“Notes from Council” is The Gateway’s ongoing series of recaps of noteworthy items from Students’ Council meetings.
At Students’ Council on September 12, council appointed two University of Alberta Students’ Union (UASU) executives to the provost and vice-president (academic) advisory search committee. Council also voted to approve the first principles of the revised student spaces and deferred maintenance policy.
During Vice-president (operations and finance) Levi Flaman’s executive report, Flaman said that Week of Welcome (WoW) was a “resounding success,” and that turn-out mirrored pre-COVID-19 statistics.
“The president’s address … saw over 2,000 first-year students in attendance. Those were some of the pre-COVID-19 numbers that we were seeing,” President Christian Fotang added.
The university is looking to permanently fill the provost and vice-president (academic) role, which is currently interimly held by Dr. Verna Yiu. Fotang and Vice-president (student life) Michael Griffiths motioned to appoint two members of the UASU to the advisory committee to help fill the position.
“The vice-president (academic) and provost is a senior executive that administers academic affairs at the university. Therefore [it] is a very important position to have student consultation on,” UASU Speaker Christian Zukowski said.
Council nominated Fotang and vice-president (academic) Pedro Almeida to be on the advisory committee.
Flaman reports on delay with quotes for Dewey’s washroom upgrade
On August 15, Flaman and science councillor Laurel Ford brought a motion to council from Finance Committee. The motion was “to approve the release of funds from the Sustainability and Capital Fund (SCF) not to exceed $10,000 to pay for a Dewey’s washroom upgrade schematic design report.”
Council sent the motion back to Finance Committee with instruction to provide more funding options and two more quotes, in addition to the original quote.
On September 12, Flaman reported delays in acquiring the third architectural quote. He said the delay could result in construction occurring past May and well into the next school year.
Law councillor Damon Atwood and engineering councillor Aamir Mohamed questioned if building managers should communicate a timeline.
“It’s entirely council’s discretion on whether to put a time limit or change the number of quotes solicited,” Zukowski replied.
Flaman said he will be in communications with building managers to acquire the third quote.
Council unanimously approves first principles of the revised student spaces and deferred maintenance policy
Griffiths spoke about the first principles of the revised student spaces and deferred maintenance policy during his oral report.
“We have consolidated the deferred maintenance and student spaces policies. We felt that the topics were quite similar and it would be more efficient to have both of them in the same policy.”
Griffiths and arts councillor Mason Pich adjusted the policy to focus “more on facts pertaining to the state of student spaces on campus” and accessibility.
The first principles draw from university and UASU data on campus spaces, accessibility, and projected growth in enrolment and space reduction, according to the motion. The first principles were approved by Policy Committee.
Council unanimously approved the first principles of the revised student spaces and deferred maintenance policy. As a result, council returned the first principles to Policy Committee for further developments toward the second principles.