or full-time jobs, we end up neglecting ourselves. This self-caused stress can be in many forms such as, not sleeping, overworking and irregular/partial meals. In other words, to prevent this from happening, creating more awareness about mental health and educating students about all services available to us, can assist with stress and time-management.
What are three main things you hope to accomplish if elected? 
If I am elected, alongside mental health awareness and publicly advertising services we pay for, I will be focusing on weekly or monthly events to make the university experience memorable. By conducting interactive events around the campus, this can not only uplift the environment but also act as a short break or refresher from studying or classes. For example, mental health awareness events can be held during exams periods, where students can receive a small snack such as popcorn or fresh fruits or even a little activity like arts and craft or coffee and chat. I will strive to find new ways to benefit the students through the wide range of school services available to us and I want to ensure that the students are heard and that actions are taken from the points we make. I hope I promote diversity, equality and opportunities through my work, as everyone deserves to be treated like the next person.
With the voting period just around the corner, I recommend ALL students go vote and support their candidates, as your vote is your voice. So make it count and vote at www.lusu.ca/vote.
The voting period beings January 31st and continues until February 5th, where polls will be located around campus or feel free to use the website.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

 

The Argus did not receive candidate profiles or responses to the provided questions from Rupinderjeet Kaur or Mohamed Zeida.

All candidates were asked the same three questions. Photos, candidate profiles and responses and were provided to The Argus by the candidates via Chief Returning Officer, Scott Klassens. They appear in the order they were sent and have not been edited.