The Results: Student Board of Governors and Senate Election 2010

By Chris Yee [Student affairs Bureau Chief]

Elections for student Senate and Board of Governors representative took place on Mar. 11-15, with students being able to vote through Kwantlen’s Web portal, MyKwantlen.ca.

According to the Kwantlen senate’s website, the senate is “the senior academic governing body at Kwantlen Polytechnic University,” responsible for “the approval of credentials, advising [to the Board of Governors] on the priorities of the university and the university budget, and selection of honorary degree recipients,” as well as setting “curriculum content for programs” and handling student appeals.

There are four student representative positions on Senate, each for a one-year term from Sep. 1 to Aug. 31 the following year.

The Board of Governors, working with Kwantlen’s President & Vice Chancellor, is responsible for setting “the direction for the University” and “monitoring its progress” toward its goals as a “teaching-led” university, as well as “representing the university to its owners through community events” (among other duties listed on the Board of Governors’ website). There are two student representative positions on the Board of Governors, also for a one-year term from Sep. 1 to Aug. 31.

Six students ran for Senate representative – Matthew DiMera, Vanessa Knight, Ken McIntyre, Derek Robertson, Josephine Thom, and Mae Velasco. Four ran for the student positions on the Board of Governors – Matthew DiMera, Ryan Keigher, Vanessa Knight, and Derek Robertson.

Ken McIntyre (38 votes), Vanessa Knight (39 votes), Mae Velasco (45 votes), and Derek Robertson (49 votes) won the contest for Senate representative, while Matthew DiMera (26 votes) and Josephine Thom (33 votes) were left out. Derek Robertson (37 votes) and Ryan Keigher (54 votes) were elected to the Board of Governors, leaving out Matthew DiMera (22 votes) and Vanessa Knight (24 votes).

While there was perhaps a fair share of incumbents running (Robertson and Thom had held positions on Senate before), some candidates were entirely new – Mae Velasco, of the Kwantlen Runner, had decided to run for Senate while working on a story on the Senate’s need for more committee members (and in an email interview, had mentioned she was “not really intending to.”)

Derek Robertson used Facebook to promote his (successful) candidacy for re-election to the Senate and re-election to the Board of Governors, along with Ryan Keigher’s Board of Governors candidacy and Ken McIntyre’s candidacy for Senate. The groups have and members , respectively, and the groups sent regular Facebook message updates to their members.

So, where to from here? The Runner had sent email interviews to find out what the candidates would like to see done and would like to promote as student representatives, and in turn received a variety of responses: extended reading breaks; more classes being provided more often; greater student involvement and awareness surrounding “student issues,” as Vanessa Knight stated in her response; or simply “more opportunities with research, financial support… a better university experience“, as Ryan Keigher envisioned in his response.

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