Student union election hits campus

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The 2011 Ryerson Students’ Union elections are finally here. News editor Sarah Del Giallo introduces the candidates


The president sets the RSU’s major policies and goals for the academic year. They oversee the other executives, direct large projects and occupy the office closest to the door.

Caitlin Smith

Caitlin Smith is a recent graduate of Ryerson’s journalism program and is the current VP Operations (VP Fin- ance). She would like to continue working with the university to eliminate the extra fees for night school classes, and she would like to develop a sexual assault support line. She would also like to hold more consistent and convenient meetings so that more volunteers will get involved with the students’ union.

Karol Pawlina

Karol Pawlina is a third-year biomedical engineering student. He would like to see extra costs for necessary program items (like those in fashion or photography) collapsed into tuition. He would like to continue the fight for lower tuition fees, and aims to make the campus a better place to live. He said he wants the RSU to work at being inclusive rather than exclusive.

VP Education

The responsibilities of the VP Education have been cut since the implementation of VP Equity. VP Education is still in charge of certain activist campaigns about education and fees, and acts as an advocate for students.

Melissa Palermo

Melissa Palermo is a second-year new media student and has volunteered for the RSU for two years. She wants to lobby to prevent course selections from being cut and would like to see more funding for graduate programs. She also wants to work with students’ unions provincially to make education an election issue in the upcoming provincial election.

Ecem Guler

Ecem Guler is a third-year industrial engineering student who would like to improve campus study space by having empty classrooms open to book as is currently possible with private rooms in the library. She would like to make this happen, if not all school year long, at least during the examination period.

VP Equity

VP Equity is in charge of campaigns against racism and homophobia and supervises the Equity and Sustainability Committee.

Rodney Diverlus

Rodney Diverlus is a third-year dance student and is the current VP Equity. He would like to establish an accessibility fund to make student events more inclusive. He wants to start campus wide anti-oppression training, making it available to students as well as campus groups. He would like to expand the Expression Against Oppression week and increase general awareness of equity issues.

Donna Ryder

Donna Ryder is a third-year social work student who has been fighting human rights issues in courts since 1985. She wants an open door policy for any student with an equity issue. She wants to make Ryerson more accessible for students with disabilities, and wants to have more services for students with impaired hearing or visibility in classrooms. She would also like to push for equity training among staff and professors.

VP Student Life and Events

VP Student Life and Events organizes parties and other events including the annual Parade and Picnic. They also meet with student groups and plan many multicultural events.

Alyssa Williams

Alyssa Williams is a third-year business student and an executive for the West Indian Student Association. She would like to change some of the unused space in the student centre to a lounge. She would also like to lobby for more dance studio practice space for multi- cultural groups. She would like to expand the week of welcome, and keep current events free.

Natalia Pawlina

Natalia Pawlina is a fourth-year medical physics student. She would like to communicate more with the student body about events they would like to see. She would like to push to have the Kerr Hall quad turned into a legitimate soccer field in the warm months, and a collapsible hockey rink in the winter. She would also like to start a street hockey tournament on Gould Street.

VP Operations (Previously known as VP Finance)

VP Operations balances the books and supervises RSU services including the Used-Book Room and selling Metropasses. Sets the budget for the RSU and affiliated student groups.

Sean Carson

Sean Carson is a fourth-year film student and is the current VP Student Life and Events. He would like to bring RSU services, like discounts on movies and sporting events, to students in the Ted Rogers School of Management. He would like to get discounted Toronto Football Club tickets for students. He would like to keep Gould Street closed, and have the closure extend to Church Street.

Mark Single

Mark Single wants to maintain fiscal responsibility. Singlewants to trim the RSU budget by half. He says he will cut services he feels are unnecessary such as CKLN, the SCC office that offers Metropasses, and discount AMC tickets. He also wants to cut ties with the Canadian Federation of Students. Single says these cuts will put back at least $40 in the hands of students so they can choose how to spend it.


  1. Donna Ryder KNOWS equity and is the perfect student to do some actual work on campus addressing these issues. The RSU and the student body would be lucky to have Ryder’s expertise, passion and dedication as the VP Equity!!!

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