On Wednesday, Jan. 15 in Thistle 325 as part of a mandatory practice to constantly keep students involved, Brock University Student’s Union (BUSU) held the second Annual General Meeting of the year. BUSU is required to hold two Annual General Meetings (AGMs) each school year between May 1 and Oct.15 and Oct.15 and Feb.15. Any and all students are invited to hear from executive members, ask questions, and gain insight into BUSU as a corporation. If enough students attend, the by-laws can be amended or enacted or at least brought up for discussion.
As stated on BUSU.net, “These [AGM’s] are times for all members of the corporation (including all Undergraduate Students) to meet to discuss the business of the corporation. An official General Meeting must have at least 2% of its members to be an official meeting…If quorum is not met, the meeting is used as an information session for interested students.” For an AGM to make quorum, only 300 out of 18,000 that make up Brock have to attend, totalling 2 per cent of the body. Sadly only about 26 students were in attendance. 26 out of 18,000. That’s just 0.0014 percent of the Brock University population. As a result, the night went on as an information session.
After a brief announcement from President Cooper Millard about the change of direction for the meeting, platforms were presented from all four executive members, which brought everyone up to speed with what they have done with their campaign so far and left to do.
Liv Meriano, Vice President of Student Services, gave a brief overview of the plethora of student-related activities she has implemented so far, punctuated by a heartfelt plan to provide more mental health resources for students from now until April. Chris Yendt, Vice President Financial Services, gave a financially savvy report on expenses so far and updates on the bussing system for Hamilton campus students (See page 4 for full story). Roland Erman, Vice President of University Affairs spoke extensively about the various committees he works with in order to provide a well rounded and competitive edge to BUSU as a corporation and Brock University as an institution. President Cooper Millard kept it professional and hopeful for the last 4 months of his term. Each executive had a question period at the end of their presentation, but the questions were minimal, usually for clarification purposes.
A presentation by Brandon Vrysen from the Student Justice Centre (SJC) about current services, the new office location and the increase of use within the student food bank. The SJC is always looking for volunteers and encourage students to stop by the new office in Thistle to Scotia bank.
BrockTv also presented a presentation and excitedly encouraged students to follow the upcoming elections on either their Youtube channel or Livestreams. All information can be found at Brocktv.ca
Overall, while a few students asked questions and the executives and represented answered thoroughly, the meeting could have had a much different outcome if even a few more students attended. If a couple hundred students would have cleared their schedule and attended, maybe there would have been more information relayed without question. If just 274 students attended, quorum would have been reached; discussions would have increased and changes would begin.
The next AGM is not scheduled until next year unless otherwise stated, however, Brock University Student Advisory Council( BUSAC) meets every other Tuesday in the 13 floor board room of Schmon Tower. The next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday Jan 21. February is referendum season and the election process for a new executive team- all the more reason to get involved and stay up to date.
As with ay student government, the government of politics are only applicable when they are student powered. Without the student body, the decisions being made reflect that of councils and maybe not necessarily the opinion you have in mind. Did you know that because you pay undergraduate fees, you are a member of BUSU? Why wouldn’t you take the time or effort to see what you’re paying for? Think of BUSU politics as you would take as a mandatory course evaluations you fill out at the end of the term; that’s your one shot to really express how you feel about your professor, the material, classroom set up and your entitled opinion on your course. You can either fill out that scantron sheet to fully reflect how you feel or just circle every option as ‘good’ and hurry out to catch the early bus.
BUSU is yours, this school is yours, the choice is yours.