Candidates profile for upcoming MASU election

Executive elections to be held Jan. 28

President Dylan Wooley-Berry is MASU’s current president. Wooley-Berry said he is running for re-election because “students need an experienced president to lead them through the year, while we deal with issues such as collective bargaining and possible cuts to the operating budget. Last year I ran on a two-year plan, and think I have a responsibility to follow through on that.”

Wooley-Berry’s platform points include creating a plan for the upcoming collective bargaining, which would entail “a solid method of communicating with our members, [… and a] demand stating that the provincial government and MAFA be held accountable for lost time, in the case of a strike.” Wooley-Berry also looks to enhance wellness and mental health services and start a municipal Get Out the Vote campaign if he is re-elected.

Ryan LeBreton is the current vice-president student life. LeBreton said, ““I feel as though MASU at times does not have an environment that fosters mutual understanding and teamwork, and I believe that my leadership could help create that kind of atmosphere. My work ethic and results have spoken for themselves.”

LeBreton’s platform points include improved union services–LeBreton said he would like to see a full review of MASU services to ensure they are functioning to their best ability. LeBreton’s additional platform points include the creation of a federally funded mental health initiative in partnership with the VP external affairs, CASA, and our local MP, and lobbying for two pass/fail distribution credits.

Vice-President, External Affairs

Tierra Stokes currently holds the position of arts senator. According to Stokes, “We have the unique opportunity of being in a small community. We can more easily create social change. We are also part of organizations that can make their mark regionally and federally. I want to be a part of all of this change.”

Stokes’s first campaign point is to increase student involvement in municipal elections. This would entail encouraging students to vote in the upcoming municipal election and attempting to create a bylaw stating that future municipal elections should be held during the academic year. Stokes’s other campaign points revolve around increasing student involvement in the NBSA and CASA and attempting to create a bylaw which would declare an earliest signing date for leases, because “leases in Sackville are signed extremely early on in the academic year, which is stressful for students.”

Tina Oh is the current vice-president communications. When asked why she wants to run for VP external, Oh said, “[Mt. A] will be facing major budget cuts to post-secondary education, the closure of the Sackville Memorial Hospital, and faculty/administration collective bargaining negotiations.”

Oh’s first campaign point is to advocate for the elimination of parental contribution on bursary applications at Mt. A. Oh said: “Since the New Brunswick government has removed mandatory parental contribution from their loan application, it is only fair that the university be consistent with the province.” Oh’s other campaign points include the creation of an education/awareness campaign around the future three-stream garbage system, and direct federal and provincial advocacy. Oh said being a representative on CASA’s National Advocacy Team would be her first step.

Vice-President, Academic Affairs

Mary Emma MacNeil currently holds the position of vice-president academic affairs. MacNeil says that this year she has “developed strong professional relationships with the faculty, administration and students.” She added that she doesn’t “need to waste time and money transitioning into this position or navigating administrative proceedings.”

MacNeil’s campaign points include extending library hours, which would also include funding another Writing Resource Centre employee, advocating for the future of correspondence course tuition and developing a collective bargaining strategy. “We are prepared to ensure both parties stay at the bargaining table,” MacNeil said.

Josh Johnson is currently the MASU’s university ombudsperson. Johnson said, “ I want to leave Mt. A better than I found it.”

Johnson’s campaign points include more resources for the Writing Resource Centre, better pay for teaching assistants, and the creation of an indigenous studies minor. In regard to the minor, Johnson said, “A lot of the work has been done already, but we seem to be stuck with some red tape. If elected, I would put all my effort into finally getting this done.”

Vice-President Student Life

Anthony Maddalena is currently co-captain of the varsity soccer team and is one of the managers of the Mt. A Farm. When asked why he is running, he answered, “It’s a great opportunity to better the experience of students living on and off campus. I enjoy working with people and there are a number of things on campus that we could improve.”

Anthony’s campaign points include moving forward with the METRAC recommendations to ensure that Mt. A is accessible and safe for all students. Maddalena also said that because both the Meighen and Wellness Centres are currently funded through the operating budget, which may receive cuts, he would like to find new funding for both. Maddalena also said he “aim[s] to push the university to replace outdated and dangerous appliances with sustainable and safe ones.”

Osama Al Nammary is currently the MASU’s international affairs co-ordinator. When asked why he is running, Al Nammary said, “After working with the MASU for two years, I got frustrated; many of the things that should have been accomplished are not being done. I want to get those things done.”

Al Nammary’s campaign points include establishing and improving the MASU’s relationship with the international centre, so that international students are better included in the MASU and other students could better benefit from their services. Al Nammary also said he would review and improve student life services, and create an off-campus survival guide and an online, student-run cookbook.

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