ASUS celebrates 125 years

ASUS celebrated with a number of events this week in preparation for its 125th anniversary this coming November. 

Brandon Jamieson, the president of ASUS, said the week’s events were a perfect way to celebrate with the student body before the weather became too cold. 

In 1890, “The Arts Society” was formed as a male-only society on Queen’s campus. It wasn’t until 1967 that the society merged with the Levana Society, the all-female society on campus, forming the Arts and Science Undergraduate Society, known today as ASUS.

The original mission of ASUS was three-pronged: to fund trips for male students to visit all-female colleges elsewhere in Canada, to fundraise for the Queen’s football team and raise money for new reading spaces on campus. 

Today, ASUS provides over 2,000 volunteer opportunities, and this year alone it received more than 600 applications from students for hired positions. The society, which has a $1.5 million operating budget, now deals with matters of equity, social justice and academic advocacy, delivers services to student and provides financial aid for student initiatives.

“We started as a team of a few male students in 1890 and today we are a team of over 2,000 students generating programming for close to 12,000 students,” Jamieson said.

In celebration of 125 years of operation, ASUS handed out free merchandise, free food and hosted a Throwback event at the Underground. 

Jamieson said the anniversary was “incredibly humbling”, and a testament to ASUS’s success. 

The idea behind the celebration was to “reinforce that desire for us to be recognizable by the student body,” he added.

“To be remembered, we have to do something that connects with everyday students,” he said.

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