Candidate Information 2017-2018

Position

Candidate

Candidate’s Statement

President

Adam Grotsky
Adam Grotsky Headshot

My name is Adam Grotsky and I’m running to be your SGPS President. I hail from Vaughan, Ontario, but I’ve been proud to call Kingston my home since 2011. I completed by BAH in Political Studies here at Queen’s, and loved the campus and its people so much that I returned this year to study Law.
During my undergrad, I had the privilege of serving as the President of the Arts and Science Undergraduate Society (ASUS) in 2014-15. In this role, I was a strong voice for the 10,000 students I represented. One of the highlights of my term was successfully advocating for the creation of the Arts and Science Internship Program, now an invaluable opportunity for students to gain practical skills in a real-life work environment.
This is my sixth year at Queen’s, and one thing I’ve learned is that our community works best when it works together and when it works for everyone. That’s why as your SGPS President, I will seek to better your experience through three core pillars: 1) improving wellness and access, 2) strengthening our community, and 3) enhancing career support. This includes increasing financial aid, expanding experiential learning opportunities, and firmly representing your interests to the university administration.
To sum it up, I am committed to being With You, For You. That’s why on February 16th and 17th, I ask you to vote for Adam Grotsky to be your SGPS President.
For more information about my campaign and what I pledge to do for you, please check out “Vote Adam Grotsky for SGPS President” on Facebook.

Vice President Campaigns and Community Affairs

Tyler Morrison
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My name is Tyler and I’m running to be your VP Campaigns and Community Affairs. I studied Philosophy at Wilfred Laurier for my undergrad, and now I’m proud to be a first year law student here at Queen’s. While I’ve only been on campus for a semester, I’ve already come to admire the Queen’s and Kingston community.
At Laurier I had the opportunity to represent the Philosophy department for the Faculty of Arts Board. It was in this role that I polished my communication and advocacy skills as a representative for the philosophy student body.
As VP of Campaigns and Community Affairs, I will be a strong voice for the members of the SGPS. I look forward to working with external organizations to continue the strong, diverse, and inclusive community at Queen’s. I will be a strong advocate to external bodies for the needs of students, including their health and wellness, academic success, and career prospects. I would also like to continue the efforts of this year’s executive in creating a series of career-focused workshops for members of the SGPS, and to help create more resources for students looking to translate their academic success into a career.
That’s why, on February 16th and 17th, I ask you to vote Tyler Morrison for VP Campaigns and Community Affairs.

Vice-President Finance and Services

Lauren Peacock
LPVPFSCan

Who am I and why do I want to be VP Finance?
How our student fees are spent matters to me! Like many of my fellow students, I’m paying my way through law school and I want to ensure that student fees are spent on items that􀁍 decide are beneficial.
I graduated in 2016 with an Honours B. Comm from McMaster University before coming to
Queen’s for law. Prior to this, I held many positions relating to finances and money. I interned for 12- months as a hedge fund accountant and part of this role involved an extensive background check,
including credit history, as I had access to six-figure bank accounts. Most recently, I worked for a
municipality in the finance department where we ran many cash-based social events. I was responsible for the first-count following these events which included cash amounts of up to $25,000.
What do I want to accomplish as VP Finance?
Financial Responsibility: Through my previous experiences, I learned how important it is to have safe­guards to prevent misuse of funds and I will implement similar measures to ensure SGPS funds are
properly disbursed and accounted for. My goal is to ensure funds are being spent responsibly and that any unnecessary budget items are reallocated to programs and items that are useful to students.
Increased Accessibility for Grants and Bursaries: Had an expensive dental procedure that wasn’t fully covered by the dental plan? There’s a bursary for that! Tapped out of your OSAP and your laptop just broke? There’s a bursary for that too! A lot of students are unaware of the grants and bursaries the
SGPS offers and my goal is to have these grants and bursaries become common knowledge, to make the requirements clear and to simplify the application process.
Visit facebook.com/votelaurenpeacock for more information! >

