Wiseman & Goodman use dissent as a strength

ASUS executive candidates look to strengthen society

Brendan Goodman, left, and Jon Wiseman say they’ll work to make student government accessible.
Brendan Goodman, left, and Jon Wiseman say they’ll work to make student government accessible.
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Jon Wiseman and Brendan Goodman met in first year and bonded over their mutual love of politics and the Toronto Maple Leafs.

The ASUS executive candidates — both ArtSci ’16 — don’t agree on everything, they said, but they think that’s an advantage.

Wiseman, who’s running for president, describes himself politically as slightly left-of-centre, while Goodman, the VP candidate, said his constantly changing ideas have left him straddling the social left and the fiscal right.

Wiseman said he’s proud of the fact that they’re not always on the same page.

“We may disagree on some things, but at the end of the day that sort of strengthens us because we bring two different perspectives to the table,” he said.

Wiseman, a former ASUS representative, is currently the ASUS Commissioner of Internal Affairs, a role that has seen him juggle the faculty’s budgets to increase its efficiency.

Throughout his time at Queen’s, Wiseman has been active on community Facebook pages, answering questions and providing advice for new students entering his faculty and department.

“I think it’s a good thing to do to make students feel more welcome,” he said.

Wiseman and Goodman developed their platform in conjunction with a variety of organizations on campus, as well as the current ASUS executive, in an effort to cover as many issues as possible.

If elected, the pair intend to organize events and activities for upper-year students during Orientation Week — similar to the ReUnion Street festival held by the AMS this past Homecoming — and implement open budget consultations for students to give their input on the society’s financial choices.

Wiseman and Goodman also intend to reach out to COMPSA and CESA, through joint meetings and initiatives to better integrate and support ASUS’s sister faculties.

The pair also intend to strengthen the student advocacy role of DSCs and organize department-specific networking nights, although they added that these initiatives would be the responsibility of the Academic Affairs Commissioner they’d hire this spring.

Upon assuming office, Wiseman and Goodman will prioritize creating a plan for the future of the ASUS Core. The faculty headquarters, located on University Ave., is in a state of relative disrepair.

“Every time somebody comes up [to my office] to meet me, they’re like, ‘These stairs are not up to code’,” Wiseman said.

The second and third floors, where the human rights and equity offices are located, are not wheelchair accessible, he added.

“It’s sort of the elephant in the room,” he said. “What happens when we have a commissioner in a wheelchair?”

Goodman is co-editor in chief of the Tartan, an online student-run publication managed by ASUS that has recently been criticized for chronic delays in its publishing schedule. The website went live during the second week of classes this term after media insurance and logistical issues were resolved.

Goodman began work at the Tartan after current ASUS President Adam Grotsky asked him to apply for the position late last year, when Goodman was serving as an ASUS rep. Goodman said he’s currently on a leave of absence from the publication, and has no access to passwords or administrative privileges relevant to the publication.

Goodman said he’d like to set up an in-house mental health and counselling service to help Health, Counselling and Disability Services with an increasing student load. Together, the team plans to implement the findings of the Mental Health Strategic Plan, an ASUS report due to be released in the coming weeks.

“HCDS is a great resource,” Goodman said, “but if they’re swamped, what are we going to do to alleviate some of the pressure?

“It’s about picking up where infrastructure is leaving off.”

Read the Journal’s profile of Brandon Jamieson and Andrew DiCapua, also running for ASUS executive.

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