Candidate profile: S.G. Krishna, VP External

S.G. Krishna is a second-year commerce student running for AMS VP External with a focus on improving job opportunities for international students and increasing the ease of opting out of the U-Pass.

Krishna has no formal leadership experience on campus, but stressed his multicultural communication experience will help him “talk more to people and to negotiate and persuade my ideas to them.”

“I thought, ‘Let me try to do something for society, for UBC,’ because I’ve learned a lot here and met many new people here,” said Krishna.

Krishna’s main focus is on improving the access and support international students have for jobs in Vancouver, which he claims lags behind those of their domestic peers. Although career development is not usually contained under the VP External portfolio and he gave no specific strategies to achieve this goal, Krishna says it is all a part of helping students.

“People who are from here have many connections — like from family, friends, whatever it is — but for international students, there are no supports,” he said.

When asked about the upcoming referendum to renew the U-Pass, Krishna responded that the AMS should “get rid of the U-Pass for people who don’t want it.

“In my year one, I never went out of UBC — I think just three times in a year — so I think I paid like $160 bucks per month, but it’s a waste,” said Krishna. (He misspoke, meaning $160 per term.) He did not clarify how he would negotiate for further opt-out flexibility or ensure that this did not increase the overall cost for students in the long-run.

On transit — one of the VP External’s most significant issues — Krishna argued that it was “working perfectly,” but still too expensive and that he will lobby for heated bus-stations at UBC. He also believes the AMS should lobby the City of Vancouver for increased snow removal services on weekends.

“I think UBC needs to be more organized. People have to clean the roads on the weekends also, because [students] stay here too, so it creates a problem.”

Both major issues for the VP External, Krishna has no policies related open educational resources advocacy in his platform, and only made public his intention to advocate for equalized domestic and international tuition rates five days into the campaign. When asked about the Rent with Rights campaign and Policy 131 on sexual misconduct, Krishna responded that he “wasn’t aware” of the campaign or the policy, and in closing his interview, he appeared to ask the interviewer her own thoughts on what he should be addressing.

“As a VP External, what other privileges can I get to speak out of the box? Like would I have any other responsibilities on me … ?”