Vice-President Graduate

Stéphanie (Stéfy) McKnight
SMVPGCan

My name is Stéfy McKnight and I am a first year doctoral student in Cultural Studies and I am running as your Vice-President Graduate. I’ve been a member of the Society of Graduate and Professional Studies for three years, since pursuing my Master’s in Cultural Studies at Queen’s University. I am running because I am passionate about creating and maintaining positive and amicable relationships with Queen’s administration, campus groups and organizations, graduate student resources and the graduate student community. In short, I believe there are aspects of graduate and student life that can be further developed and negotiations that should be maintained.
What I want to do for you:
1. Conference and Travel Funding and Bursaries
2. Project and Research Material Funding and Bursaries
3. International Student Support for Grant and Scholarship Writing
4. Discuss PhD time of completion and its impact of graduate mental health and productivity
5. Offer environmentally friendly food options on campus, such as local, non-GMO, vegan, vegetarian, to continue Queen’s push for environmental sustainability.
This platform outlines some of the projects I am eager to pursue if elected Vice-President Graduate. My experience in negotiating with administration and committees will ensure that you have a representative and ally who is advocating for you. Please do not hesitate to contact me with questions and concerns at stefy.mcknight@queensu.ca. I am here for you.
Qualifications:
2016 –Present: President of Board of Directors, Modern Fuel Artist Run Centre
2016 –Present: Unit 1 Bargaining Committee, PSAC Local 901
2016 –Present: Co-Founder and Curator of ‘Potpourri: a collegiate exhibition’, Mac-Corry, Room B176
2015 –Present: Member of Staff Management and Hiring Committee, PSAC Local 901
2015 –Present: Member, Steering Committee, Cultural Studies Program
2014 –Present: Information Officer, PSAC Local 901
2014 –Present: Chair of Bylaws Committee, PSAC Local 90

Vice-President Professional

Russell Durward
RDVPPCan

I’ll be brief, my relevant experiences for this position are my previous roles in student politics. In undergrad, I was part of the Classics Student Council at University of Toronto, in its 2nd and 3rd year of existence. This year, I am the Secretary-Treasurer for the ll Council at the law Department. These two positions have given me valuable experiences and ideas of what to do in terms of student politics. I pride myself in both of these positions to listen to the people and what they want and do everything I can to fulfill those wants.
From my time in both the Queen’s Law council and student body, I have come to realize that often the professional students keep to themselves, insulating themselves from the rest of the school. I would make it one of my main missions as VP Professional to bring the professional students out of this insulation. r wish to introduce them to the world outside of their faculty, and the beauties that are out there. I want to bring the various student bodies together, with each other and others.
I understand that for most (if not all) professional students, school is all about finding
that perfect job that we have put blood, sweat and tears into. I want to make sure that we
haven’t lost that fun that we had in undergrad. I plan on finding ways to keep the programs fun for the professional students, while still promoting the professional aspects that the students strive for in terms of job prospects. I want to bring a balance between work and play.

Graduate Student Senator

Alexandru Sonoc
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I am a PhD student in Mechanical Engineering with a passion for education and research who is eager to serve the Queen’s graduate community. I possess several years of board and committee experience at various levels (senate committee on academic development, union executive, student government, financial director, etc.) that I am excited to put to good use.
I care most about improving the Queen’s experience of those I will represent and to that end, I will follow through on my promises, be thorough in my analysis of issues, and uphold the values of diversity when representing you.
As your Graduate Senator, I would:
1. Advocate for the construction and funding of collaborative facilities where students can do assisted preliminary experiments prior to conducting full ones in their supervisor’s laboratory;
2. Seek to ensure graduate students are aware of desired learning outcomes, deliverables, syllabuses, and other course materials before the start of term;
3. Advocate for the right of students to have a full academic year to complete all course requirements, and this without special permission of the instructor; and
4. Seek to improve the overall quality of education by advocating for innovative grading methods, technology, and alternative teaching methods to make marking easier and faster so that fewer TA/TF resources are diverted away from teaching/one-on-one help to marking duties.
To learn more about my platform, please visit: https://www.facebook.com/events/141206503054834/