Recap: Engineering Society presidential candidates debated society direction

EngSoc candidates address topics of student resources and society impact

Sam Anderson (left) and Taylor Sawadsky (center) are the two candidates in the running for EngSoc presdient. Kevin Corey (right) is running as EngSoc senator.

A crowd packed the atrium of the Integrated Learning Centre on Wednesday as Engineering Society (EngSoc) presidential candidates debated over issues facing their faculty.

Candidates Sam Anderson and Taylor Sawadsky, both Sci ’17, focused on student resources and the role of the society in the faculty.

The debate began at 6 p.m., with onlookers collecting behind the filled seats.

In his opening statement, Anderson emphasized creating a society that would do more for the faculty and community of engineering students.

By further funding for discipline clubs and providing academic support, Anderson said, he hopes to build a foundation for academic success and launch careers.

Sawadsky opened by advocating for a more accessible EngSoc, which she said would provide students with opportunities for involvement and the support they need for personal and professional growth.

By implementing exit interviews, she said, she hopes to better understand the society’s directorial and volunteer positions.

After a span of mostly uncontested commentary, the first major point of contention emerged.


Plans for the summer months

Sawadsky said she would give herself a goal to develop position descriptions, which Anderson responded to by stating that a focus on personal projects would be a waste of student dollars.

Instead, Anderson said the president should support directors to help them excel in their roles.

“Let someone else have the experience. Your job is to lead,” he said.

Sawadsky rebutted by stating that while projects aren’t the best use of time, she’ll be able to both work on projects and support directors.

Anderson then replied that it would be “foolish and cocky” if he thought he would be the best candidate to achieve his projects.


Fall Orientation planning

In response to a question regarding plans for this fall’s Orientation Week, Sawadsky said she’ll focus on integrating upper years back into the Highland Games and make Frosh Week more accessible and supportive.

Anderson agreed, adding that a strong community should continue after Frosh Week.

When asked about the support of discipline clubs, Anderson emphasized putting more money into the clubs as a means of support.

Sawadsky disagreed, stating that they needed more support from EngSoc. Anderson rebutted by stating that EngSoc needs to give autonomy to the clubs to let them reach their full potential.


Queen’s international reputation

In response to a question about improving the international reputation of Queen’s, Sawadsky said that they should “take big steps, make big milestones” and work on attracting top international students.

Anderson suggested supporting the efforts of graduates and building relationships with faculty in hopes of attracting more funding.

In their closing statements, Sawadsky said she wished to give each student opportunities to grow and reach their potential. Anderson stated that he wished to achieve big things for the Engineering Society.

“Together we can create a community where every engineer is proud to wear their GPA,” Anderson said.

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