Georgie Gagnon – Candidate Profile

RUNNING FOR VPFA

GeorgieGagnon

Ballot Blurb:

My name is Georgie (aka GG) and I am a 4th-year economics major. My academic background provides me with the skills needed to manage Brock’s budget in a way that enhances everyone’s wellbeing. In addition to this, I have a strong sense of how university driven communities function since I’m from Waterloo.

If elected as VPFA, I will focus on eliminating barriers that make it difficult for students to utilize their money. Students should be allowed to use savings/gift cards and should be able to access financial services from banks other than Scotiabank. Furthermore, I’d like to fill vacancies in the Pen Centre with the stores Brock students want most. This will act as a long-term community investment strategy.

Altogether, I wish to create and leave behind a foundation that will increase Brock’s competitive role relative to other universities. Cheers!


Candidate Interview:

  1. To the best of your understanding, what is the role and responsibilities of the VPFA?

“There are several factors to the role of VPFA. From a technical standpoint, the VPFA is in charge of managing student-related expenses in a way that best resolves the current issues Brock students are facing. This is why there is such an important focus on healthcare and transit; the students simply are not satisfied. Also, the VPFA is given a budget to roll out his/her own platform ideas. From a community standpoint, the VPFA is one of four positions elected to represent the Brock student body. The VPFA is not only a part of the BUSU team but also BUSAC and Brock Senate. This means the VPFA has a say in the most important decisions being made. It’s important for the VPFA to be present, well informed, and posses not just the analytical skills needed for optimization of expenses, but also the right social skills in order to maintain healthy relationships with all members of Brock’s community.”

  1. Why have you decided to run for the position of VPFA?

“I have been working since the age of 10. You can imagine how many different jobs and job experiences (both good and bad) I have accumulated over the last 12 years. I have been serving for three years now and in this industry, I have faced some really frustrating challenges as a young worker. This whole time I pushed through telling myself, “This is only temporary. One day I will have my degree and a good job but for now, I need to suck it up and do what I need to do to pay my rent and get through school”. I’ve been itching to put what I’ve learned to use because not only do I love what I study but I’ve worked really hard and I have the academic achievements to show for it. I’m confident in my ability to represent the Brock student body in the role of VPFA.”

  1. Why do you believe you should be elected VPFA?

“I should be elected because I’m the most well-rounded individual currently running for this position. I not only have the academic experience required to perform this job but I genuinely understand the struggles of students. I spent my entire childhood as a foster kid and I know what it’s like to work twice as hard as everyone else to get to where I am. I know what it’s like to have no one to rely on but myself because I grew up without a loving and supportive family. I want to be a role model and someone the student body can rely on to perform the VPFA duties with their best interest in mind. My life experience provides me with rare characteristics that are important to being a strong leader and this sets me apart from my competitors.”

  1. If you needed to summarize your platform into three main issues at Brock that you believe need to be addressed, what would they be? How do you plan to address these issues?

“I’ve developed my platform into three clear focuses and goals that are based on the short run, medium run, and long run. In the short run, I plan to bring forward the progress BUSU has made concerning transit and the introduction of OHIP plus. I decided not to focus my platform on these issues because I know that the solutions to these problems won’t be solved in one year, and in fact, it will take several. I don’t believe that bringing in a new VPFA each year with new and creative ways to solve the transit issue is helpful. There’s zero consistency in this and that is why I think it’s best to wait until I hold the position before I develop a strategy to deal with so.”

Otherwise, I have laid out my platform as so:

Short run focus: bringing forward the progress BUSU has made in terms of transportation and introduction OHIP plus.

Short run goal: place the responsibility of the student/Thorold resident conflict on the Niagara Regional Police in order to bring back the Winterberry route. Also, optimize the savings opportunity borne through OHIP plus.

Medium run focus: making it easier for students to use their money, as we don’t have a whole lot of it.

Medium run goal: allow for the use of savings, points, and gift cards on campus. Also, instituting financial services other than Scotiabank.

Long run focus: increase Brock’s competitive advantage, as it is financially important to attract as many applicants as possible.

Long run goal: the short and medium run goals play into making student life easier and hence, more desirable. Moving forward, if elected I will hold a student survey and a student vote to see which stores the Brock students want to bring to the Pen Centre. This will act as a long-term community investment as it will help slow the turnover rate the Pen Centre has been experiencing during my three and half years here at Brock while also making the general area more favourable to live in.”

  1. If elected what would you do differently from past VPFA’s?

“I think what is unique about my platform is that I am focusing on long-run achievements versus short-run achievements. I understand that I likely won’t be around to watch a lot of my ideas unfold but it’s necessary to create a solid foundation meant to resolve some of the more pressing issues the Brock students are dealing with. During my time at Brock, I haven’t seen many platforms show highly visible achievements so this is one of my goals. I am a very practical person so I’ve created my platform in a way that includes ideas with different levels of feasibility. I am fully aware of the difficulty of achieving some of my goals but what’s important is bringing in a leader who is willing to face such challenges.”

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