Thursday, June 13, 2024
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VP Internal candidates

Interviews by Rebbeca Hsu

 

Chris Connors, 24, Third-year management

Hometown: Greenwood, N.S.

Who do you aspire to be: The Mayor of Halifax. I have spent much of my life in or around this beautiful city. I love this city.

Three words to best describe yourself: Level-headed, easy-going, insightful

Past experience:  Member at Large for the Board of Operations

 

Connors describes himself as a candidate who has been involved just enough with DSU to be familiar with its processes, but could still introduce new ideas to the Vice-president (internal) position.

He is currently a member at large for the DSU Board of Operations, stating that this position has offered him an inside look on what the VP-I and the DSU do.

Connors believes that his experiences have helped him develop a “realistic view on the limitations that the VP-I has” but insists that he is “far enough removed from the DSU insider crowd” to bring a fresh perspective to the position.

This blend of experience and separation with the DSU is what Connors believes makes him unique for the job. When asked what might help him in succeeding, he puts great emphasis on the support staff.

“Holly, the society coordinator, and Craig the general manager (for example). (They) have seen many VP-Is come and go. They know what works and what doesn’t.”

Connors is aiming for stronger student engagement, and seeks to do so through recruiting more volunteers for committees and initiatives like the food bank.

 

 

Kayla Kurin, 21, Fifth-year psychology and classics

Hometown: Richmond Hill/Thornhill, Ont.

Who do you aspire to be: A Lord of the Rings Hobbit. They know how to work as a team, plus they share my deep love of food!

Three words to describe yourself: Friendly. Analytical. Wacky.

Past experience: Vice-president (internal), Vice President of the Arts and Social Sciences Society, Marketing Czar of the undergraduate classics society, Dalhousie-Kings Film Collective, Students for Peace in the Middle East, DSU council.

 

Kurin is no stranger to the DSU. As incumbent Vice-president (internal), Kurin names experience as her point of distinction from other VP-I candidates, stating that she is already familiar with the position, and is best prepared for challenges to come.

While experience is something she does not lack, Kurin notes that her values and ideas of leadership have evolved during her term as VP-I.

“Coming into this position I thought that it was my job to make decisions, and get things done. However, after having worked with a number of amazing people this year from a variety of different committees and student groups I have realized that the most valuable thing to the VP-I portfolio is being able to collaborate on projects and being open to new ideas.”

Kurin does not stake a claim to any complex ideas, when asked about her plans if she is elected for another term as VP-I.

She is aiming to focus more on collaborating with societies through actively seeking feedback from students.

Kurin insists that her ideas are simple – “My plans themselves are not big or ‘sexy’, a lot of my ideas are very simple, but I think that the impact they will have will be very sexy.”

Indeed, when asked what might make her term a successful one if she is re-elected, she simply states, “excited students!”

 

 

Imad Mekhail, 22, Fifth-year neuroscience and business

Hometown: Halifax, N.S.

Who do you aspire to be: Politically: Bill Clinton. Someone closer to home would be my dad.

Three words to describe yourself: Committed, knowledgable, and a bit of a rambler.

Past experience: Dalhousie Science Society councillor, Open House leader, Dalhousie Science Society President, a dozen or so committees, including the Constitution Committee.

 

Mekhail believes that his past experience at the grassroots level is what sets him apart from the other Vice-president (internal) candidates.

Mekhail admits that he has not worked extensively with the DSU executives, and has “tried to stay mostly with the general student population and people ‘at our level.’”

He believes that this will allow him to offer fresh ideas to the position.

If elected, Mekhail has plans to work on introducing first-year students to university leadership positions.

He also seeks to press for the rights of societies, stating examples like offering societies the choice to select their own food providers.

The word “prioritize” comes up multiple times; Mekhail indicates that he has a set list of priorities that would allow him to succeed.

When asked what might hinder his work as VP-I, Mekhail states, “the steep learning curve at the beginning.”

“It takes time for committee chairs to fill up, but I plan to start working on my priority list immediately.”

When asked what values he adheres to that would help him with the job, Mekhail insists that he “doesn’t want to turn into a list of buzzwords.”

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