Elections speeches took place on the March 14 in the Whitebone Lounge. The candidates spoke in the following order: Chris Mahar, Marion Westgate, Jen Brown, Jon Cogger, Ashley Macosky and Mosab Alhabshi.
The event was broadcasted to the Local FM 107.3 radio station and has been published online for students who couldn’t attend the event but would like to hear the candidates’ speeches. Background information and campaign platform on each candidate was published in the last issue of The Baron and can be seen at www.thebaron.ca.
All speeches were followed by a short question and answer period directed at the candidate. Questions about stimulating student involvement, strengthening of the student-political impact and campus multicultural alignment (to create a closer student community) were all brought up during the Q and As.
Chris Mahar is the only candidate running for vice president external affairs. Marion Westgate, Jen Brown and Mosab Alhabshi are running for vice president student affairs; as well Jon Cogger and Ashley Macosky are running for the SRC president position. There are students running for the councilor positions, but they were not required to attend the public speaking event.
Chris Mahar spoke about his campaign platform and his goals for what he’s striving to achieve during his time as vp external affairs. Mahar spoke even though he no longer is running against any competition (earlier in the election process he did have competition). Marion Westgate and Jen Brown spoke with clarity on their objectives, as well as portraying their differing personalities as it applies to the position of vice president student affairs. Mosab Alhabshi (also running for vice president student affairs) spoke on his personal process of becoming a Canadian resident and that all of the cultures here at UNBSJ can be, if elected, maintained while working together in the coming year’s student affairs activities.
Jon Cogger was very energetic as he brought up many of the campus issues that concern him, including the “timely” completion of the Ward Chipman library. Cogger’s main topic of discussion was the tuition at UNBSJ and in NB as a whole. Cogger brought up points on possible improvements for the school in the coming year, however the tuition topic was the mainstay issue which seems quite macro and its solution was not identified.
Ashley Macosky’s speech focused on his frustration with the lack of student interest in the university’s governing and his personal frustrations regarding the campaigning process. His oratory reflected more on his current condition than his plans for the coming year. Ashley brought up some very sportsman-like comments about his agreement with Jon Cogger’s campaign platform and his appreciation for Jon Cogger’s likeminded interest in the school’s future. Macosky’s statement, “I don’t want to be the president anymore to be honest,” conflicted with the speech’s intentions of promoting himself for the SRC presidential election. However, in the Q and A period, BLee Williams asked, in order to clarify, whether Macosky was still running; Macosky responded, “oh yes. I am.” The UNBSJ voting for the SRC elections can be done through the UNB portal site, under the eServices section from the March 18 to 22.
In the 2012 SRC voting one in 20 students at UNBSJ voted, meaning your vote may sway the election more than you may think in this election. Place your votes next week and you just may be changing the election’s outcome.