October 25, 2020

Boosting resumes, building problem solving and leadership skills, and influencing the student experience at Conestoga College – this is what a position on the CSI Board of Directors can provide for a student, according to them.

The 2020-2021 Board of Directors election process started on Friday, Feb. 14, and they are filling seven directors positions.

CSI, also known as Conestoga Students Inc., is Conestoga’s official student association since 1973. They represent “the interests of over 19,000 CSI fee-paying students across all campuses,” according to their website.

According to Harshpreet Singh, CSI’s Primary Electoral Offices (PEO), they have made some changes to the whole process.

First of all , directors will not have office hours anymore.

That means the only hours they will have to work will be for meetings and “feedback hours,” which is when they are walking around campuses getting feedback from students and attending events to connect with students.

“The directors’ job description was pretty task heavy, so we took a few things out of it, such as doing office hours,” Singh said. “The board will focus more on (students’) feedback from now on … so they can go out, talk to students, without being burnt out from other tasks.”

Another relevant change they made in the elections process was related to the all candidates interview.

“(In past years,) candidates were allowed to run based on their performance in the interviews,” Singh said.  “That was not ethically right since we were allowing candidates to run based on their ability to speak English.”

With the growth of Conestoga’s international student population, this change should make CSI leadership positions more accessible to candidates from diverse backgrounds. 

Nomination packages were available last week, and candidates meetings will be happening during the last week of February. Campaigning will start right after Student Success Week, and voting will happen from March 16 to 20.

“It is a good opportunity for students to get involved,” said Shubham Khajuria. “Unfortunately, I can’t run for a director position because I will graduate in April, but I will for sure vote.”

The Spoke interviewed 24 students at random and only Khajuria was aware of the elections.

Singh said they are using their social media platforms, posters and flyers, and advertisements on screens across campuses to make students aware of the elections.

According to him, more than 1,700 students voted last year. 

“I would like for as many students as possible to run for the positions, because this way it gets more interesting for me as a board member and as a PEO,” Sing said at the end of the interview with Spoke.

CSI could not release how many people had already nominated themselves to run for the elections.

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