The Candidates

Scroll down the page to meet your 2022 Candidates (by position) for the upcoming UVSS Board of Directors Election and Referendum.

This year, we have 10 candidates for the 5 Lead Directors, 1 candidate for the Director of International Student Relations, and 17 candidates for the 10 Directors-at-Large.


Lead Directors

Campaigns & Community Relations

David Wu

My name is David, and I’m currently a third-year Visual Art student. I’m also a senator-elect representing the students of the Faculty of Fine Art. I am seeking your support for changing the current UVSS in this election as your Director of Campaigns & Community Relations. If elected, I strive to bring Accessibility, Availability and Accountability to the new UVSS.  

PLATFORM GOALS

1) Accessibility

  • Lower tuition for both international and domestic students.
  • Lower UVSS Fees.
  • Make Hybrid Learning Mandatory for all classes. 
  • Reduce textbook requirements for all courses, so they cost less, even free.

2) Availability

  • Work to increase student housing availability, both on and off-campus. 
  • Used textbook donation bank that provides free used textbooks for student 
  • Official UVSS Discord Server for Q&A and virtual events. 
  • Better Media outreach on YouTube and other social media to provide clear communication.  
  • UVSS petition portal that opens to all UVSS members.

3) Accountability

  • Hold UVSS Accountable to Perform its Duty.
  • Hold UVSS Accountable to its Actions 
  • Ensure UVSS accurately represents the student body during collective bargaining with the University of Victoria. 

Together, WE will make UVSS great again to improve YOUR student experience at Uvic!

Thank you for your time and consideration!

Izzy Adachi

Hi UVic! My name is Izzy Adachi. I am a political science student with two years of non-profit board experience, including a term as DaL for the UVSS in 2020. I currently serve on the board of directors of the Worker Solidarity Network. I also organized a union and bargained for the first successful union contract for a corporate Starbucks in North America. I hope to use my experience in advocacy, policymaking, and organizing in order to help reform the UVSS to be more democratic, and open up more avenues for participation for students. Through collective action, I believe we can make meaningful change on the issues students care about. I strongly believe that the UVSS has an important role in building solidarity and community on campus, and hopes to be able to help build on its potential. Campus should be a safe, affordable, and fun place for students of all backgrounds.

SOLIDARITY

  • Advocating an End to Unpaid Practicums, which primarily affect students entering women-led fields
  • Strengthening our Rent with Rights to include building a CRD tenant’s union
  • Working with the Canadian Alliance of Student Associations to increase student’s negotiating power through collective action.

WELLNESS

  • Rethinking Mental Health by advocating for flexibility from professors on due dates and recorded lectures
  • Advocate for a hybrid approach to learning during and beyond the pandemic

DEMOCRACY

  • Improve our web voting capabilities to make UVSS more democratic
  • Reduce quorum for referendum from 15% to 7% in order to fix the broken referendum system
  • Reduce necessary signatures on referendum petitions from 10% to 5%.
  • Create online infrastructure to facilitate referendum question petitioning.
  • Town Halls with PDUs and Course Unions to understand the viewpoint of underrepresented faculties

Finance & Operations

Charles Lithgow

My name is Charles and I have been a humanities student at UVic for 4 years. I’ve decided to run for Director of Finance and Operations because I believe that the UVSS could be doing more to engage students and represent their needs, we are supposed to be the students’ union after all! I want a UVSS that is financially responsible and makes things better for all students. If elected I promise to do everything I can to open communication between the board and the students it represents so that we can have a union that is active and accountable. I can use a spreadsheet and I will do my best, so please consider voting for me!

Leo Prosalendis

Hey folks! My name is Leo Prosalendis and I am running for the position of Director of Finance and Operations. I am majoring in economics and enrolled in my second year at UVic. 

Director of Finance and Operations usually isn’t seen as a glamorous position, however student sentiment towards budget handling has put it in the spotlight. This is my first time as a candidate for a position on the Board of Directors, where I hope to address criticisms with straightforward and transparent solutions.

For the sake of making as much impact as Finance Director, I have decided to prioritize two issues. Firstly, making UVSS’s budget and decision-making process as transparent and accessible as possible. Secondly, prioritizing affordability of school supplies and textbooks in the SUB, with special consideration for low-income and marginalized students.

