As the 2014/2015 academic year begins to wind down, the current BUSU executives are wrapping up their in-office term, soon ushering in the newly elected student representatives.
This year’s executive team, consisting of Roland Erman (President), Kyle Rose (Vice-president, Finance and Administration), Drew Ursacki (Vice-president, External Affairs) and Paul Dermody (Vice-president, Student Services), oversaw and successfully completed many changes on campus
Changes to bus routes, lobbying for seamless transit, working with the Canadian Alliance of Student Associations (CASA) and Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance (OUSA), raising awareness of BUSU’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) as well as running focus groups for the new Students’ Union building are a few of the many initiatives that the executives helped spearhead with students, staff, faculty and the community.
Erman, Rose, Ursacki and Dermody each commented on their experiences in their respective positions this year, reflecting on what they learned and how they will continue on with these lessons following the end of their term.
“I think one of the biggest challenges this position has is understanding that you represent over 15,000 students, all of whom can have very different opinions on a wide range of subjects. Even though you’re elected to be their voice, there are still many times (in council, in the office, etc.) where you obviously seek out and want to hear student input,” said Erman.
“This challenge isn’t a negative thing, though. At times I look at my role as a facilitator of ideas and trying to reach a common ground that is best for everyone. This job has made me realize more often than not, the challenges we face can be better answered collectively, rather than just by ourselves.”
“The word of the year is ‘delegate’. Since I didn’t have anyone working directly under me this year, I wasn’t in the habit of delegating tasks when I really should have and because of this, I ended up having to do all of the work on my own. It definitely didn’t need to be that way. Many things could have been done much more efficiently and effectively if I had just delegated when necessary,” said Rose.
“I have one instance in mind when I had the potential to utilize resources within BUSU that ultimately weren’t maximized. A big focus for the next year is making those resources much more explicit
“There hasn’t been one particular instance about this job that has surprised me. Rather, the culmination of experiences (both good and bad) and the resulting personal growth that I’ve witnessed within myself has been the most surprising. I’d be naïve to say that I didn’t expect to grow both professionally and personally while working in this position, but I did not foresee how much I would grow. This job has taught me a lot about myself and how I operate, but also how I should operate (notably during the “bad” experiences) and these lessons are integral to my success in the future. I’ve made my mistakes, and I’ve learned many lessons, and all of these experiences have helped me grow as an individual and I will take each and every lesson with me as I move forward in my life,” said Ursacki.
“Over the last year I have been able to do so many awesome things,” said Dermody.
“The best part of my job was being able to work on so many events and campaigns. It was awesome working on an event and then seeing all the excitement and fun on student’s faces. The one thing I will miss the most is the people. Brock University has had such an impact on my life. A lot of that experience was because of the people I was able to meet and to do things with. It’s the people here that made Brock University home for the last five years.”