Volume 92, Issue 53
Tuesday, December 8, 1998
Communicating an up-Hill battle
As VP-campus issues, mild-mannered Pete Hill is responsible for defending the equity and diversity of the citizens of Western. He uses his formidable power of exhaustive speech to advocate freedom of opportunity for all students regardless of age, sex, race, disability, religion or sexual orientation.
Life has proven interesting for this VP-campus issues, who is the first to admit he has not been able to fulfill all of his campus promises so far. "I made a ton of promises. I didn't listen to advice given to me and put too much into my promises," Hill said.
That being said, Hill has worked hard towards promoting equity on campus as the University Students' Council's first VP-campus issues. He was successful in holding monthly meetings of the campus affairs coordinating committee as well as organizing a well run Equity Week. "Equity Week was much bigger than last year and we're hoping it will be even bigger next year."
Hill was also partly responsible for the Women's Issues Network finding a new home in the USC after the eviction of the Association of Continuing Education Studies. "I'm happy it could have happened on my watch," Hill said.
He has seen problems arise during his term in the form of the heat he faced from students after the Oxfam booth set up in the University Community Centre was not allowed to put up a banner advertising international Buy Nothing Day. Students complained the USC was siding with corporations, not with them.
"It was the best decision for all parties involved. I don't apologize for it but I feel I have let some students down. I'm a little disappointed."
Some of Hill's other ideas such as information handouts in Frosh Week kits and a welcome wall in the USC atrium fell by the wayside because of cost and practicality reasons. "It was a lame idea. I think money was better spent elsewhere."
Another of Hill's ideas, which would have seen info sessions held at residences during election time, will not happen because Hill simply forgot about it. "I messed up," Hill said.
This VP's focus for the remainder of his term is on trying to follow through on unfulfilled campus promises as well as keeping the new position of VP-campus issues evolving and moving forward. His biggest regrets this term have involved situations, like Oxfam, when communication broke down and conflicts arose.
"I like to keep the peace and keep people talking. I have been successful in many efforts but sometimes it fails. When we see conflicts erupt I feel personally responsible."
- Continue plans to implement direct-line phones on campus to Aboutown Taxi
- Begin a council pairing program to encourage students to run for students' council regardless of their background
- Work with this year's commissioners to create broad and permanent goals to better define their portfolios
- Try to find multiple source funding to make a safety audit possible
- Pool resources on awareness programs and coordinate weeks of similar messages to save time and money
- Continue to improve communications between the USC and administration
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