Budget Transparency and Student Dialogue

  • Propose a special resolution to the board to create protocol in case of stranded funds.
  • Referendum to decide where the funding will be delivered to: if the required quorum isn’t reached, the stranded funds will be reimbursed to student accounts.
  • Attach UVSS budget transcripts to otp-in bimonthly emails – allowing for more accountability and less spam.

Affordability 

  • Support calls to link UVSS fees to inflation (maximum of 2% annually, as called for).
  • Without increasing fees, review the budget and reallocate funds towards subsidizing goods in the SUB, or at least minimizing any price increases.
  • Push for wider use of open-source textbooks

Not one of last year’s referendums passed, and given how important I view increasing affordability and resolving long-held negative sentiment of the position, I feel strong measures are paramount. Because of this, I will use special resolutions to table popular referendum questions, as well as transparency reforms, that fail to meet quorum.

Liam Peta

Hello UVIC! My name is Liam Peta. My objective is to diligently represent the undergraduate students at our university. I am currently a 3rd year Economics major. In past years, while attending high school and university, I have gained a variety of valuable work and volunteer experience in various public sectors; including two public hospitals, an elementary school and a local legislative electoral office. 

While our university is already pretty awesome, we can always do more as individuals and as a collective union, to achieve an extraordinary learning experience for everyone. 

Elected by the students, for the students, as your representative in the student union. I will always put your interests first. My initial goals are to:

1. Support and strengthen mental health and well being resources on campus. 

I recognize that mental health is on the decline; both in our school and in our community. It has largely been worsened by both the pandemic and climate change. I will strongly advocate for the maintenance and expansion of existing campus programs and initiatives. 

2. Encourage and foster further campus infrastructure.

A main concern for all of us is the troubling issue of affordability. Prices are rising but our pay cheques are not. I will encourage construction and development on campus that yields greater student satisfaction and affordability. 

3. Affirm my commitment to a greener UVIC.

The effects of climate change  worsen every year from the willful ignorance of federal and provincial politicians, but our campus does not have to be that way! I will welcome, and advocate for green campus sustainability efforts.

I will always remain open to ideas proposed by students. Together, we live in a changing and dynamic world, it is important that all voices are heard.

Outreach & University Relations

Ton Tran

Hi UVic! My name is Ton, and I am very excited to run for the UVSS board this semester. I am currently in my first year studying Elementary School Education with an Indigenous Studies minor. I was born in Northern BC on the unceded territories of the Wet’suwet’en Peoples. Spending my first few months in residence has allowed me to engage with outstanding people, clubs, campus events, and ultimately life-changing adventures. UVIC will forever hold memories that I will never forget.

I live by the idea to “seek discomfort.” Whether that was doing a public photo shoot or getting to know strangers for the vibes, it has helped me continuously improve and evolve as a person. Some of my most outstanding achievements include working on projects such as a podcast, creating a non-profit organization, and Youtube channels. Through small consistent actions and my passion for creating positive stories, I have strived to make impactful changes in myself and my community. 

Student Relationships 

  • Mandate more transparency within budgets, policies, organization affairs 
  • Communicate with students regularly to ensure their voice within UVSS operations and policymaking
  • Create more engaging on and off-campus collaborations and events
  • Advocate for a hybrid learning style

Sustainability and Equity

  • Creating a more environmentally focused campus food system, such as lowering food waste/packaging and increasing reusability
  • Consult and support advocacy groups 
  • Decrease issues related to sexualized violence

Finance and Affordability

  • Advocate for cheaper housing and availability for students (Better university assisted programs/services)
  • Provide easier ways to access/find scholarships/funds both from the University and other organizations/donors 

At first, running for the UVSS was a joke between my friends, but the more we talked, interest built. I hope for this to be a fantastic learning opportunity and challenge. Thank you to everyone that makes UVic such a wonderful place.

