WCW’s straight-A approach

Vice-president (operations) candidate says team combines business sense with social justice

Vice-president (operations) candidate Andrew Cameron says he wants to improve the AMS’s human resources practices.
Vice-president (operations) candidate Andrew Cameron says he wants to improve the AMS’s human resources practices.

Andrew Cameron was put in the unusual position yesterday of speaking for himself and his two running-mates, presidential candidate Allison Williams and vice-president (university affairs) candidate Yanique Williams, both of whom were in Ottawa at Queen’s Model Parliament.

The vice-president (operations) candidate said his team wants to focus on four As: advocacy, accountability, advancement and approachability.

Cameron, Comm ’09, said the commerce program has prepared him for becoming vice-president (operations).

“We learn about this stuff all the time—how business works,” he said, adding that being deputy campus activities commissioner has also taught him how the AMS works internally.

He said Queen’s has given him great opportunities so far and he wants to be able to give back.

He said his team wants to bring more awareness to the various AMS offices in order to encourage more—and more diverse—student participation.

“One of the biggest concerns we’ve seen in the AMS is the way HR [human resources] is done,” he said. “What we’re finding now is, you might have positions where many people apply and another where only one or two apply.”

Cameron said his team would create two deputy positions in the Human Resources Office to organize a recruitment campaign, highlighting different AMS positions for students.

“We want to get out there and talk to more students and get a wide range of students.”

Cameron said it’s not about the quantity but the quality of students who apply for positions.

“Recruitment is a big factor with regards to the sustainability of the AMS,” he said. “You want to make sure you’re putting the right people in the job.”

The team wants to promote issues such as diversity by advocating for the creation of a diversity certificate program for students. It would involve attending workshops, certain extracurricular activities and possibly a course.

Cameron said the details aren’t in place yet and it’s something the team would only be able to lobby for among faculty and administration. He said his area of expertise is finances and these proposals are likely influenced by both his teammates’ active involvement in extracurricular and volunteer activities.

Allison Williams, ArtSci ’09, is the AMS Foodbank head manager and was social issues commissioner in 2006-07. This year she’s also a residence don, as is Yanique Williams.

Yanique Williams is also involved with Queen’s Coalition against Racial and Ethnic Discrimination and Vogue Charity Fashion Show.

“It kind of works to our advantage,” he said. “It helps in generating ideas because none of us knows how others will react to ideas. … You can see two sides to the argument.”

He said Allison Williams, whom he met through a friend, approached him in the fall and asked if he wanted to run with her. She introduced him to Yanique Williams.

“Our platform kind of came together,” he said, adding that the team started out by going to everyone they could think of and talking about the issues they thought were important.

“We focused on common themes,” he said, adding that most of their platform was determined before the December break.

He said they’ve had a few minor disagreements they’ve been able to work out.

“That’s a prerequisite with anyone you work with. … It’s a lot of work but fun, with the team we have.”

—With files from Kerri MacDonald

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