December has been a busy time for our team. Amidst the craze of exams and holiday obligations, the Advocacy team has solidified considerable policy which will now ensure that a range of Working Group research topics are voted on at AGM this year. The perks of this policy include:
Encouraging council to consider all issues affecting students each year
Prioritizing issues that are most pertinent to ESSCO’s goals each year, particularly if there are issues that urgently arise
Maximizing the preparation time for each Working Group by starting its operational timeline at the start of the ESSCO year
Encouraging more students to get involved with ESSCO through advocacy and research efforts
Diversifying ESSCO’s portfolio
Additionally, a new report by our Provincial Councillor, Katie Arnold, detailing recommendations to the ESSCO Executive structure was reviewed at the December Teleconference. A key takeway from this report is the PC’s recommendation to elevate the Student Affairs Commissioner to an Executive VP Advocacy position, who will then oversee the Working Groups as well as the EDI, Outreach and Sustainability Commissioners. Perks of this include:
Streamlining the VP Services roles to be event-focused (conferences, sports, etc.)
Extending the reach of Student Affairs Commissioner
Reducing the overall workload of the VP Services (which is considerably large)
Giving the Student Affairs Commissioner a role appropriate to the amount of responsibility and work they take on
If you are interested in this, you will be able to run for the VP Advocacy position at the 2020 Annual General Meeting! Please send me an email if you have any questions or would like to learn more about my portfolio.
The EDI, Sustainability and Academic Working Groups are completing the final drafts of their data collection tools including surveys, focus group questions and the accompanying email advertising. Due to the Student Choice Initiative's uncertain future, our Ancillary Fee Working Group is currently on pause.
In addition, we have finally wrapped up our Advocacy page edits in time for the new year. New blog posts will be available describing how you can present your idea for your working group at the Annual General Meetingat McMaster University in February 2020, but be sure to contact your VP External first.
In preparation for the new year, we will be uploading the monthly reports for our Working Groups, and begin preparing the final report and presentation for AGM 2020. In January, we look forward to presenting an update to the Council of Ontario Deans in Engineering, and meeting with the ESSCO internal team for our final internal meeting before transition in the Spring.
Thank you for your interest in the Advocacy team in 2019!