Evalyn Braybrook

Hi! My name is Evalyn Braybrook.  I’m a student administrator (and frequent dancer) for the UVic Cuban Salsa club, I am a founding member of the Humanities Undergraduate Society (HUGS), and I am a founding administrator of the UVic Discord Server Repository. I am also known for the presence of my cat during the most recent UVSS SAGM as a stress relief to those in attendance. His name is Walter and if I could nominate cats as UVSS directors, I would elect him.

There is definitely a lack of communication between UVic, the UVSS, and students. Not to mention the constant strain on the Board of Directors as they come and go in a revolving door. 

As your outreach representative, I will:

  • Increase participation with first year students to help solidify a future for the UVSS,
  • Work to align the UVSS’s actions with what students actually want,
  • Work and consult with student representatives and organizations across campus such as UVSS advocacy groups and student Senate representatives,
  • Push for a student makerspace and proper instruction in those spaces, and
  • Provide a cat cam at all major UVSS meetings where possible to provide stress relief and remind everyone that my cat is cute.

Let’s put the pieces of the UVSS back together again!

Student Affairs

Lilly Riley

My name is Lilly Riley, and I am in my third year at Uvic pursuing a major in psychology and a minor in political science. I want to run for Director of Student Affairs for the UVSS because I want to improve the clubs at Uvic, and help to encourage more students to join current clubs or create new ones. Ensuring safe environments for every individual is one of my main goals for my campaign, especially this year as there has been quite a bit of hate speech directed towards the trans community of Uvic. My next major goal for this campaign is looking towards more advertisements for clubs, as Covid-19 has impacted their engagement. Students did not have the ability to experience any clubs in the ways these clubs should be experienced, and now that we are back in person, this is the time to encourage new students or current students to join these clubs. I want to help recover and expand these clubs and listen to what the students want. Without these changes, many clubs will not be able to continue forward.

Deborah Berman

Hey UVic! My name is Deborah Berman (she/her), I’m a fourth-year Environmental Studies and Political Science student, and I’m running to be your next Director of Student Affairs! I was born and raised on the unceded territory of the Kwikwetlem and Coast Salish peoples. This past year I have been lucky to sit on the Board of Directors as one of your Directors at Large! I also currently sit on the Senate Committee on Admission, Re-registration, and Transfer Appeals and the Senate Committee on Academic Standards as the UVSS representative. Through these roles, I’ve advocated for equitable and accessible housing and worked to achieve increased outreach with students. I am passionate about the student experience and ensuring that all students feel safe and heard both on and off-campus. I am a reliable person, I intend to bring my consistent and strong work ethic to my work as the Director of Student Affairs at all times. 

If elected, my priorities are:

  • Anti-oppression, decolonization, and meaningful inclusivity will guide all work.
  • Support course unions, professional development unions, and clubs with quick and transparent communication to support wider student involvement. 
  • Prioritize student affordability by strengthening the Food Bank and Free Store, the Peer Support Centre, and lowering barriers to scholarships and bursaries.
  • Holding the university accountable to improve access to mental health resources, quality in hybrid education, and communication with students.
  • Work closely with SSD in fighting for accessible, safe education for all. 
  • Support SOCC and NSU in providing culturally competent mental health workshops.

My main goal is to make the UVSS board more accessible and communicative to the student body. 

Your student society should represent YOU! 

On March 23-25 vote Deborah Berman to be your next Director of Student Affairs!

Events

International Student Relations

Amber Powell

Hi there, my name is Amber Powell, and I’m a 3rd year biology student. We’ve all missed the events over the pandemic, and now as things begin to open up, you’ll want someone proactive with event planning. I want to see:

  • The creation of murals and communal art where anyone may participate, just for the fun of it.
  • Haunted houses, and other fun events, that still keep safety and sanitation in mind. 
  • More late night movie and food events on campus, especially around finals. Let’s make our school a community.

As Director of Events I would like to take over student orientation. This would allow new students to get acquainted with the student board, and encourage students to participate in school politics for their own benefit. I would support efforts to overhaul the UVSS, this includes board reform, as it is sorely needed to create transparency between students and our schools leadership. Lastly, I would vouch for consistent and quality online class availability across all programs. 

Adam Choi

I was a roommate with an exchange student last term, hosted a few events for her and her friends and enjoyed the experience. If elected I will be donating the salary from the position towards hosting events for international students.

