If you’re an undergraduate student here at Brock, you’ll probably notice an email from BUSU shortly after midnight tonight from BUSU asking you to vote in the BUSAC By-Election & Fed Up: The Affordable Food Project Referendum. If you’re out of the loop when it comes to campus politics, here’s a brief run down of everything you need to know.
1. What is BUSAC?
BUSAC or Brock University Students’ Administrative Council is the arm of BUSU that ensures that student voices are properly represented when BUSU has to make decisions on issues that affect students at Brock. To make a comparison, BUSAC is similar to Members of Parliament in the House of Commons. Every March students vote for representatives from their faculty to make the decisions at the administrative level for them. Like parliament, each faculty has a different amount of representatives according to how many students are in their faculty compared to the overall population of the undergraduates at Brock. Once elected to BUSAC, councilors sit on committees, such as: Clubs Policy Committee, Elections & Referendum Committee, Environment Committee, and External Affairs committee…to name a few. These committees meet throughout the school year to fulfill their mandates and report back to BUSAC on the work they have done. Some items BUSAC is responsible for approving include large club funding requests, capital purchases and bylaw changes. It is then up to the entirety of BUSAC to approve (or not approve) what is on the table.
2. Why is it important for students?
BUSAC is extremely important for students who want to make a change on campus. Some projects that have gone through BUSAC are: The Turf Field Project, The Student Life Fee (free gym memberships, free admission to all Brock home games, and funding Student Health Services), Universal Bus Pass, & The Health and Dental Plan. Each of these initiatives have greatly improved student life here at Brock, and at one point they had to be approved by BUSAC.
3. How can students get involved
Students have three main ways to get involved. First being, show up to the meetings! BUSAC meets in Sankey Chambers every second Wednesday at 7pm, the public is always welcome to come and ask questions during our open question period or during the meeting. Brock TV also live streams each meeting if you can’t make the meeting in person. Secondly, we strongly encourage students to run and represent their faculties. This is the best way to represent how you and your peers feel about issue on campus. Elections for BUSAC are every March and are open all undergraduate students. And lastly, be a Student-at-large (SAL). SAL’s are un-elected positions within the BUSAC committees that help ensure that all the student voices are being represented when forming opinions to present to BUSAC, students can apply to be a SAL on the BUSU website anytime throughout the year.
4. What is happening tomorrow?
For the October by-elections students in the Goodman and Math & Science faculties will be voting for their BUSAC representatives. Also, ALL students are encouraged to vote in the Fed-Up: The Affordable Food Project Referendum. In 2014, students voted to support a mandatory $2.80 per credit fee to fund ‘Fed-Up: The Affordable Food Project’. Fed-Up’s main initiatives included providing healthy and affordable food on campus and ensuring that dietary and religious restrictions were properly represented on campus.
5. How will the referendum affect students
By voting Yes, you are voting to remove the $2.80 per credit Fed Up fee. By voting No, you are voting to keep the current fee as it is. If you want to learn more, please click here to view the information campaign.
That’s all for today – thanks for getting informed Badgers!