Students get multiple choices in election for science and technology representative
by Bryce Visser
It’s not often that council representatives running in the Students’ Association of Mount Royal University’s student elections face challengers, but that’s exactly what’s happening with this year’s election.
The position of science and technology representative is being contested between incumbent Shiv MacFarlane and challenger Arielle Muriel.
“I find it absolutely amazing that there are two people running for this position,” MacFarlane said. “I think that the reason is because there are two people who identify as being science and technology fans and that’s a core of their personality.”
“I think it’s awesome,” Muriel said. “I think with all the publicity that science has been getting, with all the new technologies – we really are living in a technological age – it’s becoming not only cool to be a nerd and cool to be a scientist, but it’s becoming mainstream.”
Running for re-election, MacFarlane said he wants to continue the work he’s done in reforming the admissions and registrations systems at Mount Royal.
“I think that the most help that I’ve been to Mount Royal has been the opportunities I’ve presented to the Executive Council,” MacFarlane said. “True to my position, I’m an advocate for communication and for better computer systems on campus.
“I’ve pushed for the registration process to be adapted, adjusted and improved, and I’d like to see forums implemented throughout the school.”
Muriel said her biggest strength is her connections within the science faculty, including a period as a research assistant in the environmental sciences department. She said being a familiar face would help her to obtain her goals.
Muriel also said she would like to see an increase in communication across the board with students representing their voice and what they’re interested in and “spreading that to the people who make the decisions and spend the money.”
One of the biggest changes coming to science and technology students at MRU over the coming year is the opening of the extension to the science wing, something both candidates see as having great potential for raising MRU’s profile.
“It opens up a bit more opportunity for research,” Muriel said. “I think hands-on training really is the make-or-break point for students in not only getting jobs but representing at the top of their field as well.
“It’s not just a physical structure, but it’s an identity and an information structure within the university,” MacFarlane said. “I think it will give us an opportunity to see the science and technology division with better tools, with more options, and new options when it comes to courses and learning.”
MacFarlane said he believes that no matter who wins, the students will benefit.
“I think that the best solution to this competition would be for Arielle to join me in council in one respect or another,” MacFarlane said. “It would be a real benefit that – even if she doesn’t win – she continues to bring her passion to the student council.”
“My first concern is motivating people to get out and vote,” Arielle said. “If this competition can do that, even if I don’t win, it will be a success.”