Rebecca Jansen (Kinesiology president candidate)

Rebecca Jansen - kinesiology president candidate

Rebecca Jansen.

What is your current year and program? 

I am currently in third-year kinesiology.

What is your favourite campus eatery? 

My favourite campus eatery is The Spoke! 

Why are you running for this position? 

I hope to be your next Kinesiology Students’ Association President because I believe I can use my knowledge from past leadership experiences to bring a new perspective to the School of Kinesiology and the KSA. This year, I was vice-president of academics, and I have enjoyed every moment of my role on KSA. This past year has only built my passion for this school and the kinesiology program. I am looking forward to being your new KSA President, and I will ensure that student voices are represented and any concerns you have regarding matters of student life are addressed. 

What do you see as the biggest challenge faced by students in your faculty?  

Although the School of Kinesiology does a tremendous job providing students with applicable skills and knowledge, I believe that there should be more opportunities for students to learn about different career paths after completing their kinesiology degree. I want to promote both tradition and atypical pathways students may be interested in taking after they graduate from Western. 

How do you hope to mitigate this? 

I plan on doing this by continuing to create an upper-year handbook, hosting information nights with experts in a variety of disciplines and by creating weekly Facebook posts about different occupations and post graduate programs within Canada and across the globe.

What are the three most important initiatives you hope to accomplish in your term? 

The three most important initiatives I will accomplish during my term are mental health and wellness, what to do after one graduates from kinesiology and increasing the involvement of kinesiology students. I am very passionate about mental health and wellness and believe that the KSA can be a leader in providing awareness events. I plan on implementing group fitness classes and other events to help destress during highly stressful times of the year. Many students struggle with post-graduation plans. I will create an accessible upper-year handbook entailing graduation fair dates, professor profiles and different post-graduation pathways for students. This would create interesting discussions surrounding atypical career paths. Finally, I will involve more students by hosting a meet-and-great with the KSA and involve the various mentors (i.e., sophs, LAMP, mentorship class) across campus to ensure maximum student involvement.

Why do you think you are best suited for this position? 

My experience as a participant in the KSA events and as both the KSA coordinator for last year’s Winter Special Games and as the current vice-president of academics, prepares me for this position. Last year, I chose to sit on the KSA Constitution Committee, which was a voluntary commitment to aid in the revision of our constitution. This, along with spearheading the insurance and finances for WSG, provided me with a unique insight into the operation of the KSA itself. This year, I sat on the Kinesiology Curriculum and Education Policy Committee, the Student Opportunity Fund Committee and the First Year Optimization Task Force. These have provided me insight into the faculty's beliefs and plans going forward, allowing me to be the voice of the kinesiology student body and sharing ideas and thoughts with the faculty and staff. I plan to continue to be the student voice on these committees and to continue my work in these sectors.  

Zain Al-Shamil (Health Sciences president candidate)

Zain Al-Shamil - health sciences president candidate

Zain Al-Shamil.

What is your current year and program? 

Second year, kinesiology.

What is your favourite campus eatery?

The Spoke jalapeno bagel with red pepper cream cheese? Yes please!

Why are you running for this position? 

am running for FHSSC president because after serving two years on council, one of which as a USC councillor, I gained an appreciation and a passion for advocating for my faculty, as well as students at large, and luckily I have had wonderful role models to help develop a strong voice to support my passions, and what better way to apply those lessons learned other than representing your faculty?  

What do you see as the biggest challenge faced by students in your faculty?  

Health Sci students face the same biggest challenge as all other students at this organization. Mental health challenges.

How do you hope to mitigate this? 

By building on current mental health initiatives, as well as working with my constituents to come up with new initiatives. Currently, there have been talks to change the way we view doctors' notes in order to defer exams or assignments and instead have a "freebie" system where students are able to fill out an online form and have assignments deferred with no questions asked if, for example, they need a mental health break day. Additionally, I plan having talks and integrating ideas by students for students in the new Thames Hall renovation which is taking place.

What are the three most important initiatives you hope to accomplish in your term? 

1. Improving the way Western approaches mental health. (As mentioned above.)

2. Change the way the faculty and institution approaches make-up midterms. Currently there is no policy which states that students who miss a midterm can write a make-up, this results in a heavily weighted final exam, which puts a huge load on students. I plan on having talks in order to create a policy which states that for all courses there needs to be a make-up midterm.  

3. Improve the quality of life for health science students. 

Changes like this can be small, but many small changes have a huge impact, things like making the Health Sciences Building more inclusive by having gender neutral bathrooms, more study spaces in the building, having an espresso/coffee machine added toHSB and more wellness events. These, as well as many more, are small changes which can have a big impact on the day-to-day comfort of students in my faculty. Additionally, I plan on making myself accessible to students so they can also provide more input on what they want to see change.  

Why do you think you are best suited for this position? 

Coming into this institution, I felt small, and I felt like I didn't have the strength to voice out my opinion on topics that mattered the most to me. It wasn't until I joined council that I was able to find my voice, and I began to realize that I do have the ability to bring on change. Currently, I am lucky enough to serve as a councillor, which not only helped me further develop my voice, but also gave me a chance to connect with wonderful people, which showed me what it takes to be an effective leader which can bring on change. I feel like I have developed an effective leadership style which will allow me to work harmoniously with my peers to not only improve Western's student experience, but also create an environment where my constituents are able to approach the faculty with their questions and concerns which then can be addressed.

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