BoG representative candidate would benefit from more ideas 

Having more ideas would leave for a more well-rounded platform that would reach all students.

As per previous years, the Board of Governors’ (BoG) representative position is uncontested. While this is a disappointment for students, what’s more disappointing is Adrien Lam’s lack of diverse ideas to address campus issues. Two forums in, Lam has expressed few concrete ideas, instead filling in the gaps with broad generalizations instead. 

With the Augustana Campus and Campus Saint-Jean (CSJ) forums under her belt, students should have heard a diverse array of platform points from Lam already. Instead, what students got was Lam suggesting a platform for students to anonymously share their concerns and feedback. This was to address concerns about Augustana and CSJ being lumped together or forgotten by North Campus. Lam acknowledged this, expressing that the unique cultures of Augustana and CSJ are important to the University of Alberta community as a whole. At both the Augustana and CSJ forums, she presented this idea of a feedback platform.

Lam has made it clear that she’s aware of Augustana and CSJ’s problems getting lumped together. That’s why it’s especially interesting to me that her proposed solution further lumps them together. At both forums she did not go into specifics. Nor did she provide necessary information on how this would be reflected in her role.

Lam said that the program would sort the top student concerns, which she’d present to BoG. Unfortunately, she doesn’t elaborate on how this would address the specific, unique needs of CSJ and Augustana students. It’s hard to reach all students with one broad platform point — especially students with very specific needs.

Throughout her statements at both Augustana and CSJ, Lam demonstrated a clear understanding of the issues students are facing. However, she didn’t present many solutions, or how she would advocate for these issues. Instead, she just reiterated what these issues were. While Lam might be showing that she understands students’ needs, she isn’t showing that she has a plan for addressing them, and that concerns me. 

It’s not that the feedback platform is all she’s running on. She does present other ideas in her platform, which addresses student connection and international student issues. However, I would have liked to see a more fleshed-out platform. I would have especially liked to see other ideas also prioritized in the forums. 

Overall, Lam isn’t a bad candidate. She does have some original ideas, such as the feedback platform she plans on developing. I just worry she doesn’t have enough ideas, and will get stuck reiterating the same few points the whole campaign. 

Anna Bajwa-Zschocke

Anna was the 2023-24 Opinion Editor and is in media studies. Usually she can be found amongst colour coded sticky notes, nerding out about European history, bad reality TV, or some new book

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