Amanda Fitzpatrick for

VP Student Life

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Equity

Accessibility

Wellness

 

why i’m qualified

  • Double major in Speech Communication and Women’s Studies

  • Glow Centre Coordinator for 3 terms

  • Glow Centre Exec (Social Director, External Director, Advocacy Director)

  • Facilitator for the Making Spaces program where I taught staff and faculty about LGBTQ+ inclusion

  • LGBTQ+ Speakers Bureau

  • Guest Lecturer

  • Glow Centre Peer Support Volunteer

  • Women’s Centre Volunteer

  • Beyond this I have supported numerous other equity campaigns and have always aimed to build relationships and collaborate with other student leaders

Why I’m Running

Throughout my undergrad, I’ve dedicated myself to improving the campus experience for all students. My studies, volunteer commitments, and work experiences have focused on promoting equity through community engagement. Through my experiences working with LGBTQ+ students and marginalized groups on campus I understand the existing barriers that inhibit the student experience in campus life and academics. In this position, I want to break down barriers both in Feds and throughout campus so that everyone has access to the quality education that we all expect and deserve

Equity

  • Support racialized students

    • Work with RAISE and the Equity office to create a Making Spaces training specific to anti-racism

    • Advocate to the university to create an emergency fund for Waterloo Indigenous Student Centre in the case where their funding has been cut by the government.

    • Support the ISA and WISC with the Indigenization strategy

  • Create an equity training for dons focused on LGBTQ+ needs, anti-racism, and harm reduction

    • For many students, especially in first year, residence is where we spend a lot of our time. If this is an unsafe or unfriendly experience it directly affects how well we do in school and our likelihood to get involved in student life.

  • Continue working to make name changes on Quest easier

  • Create spotlight series to showcase student initiatives

  • Continue to work to get free menstrual products on campus

 
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Accessibility

  • Purchase a CART Captioning system to be used at big Feds events like General Meetings

    • Communication access real-time translation (CART), also called open captioning or real-time stenography, or simply real-time captioning, is the general name of the system that court reporters, closed captioners and voice writers, and others use to convert speech to text.

  • Ensure Feds marketing as well as all clubs and services include image descriptions on social media posts

  • Advocate for more gender neutral bathrooms

    • In order for all students to be able to access public space bathrooms need to be accessible to everyone. If someone doesn’t have an accessible bathroom in their building they will have to spend extra time walking across campus to find one which takes time away from learning.

 

Health and Wellness

  • Create a comprehensive mental health resource

    • As VP Student Life I will work with all the clubs and services on campus to create an upstream mental health resource. It will open with an identity/interest checklist that lists items such as gender identity, sexual orientation, race, religion, program, if someone has faced food insecurity, if they are an international student, etc. After checking off what applies all the applicable resources will come up including food bank, Glow, BASE, accessibility services, etc. By showing more resources than are simply mental health specific we will be able to help students find community spaces on campus that can fill gaps that peer support and counselling may miss. This form will be anonymous and not shared with Feds or the university.

  • Establish a harm-reduction working group to assess steps Feds and the University can take to improve accessibility on campus for students with addictions

  • Work with Athletics to start up Women and Trans only gym hours

 

Clubs and Services

  • Work with VP Operations and Finance to increase access to funding by going into a cost-sharing agreement with the university

  • Streamline an uploading system as part of the clubs and services event form that uploads all of the student life events onto a Feds calendar

  • Continue the use of a coordinator committee but split it in half to create an equity specific committee

    • The coordinator committee that was initiated this past term was helpful however due to the different forms of services we offer it would be more helpful to create two separate groups

 
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Sustainability

  • Continue to take part in meaningful consultation with Sustainable Campus Initiative in order to move forward their service’s goals and objectives

  • Support SCI’s 5-year plan.

  • Raise awareness about initiatives SCI already has in place and celebrate their wins. It’s important that students know about all of the incredible work that is already taking place on our campus.

  • Work with SCI to find a permanent space for a second hand clothing store

 

Fair compensation

  • Give more compensation to students involved in working groups and committees

    • Even if this is a small amount it is important to show our gratitude to students that take part in these important groups, especially since many of these working groups pertain to equity issues. Marginalized students do a lot of unpaid work on our campus to make it better, I think its about time people start getting compensated for their labour.

  • Get service coordinators paid $15 an hour

    • Service coordination is a huge job which can work out to 20+ hours a week. The work that these students do on our campus often goes unrecognized and by being unpaid makes it difficult to fill these roles. I believe there are plenty of students on our campus that want to get involved and take these jobs however putting in this amount of work for a small honorarium is simply not feasible to the average student. Its important to note that many universities across Canada have already begun making these paid positions.

    • Some services are able to get offloaded to the university if they have a formal offices as a part of UWaterloo. By offloading these services Feds can use their funding to go towards paying coordinators. If it will cost more than the available funds we will enter a cost-sharing agreement with the university. For offloaded services the student positions will still be available under the university.

 

Sexual Violence

  • Continue to work with Amanda Cook, the Sexual Violence Response Coordinator, to ensure consent programming is highly visible and accessible to all staff, faculty, and students.

  • Run a campus safety audit, including robust student consultation, to indicate where students feel most unsafe on campus in order to implement effective safety measures

  • Complete needs-assessment for implementation of a walk-home program on campus to ensure students feel safe on their way home

  • Work with the President and VP Ed to advocate to the university and CECA for WaterlooWorks employer co-op placements to have mandatory sexual violence policies

 

Satellite Campuses

  • Complete satellite campus visits more frequently to ensure students’ needs are being met

  • Ensure that services work to provide fully accessible services and resources to all satellite campus students

    • Implement virtual peer support hours so students aren’t limited to campus resources by distance

    • Start a satellite campus consultation group made up of student volunteers from each satellite campus to act as a first-point of contact to facilitate communication regarding needed services and resources

    • Compile an online resource guide specific to each city so that students can access counselling, food banks, LGBTQ+ groups, and more in their local community