Here are notes from the special AMS Council meeting of August 24, 2022:
Special Meeting: Because Council could not reach quorum at the scheduled August 17 meeting, AMS President Eshana Bhangu called a special meeting held virtually to deal with some of the items from August 17.
Air Conditioning: Council allocated $755,000 from the Capital Projects Fund for the Nest air conditioning project.
Choosing an Interim Executive: Council approved a Code change to prescribe the procedure for finding an interim Executive if one is needed.
Committee Appointments: Council suspended the policy on committee appointments to allow appointments to take place in August.
Elections Administrator: Council approved an increase in pay for the Elections Administrator to make it easier to recruit for the position.
Academic Experience Survey (AES): Council heard a presentation from Dana Turdy, the VP Academic & University Affairs (VPAUA), in which she reported on the issues raised in the survey, such as affordability, food insecurity, financial hardship, discrimination, and safety. She said there is good awareness of AMS Services and also of UBC’s counselling service.
In response to a question from Science Councillor Katherine Feng about the decrease in the number of survey respondents this year, the VPAUA said the problem was the timing of the survey. The President explained that the increasing number of surveys meant the AES got pushed back to April, during exams.
In response to a question from Grad Student Councillor Mopelola Akinjala, the VPAUA said next year it is possible there will be a combined survey done with the Graduate Student Society.
Governance Review: Council approved the scope and timeline for the Governance Review, which will focus on Student Council and its committees rather than on the business side of the AMS.
Additional Borrowing: Council approved a motion to borrow an additional $3.9 million to pay for renovations to the lower level of the Life Building.
Accessibility: In response to a question from Arts Councillor Mathew Ho about accessibility, VP Administration Ben Du said he is planning to do a safety audit of the Nest, which will include issues of accessibility.
SUDS: VP External Erin Co said SUDS (the Student Union Development Summit of student unions from across the country) had been a great success. She said she has received positive response from the participants.
Child Care: Managing Director Keith Hester said the University is no longer going to operate the Osprey Child Minding Centre on the fourth floor of the Nest, so the AMS is looking into the possibility of operating an AMS child care service in that space.
Student Services Manager: In response to a question from Katherine Feng about the timeline to replace Mitchell Prost, who has just resigned as Student Services Manager, the President said there will be more on this next week.
Culinary Training: The Managing Director said the AMS is starting up a training program to get more people to work as culinary staff for the AMS. The hope is that the program will break even, with the cost of paying an instructor being offset by the fees paid by those receiving the training.
The next regular Council meeting will be on Wednesday, August 31 in the Michael Kingsmill Forum in the Nest at 6 pm.
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