By Cristina Paolozzi, October 10 2021—
The Students’ Union (SU) is holding a by-election for several different positions, one of which is the Senate representative. The Gauntlet sat down with Armaan Sidhu to talk more about his platform and what he plans to do in the position.
While this position is uncontested, Sidhu’s platform is ambitious. A first-year student in Kinesiology, he mainly intends to advocate for affordable education, especially through the creation of more scholarships.
He plans on creating scholarships to increase the accessibility of post-secondary education for more marginalized students including students with disabilities and low-income students.
“I’ve noticed that the U of C doesn’t promote a lot of the different scholarships that you can get,” he said. “And through some other organizations I can get in touch with, I’d want to offer more scholarships for students.”
While the University of Calgary does have a database where students can search for awards, bursaries and scholarships, Sidhu’s focus is to create more opportunities for students to access their education.
The platform point that Sidhu is most passionate about is his goal to develop a more environmentally sustainable campus. He says that he has recently been called to action by changes to the environment caused by the climate crisis and said that he’d like to commit to ensuring the university does its part to reduce its carbon footprint.
“Trying to make a more sustainable university would at least help to reach that goal,” he said.
Sidhu’s platform also mentioned that he would like to integrate students within the university to promote more leadership. When asked to clarify this point, Sidhu said that he plans to create more awareness about the clubs on campus available for students as he believes that club promotion has been lacking.
“It’s hard to find which clubs there are because I was looking to join a couple of clubs myself, and I noticed that you do see them [advertised] occasionally, but it’s hard to figure out what clubs you can join and what might be of interest to you,” he said. “So trying to get clubs to promote more would be really helpful.”
Sidhu sees this strategy as a way to connect students on campus and have more opportunities to create friendships.
Similarly to the university’s scholarship database, the SU’s club website also hosts a portal for students to find a club to join based on different topics of interest. However, club promotion has been limited this year due to the pandemic.
Sidhu’s passion is evident, and as a first-year student he’s got a lot of energy. His platform is ambitious — albeit vague — and he fails to recognize resources that are already offered by the SU or the university. However, he would make an eager Senate representative, with much room for growth.
Online voting in the SU by-election will take place Oct. 13–15 and can be done through the myUofC Student Centre. Voting begins at 9 a.m. on Oct. 13 and closes at 4 p.m. on Oct. 15. To learn more about Armaan Sidhu and his campaign, check out his and the other candidates’ platforms online. All undergraduate students registered for the Fall 2021 semester are eligible to vote.