Directors-At-Large

Sarah Buchanan

My name is Sarah! I’m in my second year as an undergraduate, and I’m pursuing a degree in sociology.

As a director-at-large, I will be a voice for positive change within the university. Though there are issues within our university, our campus is full of amazing people tackling them, and I would like to add my voice to that crowd.

As director-at-large, I want to battle issues close to myself and our student body. These include:

The increasing incidences of transphobia on campus

I hope that my position on the uvss board of directors will allow me to better organize broad shows of support for transgender students among our student body. Hate has no place on campus!

The sustainable operation of our university

The past two years have seen success with sustainability initiatives. However, we still have a ways to go. Uvic has divested part of its fossil fuel investment, now it’s time to go all the way!

The student housing crisis

Though a director-at-large position gives little power to create immediate change, I will use this position to make connections and advocate for policies at the municipal level, such as opening Oak Bay to student rentals.

Shelby Cain

I’m running on a platform of Accessibility, Affordability, and Accountability. I want to help create a campus that is accessible to all, make university more affordable for everyone, and hold myself and the UVSS accountable to all undergraduate students.

Venya Chhabra

Hello! My name is Venya Chhabra and I’m a second-year psychology student here at UVic. I’m currently an engage leader and throughout my experience, I’ve seen students struggling with post-Covid life. Many students are finding it extremely hard to make friends, have a sense of belonging, connect with others and just enjoy university life in general because of how things have changed drastically in the past two years. And if anything, I know from personal experience that when you don’t feel belonged somewhere you dreamt about going, it can be extremely disheartening. And all of these challenges can lead to very bad mental health for which the university provides support but is not accessible enough. As a Director-at-Large, I would aim at getting some of the same sense of fun and belonging to campus that was before Covid but with respect to the new normal. In addition to that, making mental health resources more accessible and easily available would also be my top priority because nobody should have to go through any life challenges alone. Life can be very challenging sometimes which is why we need to stick together to make it a little easier and meaningful for each other.

Lillian Crowder

Greetings, my name is Lillian Crowder, I am a 1st year Business Student, and I am hoping to join the UVSS board as a Director at Large. As a prospective representative my goals are to be a listener and voice to evoke positive change in the UVIC community. 

Previous work as a board member and as a volunteer for several community initiatives has given me valuable insight regarding the way the UVSS chooses to make decisions, and how they interact with the student community. With active communication, leadership, and organization skills, I hope to advocate successfully towards growth and change here at UVIC.

My platform goals represent who I am as a person. I value equity and social responsibility, as well as creating a welcoming environment here at UVIC. The following five goals are what I will strive to represent if elected as a member of the UVSS board.

1. Expanding social support following the Covid-19 pandemic.

2. Taking an intersectional approach to equality/equity barriers.

3. Expanding physical and mental health support services on campus.

4. Creating safe and accessible places for ALL individuals, such as genderless bathrooms.

5. Expanding resources to promote healthy relationships and sex.

Natasha Dielmann

Hello UVic Students. My name is Natasha Dielmann. I am currently a second-year student majoring in Earth and Ocean Sciences + Physical Geography, and I am excited to be running for a Director at Large position. 

Having been on my high schools’ student council for 2 years, I know how much impact can be made when we voice our concerns and are dedicated to making a difference. I am passionate about improving our ongoing sustainability projects to better address concerns brought up by the pandemic. Covid has given everyone more challenges than expected but I believe through communication and cooperation we can face these sustainability challenges. I look forward to a future where it is easy to be sustainable and making positive choices becomes second nature. A future like that requires effort, planning, and involvement from everyone at UVic. In the future, I want to push for more involvement-based projects so everyone can feel included and know that their voices and actions work to make a difference.

If elected, I hope to convey students’ concerns, as well as their ideas of how to solve them, to the Students’ society, then work to apply them in creating new initiatives. 

