AMS Report #8 (almost)

DATE: September 2

Hello young men and women of the commerce constituency. Let your AMS rep enlighten you for a while. So close that Accenture newsletter (yes, I am also on the e-mail list), stop complaining about Ivey and how many formidable people have been seduced by it, tell your mentor in consulting/investment banking/accounting that you’re sick and can’t make it to coffee, and take some time for yourself instead and read away:

The writing of this post was started literally twenty minutes after AMS council meeting ended. Why you may ask? Well, your AMS rep must commute one and a half hours to get to UBC from her “house” in Surrey, so naturally, she chooses to effectively use her time and do work.

HIGHLIGHTS:

a. Lack of speaker (no Dave=no technology=mass chaos). Luckily, Sauder Alumni and now turned law student, Colin Simkus, was able to be an amazing speaker, ruling with an iron fist. Way to go Colin!
b. The themes here were: TRUST, healthy minds, speaking lists
c. The food was sandwiches and prosciutto covered cantaloupe?

PRESENTATION TO COUNCIL:

Healthy Minds at UBC, presented by Vanita Sabharwal & Patty Hamble

Is that Corker with a free hugs poster!?! Awesome!

“For the past six years or so, Student Health Service and Counselling Services have been engaging the VP Students’ Portfolio staff and students in a discussion about the importance of promoting mental health and reducing stigma around mental illness.” SOURCE: Healthy minds Powerpoint

At last meeting, the Student Health Service and Counselling services presented their new initiatives to

A. Increase students’ capacity to maintain mental health through awareness.
B. Enable student engagement and academic success.
C. Promote a culture shift at UBC that favours personal wellness and balance of all community members.
D. Reduce the stigma of mental health concerns.

Few can doubt that academic achievement is significantly linked to mental health. All too often though, it is overlooked and ignored either because of the lack of knowledge surrounding the issue or simply because of the social stigma attached to being perceived as mentally unhealthy. I am glad that the university has acknowledged this issue and I’d be crazy not to be excited for the many events they have planned.

Interesting things here to note are the statistics used to determine reasons for “academic difficulties” (dropping a course, receiving an incomplete or low grade). Forty four percent of students asked mentioned stress as a factor, while an astounding 30.9% said non-academic use of the internet/games (woah! We are addicted to facebook! Maybe you SHOULD not be reading this!) Surprisingly, only 5.9% mentioned alcohol use a factor, which is lower than most universities.

And at this point, I read the new UBC Insiders blog posting and cried a little. It’s right here, so check it out: http://blogs.ubc.ca/ubcinsiders/2009/09/03/ams-council-sep-2-2009/#more-711 There you can find more information if you truly desire

UPDATES (in “three” words or less)

Blake: sick, speeches, GALA
Tom: $500,000, HR, LODGE
Tim: YVR Canada line extension, cuts, more cuts (U-pass costume)
Johannes: Staycation, chronophobia
Crystal: clubs days, SUB booth
Pavani: Promo materials

As part of Inter-faculty relations (woohoo!), I’d like to mention the various goings on of other faculties. In other words, there is going to be a lot of free food for the next two weeks so keep your eyes peeled:

ARTS:
Invitation to Sept.8th’s BBQ= B140= “MASS” FREE FOOD FREE FOOD
Sept.10 Campus kickoff club night
frAUSh is Sept.26th

LAW:
First week events: Chivana’s on 8th
Elizabeth May will coming to talk

SCIENCE:
Sept 9th Beer Garden @ Ladha

ENGINEERING:
Sept.16=water balloons

PHARMACY:
Welcome back BBQ: Sept 8

LIBRARY:
Potluck at the end of the week

REGENT:
Latin party?

Motion #1

Replace all plastic cutlery with compostable cutlery

FORKS FORKS FORKS. There were none at council. I ate cheesecake with my hands.
COST: $6075.11
BENEFIT: 260,000 plastic forks will not be going to the landfill
=WIN
Motion passed

Motion #2

Conflict of Interest
WHAT? Basically a motion prohibiting members that serve as “directors” of another entity where there is a conflict of interest to participate in in-camera sessions, whether that be on council or in committees.
WHY?To protect the AMS
WHO? Mostly it would be the Board of Governors representatives, but can also extend to the senate or other entities seeing that the wording is somewhat vague
Motion did not pass because:
a. Vague wording
b. Is there a true need, can’t we trust ourselves?
c. Negative action of excluding someone

“I think the better thing to do is to not trust anyone…” – Matt

Motion #3

Signing in and out
WHAT? Councillors would be required to sign in and out with the admin assistant to make sure no one is voting on their behalf once they leave
Motion was defeated because:
a. Is there a true need, can’t we just trust ourselves? (again)

“Motion to let Tim talk” – Tom

Motion #4

Funding Cuts Awareness Campaign
What is this? Councillors and other political individuals go and talk education, funding etc. in Victoria.
Why?There has been funding cuts to education (some say upwards to 86 million dollars in total). Students need to know this. Duh.
COST: $6825.00 from the External Lobbying fund. FUNDS AVAILABLE AT THAT POINT: $25,119
BENEFIT: Students will know about the cuts, cause a ruckus so students are heard, a nice campaign to go into lobby days
Motion was passed because*:
a. students need to know
b. we need to satisfy our student desire for protests
c. nice mechanism for lobby days
*I abstained

THE BUDGET CAN BE FOUND HERE (thank you UBC Insiders), but before you look, I warn you, it would never fly in the CUS (where is the variance? I need more numbers!): http://blogs.ubc.ca/ubcinsiders/files/2009/09/provincial_lobbying_cuts-campaign_budget.pdf

Motion #5

Lobby Days (check out the flow chart):

Lobby days flow chart.
Amendment: Money was taken from the presidents fund
Motion Passed*
*I voted against
THE BUDGET CAN BE FOUND HERE (thank you UBC Insiders):http://blogs.ubc.ca/ubcinsiders/files/2009/09/lobby_days_budget.pdf

“A wise man once said that it’s better to have one percent of something than 100% of nothing”
-Geoff

What does this all mean to you? Well, it means that you’ll be “more aware” of funding cuts and that some councilors will fight for you in Victoria come October.

“I’m gonna stop talking now because I don’t understand what’s going on” – Lin

And that’s it! Make sure you check out the new UBC Insiders blog for all your AMS needs!

XOXO,

AMS REP