A third AMS official from this year’s staff has resigned.
AMS Media Director Julie McKernan, ArtSci ’06, officially leaves her position today.
“It’s been a really difficult decision,” she said. “I have been thinking about it for a couple months, and it’s taken that long because it’s such a wonderful opportunity. It’s a great position.
“But I have other things going on in my life, and I can’t devote enough energy to the position to feel that I’m doing [it] up to my standards.”
McKernan joins Danny Saposnik, ArtSci ’07, who resigned from his position of AMS communications officer in early September. Lindsay Tate English, ArtSci ’06 also resigned from the AMS as community liaison coordinator in early October.
AMS President Ethan Rabidoux said McKernan spoke to the AMS executive on Monday about her decision to leave the position for personal reasons.
“When people tell you ‘personal reasons’ [for leaving], you just accept that,” he said.
Rabidoux added it’s not uncommon for AMS positions to be vacated before a term is over.
“We try to help them out as best as possible, but some people just don’t finish the year,” he said. “That happens in every year, that you have a couple [of] people, whether it’s managers or officers, that just don’t make the entire year.
“It’s definitely unfortunate, but it does happen.”
McKernan said she is looking forward to the opportunity to enjoy campus during her last year before graduating this spring.
“I want to actually take the free time I have appreciating everything campus has to offer,” she said.
Jenn Hirano, AMS VP (operations), said the media director position will not be rehired this year.
“We felt there was too little time and too steep a learning curve for somebody to learn the position,” she said. “It would be pretty much a game of constant catch-up.”
The media director position was created this year, along with the student services director and food and entertainment director. The three positions assumed the responsibilities previously held by two—services director and media and services director.
Hirano said McKernan’s portfolio will be divided up between the two other directors.
“Ashik [Bhat, student services director] is taking Yearbook and Convocation Services and P&CC,” she said. “Julie [Hirst, food and entertainment director] will get the Journal, CFRC and Studio Q.”
Bhat and Hirst will each receive a $1,500 honorarium—in addition to their salaries—as compensation for the services they are taking on, she said.
Hirano said the system of having three services directors is something new this year, and something that will continue despite McKernan’s departure.
“We’re going look at that again, but there will be the three director positions next year,” she said.
Rabidoux said Tate English’s position as AMS community liaison coordinator was closed after she resigned, and will not reopen next year.
“Basically, by the end of August, [Tate English] and I sat down and discussed it,” he said. “The position wasn’t going anywhere, essentially, for the rest of the year and … we agreed that unless someone had some brilliant ideas, the job was not going to really take off, which is why we haven’t rehired for it.” Rabidoux added that the position, which was to liaise between the Kingston Economic Development Corporation (KEDCO) and the AMS, was not a valuable job because of the organizational changes that have taken place at KEDCO in the last nine months.
“The job was just created last year, close to the end of the year, and it was created with much haste,” he said. “We inherited a job still without much form to it, and so there is that problem … that it didn’t have a well-defined mandate.”
Rabidoux said the liaison position is being taken off the books, and its responsibilities redistributed, so future executives will not hire for the position.