Editor’s note: Similar questionnaires have been sent out to all DSU position candidates.
Position: Vice-President (Finance and Operations)
Candidate: Isa Wright (incumbent)
Why are you re-running for VPFO?
I came into this position with the mindset that budgets are all about priorities and this is something I still believe. We truly can only create change and better serve students if our budget is reflective of our values. I’m passionate about making student life better in all aspects, and have loved making a difference for students this year. I have increased the amount of funding available for all bursary programs, introduced new emergency bursaries and changed the time it takes to receive funding from a three month wait period to a three week wait period. I have done a lot to improve the finances of the DSU and would love another year to continue this work. I will continue to ensure that the values and needs of our student body are reflected in our budget and that we have the funding we need in order to continue to improve our campuses.
Why do you think you’re running uncontested for this position?
I think the Finance and Operations position is a bit intimidating, and that’s probably why. But for now, I’ll just assume that people want me to keep going!
How is this affecting your campaign?
I honestly don’t really think it has. I’m still really passionate about this position and am trying to reach as many students as possible to let them know what I’m all about! It does mean that most of my campaign work has just focused on creating genuine connections with students so that I can hear their priorities and the issues they care about, which has definitely been enjoyable and a bit less stressful than last year!
What do you admire about the current DSU executives?
I really admire Ruby [Coles], our current VPSL, because in a lot of ways she’s been an unsung hero of the DSU this year. She’s made so many new initiatives for mental health this year, and most of them have been overshadowed by all of the drama from the year! I know a lot of our members really appreciate the hard work that she’s put in, actually listening to students and working with pretty much every area of health services at Dal in order to improve our services and connect students with them. It’s been so amazing to watch, and I know that she’s made a huge difference to a lot of students!
What would you like to see DSU do differently?
I’d like to say that I’ve made a difference this year to our audit and grant processes, but there are still so many aspects to ratification, grants, and audits that need to be improved. Our timelines are definitely quicker overall than they were last year, but I know that societies need us to do better to support them! I look forward to working with the next VP Internal to improve the ratification process so that societies can get funding quicker, and to make the treasurer training a bit more robust so that more society treasurers pass their audits the first time around.
What do you think is the biggest issue on campus right now?
Climate justice seems to be on everyone’s minds right now, which is really awesome to see. The climate crisis is definitively less awesome, but I think the huge numbers of youth mobilizing around climate action is really inspiring. I have loved working with the DSU this year to support various climate initiatives and funding more to take place this upcoming year, and this is definitely part of my campaign. Most of my campaign has just focused on talking to students about the issues they’re passionate about, so I’d definitely say it’s one of my main platform points!
What’s your favourite spot on campus?
I’m a bit obsessed with coffee and need lots of it to make it through each day of work and classes, so I’d have to say Pete’s in the SUB! The baristas are so friendly and they have the best coffee on campus, hands down.