Julien Edwardson

My name is Julien Edwardson. As a first-year engineering student at UVic, I have experienced the feeling that many of us share: disappointment and frustration with our student governance. We have witnessed the aimless UVSS work against the interests of students, weaponize bureaucracy for political purposes, and decrease transparency regarding the UVSS’s dealings. If elected, I will accomplish the following:

• Implement student motions passed at previous and future AGMs and SAGMs

• Ensure all actions taken by the UVSS board are fully public, clear, and transparent

• Stop UVSS social media accounts from campaigning against student petitions and motions

• Reduce the frequency of “in-camera” (private closed-door) meetings

• Create better auditing processes for all UVSS organizations to eliminate money waste

• Push for action on funding open access (free) textbooks and software to reduce the costs of being a student

• Campaign for banning course access codes and attendance apps such as i-clicker

• Campaign for municipalities to approve more affordable and student-oriented housing projects

With this election, we can put our foot down and overhaul our student government. The UVSS can once again become transparent, effective, and student oriented, as it was originally meant to be.

Discord: BeretGuy#9081
Reddit: u/BeretGuy_

Finn Fairbairn

My main focus is getting police off-campus and stopping the harassment many students face from Police and Campus Security patrols. Police have no place on campus, and while Campus Security is necessary in some cases, they should not be getting involved in policing parties; rather, they should be on campus to keep the student population safe.

Dante Fisher

My name is Dante, I’m from Victoria and I’m currently a first year science student. I’m seeking your help for election as a Director at Large so I can voice my opinions and those of my peers around me.

Sam Holland

Hi, my name is Samuel Holland. I’m the founder of the UVic Discord Repository, a university Senator, and a founding member of the Humanities Undergraduate Society (HUGS). You also might have seen me organizing (and dancing with) the UVic Cuban Salsa Club! I’m a History and Environmental Studies student running to bring change to the UVSS. 

The last few years has shown how broken our union is: four major resignations in three months, attempts to lower thresholds for unpopular referenda items, and a complete breakdown in UVSS communications. We demand reform.

On the Board, I will be a steady voice for accountability, consultation, and change. I will:

• Work to change the structure of the board to make it accessible to students,

• Push to give students choice on new governing structures,

• Demand an inclusive and green campus recovery,

• Ensure that students can vote on the creation of a Makerspace,

• Connect with groups across campus such as advocacy groups, course unions, and the Senate student caucus to make sure they are getting the support they need,

Make sure all appropriate consultation takes place.

Let’s fix our union, together!

Alyssa Jackson

Hi! My name is Alyssa Jackson and I’m running to be a Director-at-Large on the UVSS board. I’m in my fourth year at UVic working towards a major in political science and a minor in professional writing. I’m an international student from Camas, Washington. In my studies, I focus on how equity, diversity and inclusion can be made attainable for everyone. These values will guide my work and goals with the UVSS. I will help make students feel welcome, know where to find support, and look forward to coming to school.

My priorities are to center student wellness and safety. I will focus on empowering marginalized voices on campus. For one, transphobia on campus must be stopped. The recent hateful graffiti found on campus is unacceptable. I want to empower gender diversity by starting an anti-transphobia campaign. Second, accessible learning options need to be available for all students. I want the UVSS to provide increased funding to the SSD’s #AccessForAll campaign. Third, I will support Indigenous voices and self-determination in my work with the UVSS. Overall, as a DaL, I hope to ensure that all students feel heard and welcome.

On March 23-25, vote Alyssa for Director-at-Large!

Tom Kerr

As a director at large, I would focus on student engagement with the UVSS. Additionally, I would bring accountability to the lead directors, specifically with regard to finances including the VIPIRG funds and student-led motions such as the one to mandate a faculty-balanced UVSS board. Finally, I would help support lead directors to reduce the current turnover-rate. Thanks for your support!

Kate Laureta

Hello UVic! My name is Kate Laureta and I am running as your Director at Large. 

I am a third-year Psychology major and I have a degree in Criminal Justice. I am passionate about uplifting the voices of every UVic student and working on projects that will benefit our entire community. 

If elected, I will strive to push for:

Access 4 All

Urging professors to use a hybrid teaching method in order to make all classes accessible for those unable to attend in person learning 

More gender neutral washrooms on campus

One multi-stall per building in order to validate and make washrooms accessible for all students regardless of the gender binary

International student representation

Campus events designed to educate about and celebrate a myriad of diverse cultures

Mental health resources

Providing external resources for all students  

Student housing rights

Affordable, guaranteed housing

Accessible transit to ferries

Student ferry shuttles on a set and semi-frequent schedule, i.e. once or twice a month along with holidays 

Inclusive and fun campus events

More events during the school year

Elect me as your Director at Large so we can work together to improve and empower our campus community.

