COMPSA executive election uncontested

Presidential and vice-presidential candidates sit down with The Journal

Presidential candidate Danielle Edwards.
Vice-Presidential candidate Flora Lin.

The uncontested candidates up for the two executive roles in the Computing Science Association (COMPSA) sat down with The Journal to discuss their goals for the Society.

Presidential candidate

Danielle Edward, CompSci ’21, is running uncontested for COMPSA president.

As current COMPSA events director, Edward has organized social events for the faculty, including a barbeque at the beginning of the year, a weekly coffee with professors social, and a social at the end of the year for COMPSA students. She stepped away from her position before she started campaigning to avoid a conflict of interest.

“Being in this position has really helped me gain leadership experience because I have to run a team and tell them what to do clearly, as well as explain and teach them how to do their jobs,” Edward said in an interview with The Journal. “I can trust them enough, through my training of them, that they can do their job properly.”

Edward is running on the promise that she’ll engage first- and second-year students in the faculty. Throughout her time at Queen’s, she said she’s seen incoming students lose interest in participating in student government. 

“The last two years we’ve been dropping off with the younger years in interest, at least in student government or our events and just interactions [with] them.”

She says she hopes to increase engagement by becoming more involved with other student faculties and offering students business skills and training opportunities.

“That way, Computing isn’t isolated,” Edward said. “With other people, we are stronger.”

She also plans to enforce more understanding of different resources on campus and within the faculty that are offered to students, as well as clubs they can join. Edward said she hopes this will help COMPSA students who aren’t solely “computer focused” to diversify their experience.

In the 2018-19 school year, Edward ran for vice-president (Operations), but wasn’t elected. She decided to give student government another chance this year and run for president anyways.

“I do really like student government,” Edward said. “I want to see change.”

Included in her platform is a plan to make COMPSA more available to students.

“A lot of students feel like they can’t come to us with their problems, even though that’s what we’re meant to be.”

Regarding the Student Choice Initiative, Edward says it’s “very student-oriented.”

“It’s good that they have a choice in where their money is at least going, instead of just having everything be mandatory, which could really cost them a lot financially. […] Even if it does put a bit of a damper on the clubs’ profits.”

Vice-president (Student Affairs) candidate

Running for vice-president (Student Affairs) is second-year computing student Flora Lin (’22).

Currently, Lin is the web design deputy in the Arts and Science Undergraduate Society (ASUS), a position under the marketing office. Last year, Lin worked as a first-year student intern for the marketing office, and as a photographer for COMPSA.

If Lin is elected as vice-president (Student Affairs), she plans to bring her experience in market research into her new role. She says this past experience gave her insight into what the students want out of their university experience.

“The vice-president of student affairs is really involved with other student governments,” Lin said. “I feel like I know my way around student government.”

Lin also emphasized her interest in focusing on mental health within COMPSA.

“I realized that a lot of students are very overwhelmed. Especially being in second year, I see that there’s a lot of pressure, not only for academic success, but to balance that out with social events and especially finding jobs.”

Lin said alongside her mental health advocacy, she wants to create more opportunities for career development in computing fields.

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