WLUSU board of directors could go down to 12 directors in 2015-16

(Graphic by Lena Yang)
(Graphic by Lena Yang)

The Wilfrid Laurier University Student’s Union (WLUSU) is beginning to do a little spring-cleaning of their own.

For starters, the WLUSU board of directors  is looking at reducing its number of elected members from 15 to 12.

“There was a committee struck in January that looked at what the board side should be in the future and they made a report,” said WLUSU chair and chief governance officer (CGO), Jordan Epstein.

“That committee came out with a final recommendation, which was 12.”

Former WLUSU chair and CGO, Jon Pryce, was the one who initiated the motion of reducing the board. However, according to Epstein, WLUSU has been noticing the redundancies of roles for quite a few years.

In 2007, the WLUSU board switched from an operational model to a governance model, meaning that the board now operates at a much higher level and does not deal with as many day-to-day decisions.

“The old board had a need [for 15 members] because there were all these committees that needed people to sit on,” Epstein explained. “That’s no longer the case.”
The proposition will be taken to a referendum for Laurier students at the next WLUSU election in 2014. If the students vote in favour for a reduced board, this change would come in to effect in the 2015-16 academic year.

Director Matt McLean sat on last year’s committee that brainstormed the motion.

“Some of the things they were concerned about when they started this committee was that it would be more cost effective for the Union to have less board members,” he said. “It’s been hard for them to meet quota and they were having problems with attendance.”

Another key reason as to why WLUSU is expressing support in favour of a reduced board is that it would make elections much more competitive in coming years. With roughly twenty candidates running for the board of directors each election, the odds of being voted in are highly likely.

“It’s more about engagement,” Epstein added. “Having a smaller group of directors will provide opportunities for them to do more and be better representatives of the students.”

“It’s reflecting the current responsibilities of the board and how they have changed.”

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