Harrison Mundschutz

My name is Harrison Mundschutz, and I have been studying chemistry at UVic for four years now. The past year has exposed some deep flaws in the UVSS which left the organization dead in the water. I believe this is the result of three main issues: apathy, inefficiency, and indirection. As Director at Large, I will work tirelessly to help overhaul the UVSS, making it more accessible to students. I will streamline the administration to bring sanity and effective governance. To improve student participation, I will work to keep the UVSS on target for its primary function, to collectively bargain for better student conditions. Becoming a functional student union will give students reason to be interested, and I will support the introduction of faculty directorships for better representation for the entire campus, as well as work closely with the outreach and events directors to improve our transparency, ensuring we will no longer have to bribe students for participation. A vote for me is a vote for efficiency, transparency, responsibility, and a UVSS that works for you.

Jordana Pangburn

Hey!! My name is Jordana Pangburn, (she/her), and I am a first-year Humanities student. I have an extensive history of advocacy-based volunteering and a passion for 2SLGBTQIA+, Indigenous, and environmental issues. However, my top priority is to fulfill student needs that aren’t being met and increase affordability. I believe that an effective team consists of members with a variety of strengths and focuses: I would concentrate on providing student necessities and decreasing financial barriers, but let my background in climate and social justice inform my work and achieve equity. Students deserve more from the UVSS.

If given the opportunity to serve the UVIC student body, I will fight for:

Student Needs

• Increased counselling services and more counsellors

• Accessible learning, i.e., requiring recorded lectures that can be watched online

• Adding coverings for all existing smoke benches to provide shelter from the weather

Affordability

• Cheaper campus food options/cheaper residence meal plans

• Free, online textbooks

• Reduced housing costs for students on-campus and off-campus

Vote Jordana Pangburn on March 23-25th, for a Director at Large that will advocate for students. I am excited for this campaign and hope I get to represent you!

Lily Vokey

Hello! My name is Lily Vokey, and I am a 4th-year Psychology and Political Science student here at UVic. As a former Engage Leader and an Engagement Programming Coach here at Uvic, I understand the impact that a sense of community has on an individual. 

As students, Uvic is where we spend most of our time, and as everyone has learnt through the pandemic, a sense of belonging is what keeps us happy, healthy and fulfilled. Therefore, fostering an inclusive environment should be held at the utmost importance here at Uvic, and to me, that means coming to terms with the changes that need to be made to improve campus wellbeing. Like too many of you, I have witnessed the lack of accessible mental health support and the challenges that come with finding and accessing these resources. University life certainly has its challenges, but getting access to wellness resources should not be one of them. 

As your director at large, my primary objective surrounds sourcing and promoting wellness initiatives on campus- from social events to mental health care. Let’s work together to make UVic a home for all its students.

Sarah Wald

My main priority is to help create a stable and sustainable Board of Directors that is accessible and accountable to the student body. As it stands, Lead Directors are overburdened and under-compensated for their work, which makes it difficult to acquire and retain Lead Directors. Actively working with the student body to restructure the Board of Directors will better facilitate a sustainable and stable BoD, while ensuring that changes are made to reflect the current needs of the students. Reforming the BoD’s structure will also increase accessibility for students who may not have the resources required to take on a Lead Director position which demands substantial over-time work. These changes will directly benefit low-income students, students with disabilities, and students with dependents and will provide an opportunity to better represent vulnerable students from these demographics.

My additional areas of focus include improving students’ access to health, dental, and vision coverage as well as better access to meaningful mental health resources. Alongside this, it is essential to recognize that access to affordable housing, reliable transportation, and hybrid learning options substantially contribute to the mental well-being of students.

Debrah Wyatt

If elected, I vow to tackle the student debt crisis and lower the cost of living for students. This means reducing the cost of books, on campus meals, and UVSS fees.