AMS VP Academic Daniel Lam resigns

Almost three months after assuming his position as AMS VP Academic, Daniel Lam has resigned. This decision will take effect on July 28.

“I can’t really say much beside the fact that I did it for personal reasons,” he said. “I'm going to miss Council. I have been here for two years. It's a bittersweet moment for me to leave Council so suddenly and knowing that this is the last time I'm going to be voting in Council.”

Lam announced his resignation at the July 19 AMS Council meeting in closed session, which was entered upon his request. However, a public discussion on his resignation and the transition process was held shortly after in the meeting. 

In particular, the focus was on determining the interim VP Academic due to the imminent date of transition on July 31.

Both student Senator Jakob Gattinger and Science Undergraduate Society AMS Representative Wendy Guo were nominated for the role. Following one round of individual speeches and a question period, AMS Council voted for Gattinger to be the interim VP Academic.

“[There are] lots of challenges, but lots of opportunities for me and the team. I think the most pressing one is transition,” said Gattinger in a written statement. “We need to maintain continuity and set the table for the permanent replacement.”

When asked about his plan for this role, he identified his first priority as “[working] with the staff of the office to establish a plan of how [they] will structure things until [his] return.”

Gattinger is currently on the East Coast for work and expects to return to Vancouver on August 11. However, upon receiving this position, he notes that he is “actively trying to move [the date] up.”

Prior to this role, Gattinger has served as the VP Academic for the Engineering Undergraduate Society in the 2016/17 school year.

He will hold office from July 31 until the new VP Academic is elected in the by-election. Gattinger has stated that he will not run in the by-election.

According to AMS President Alan Ehrenholz, AMS Council’s current timeline will have a new VP Academic elected into office on September 22.

However, at this point, the campaigning period has not been determined. The final details have to wait until an Elections Committee is formed.

In the 2017 AMS Election, Lam ran unchallenged on a platform of “affordability, equity and inclusion, and the student experience.” He was also re-elected as a student Senator, and will continue this role for the upcoming year.

“I do have hope for how this office is going to go,” said Lam. “Jakob has a lot of work ahead of him in the next two months ... but I hope that the interim can set this office up for success.”

This article has been updated to clarify Gattinger’s experience and the nomination of the candidates for the interim VP Academic role.