Eshana Bhangu, Julia Burnham, Cole Evans, Chris Hakim and Max Holmes are your next student senators-at-large.
During their campaigns, the nine candidates debated issues of equity and diversity, the climate crisis, accessibility and upcoming policies like the Inclusion Action Plan and Indigenous Strategic Plan.
After a crowded race, newcomer Bhangu broke through as one of two newcomers elected.
With a platform based around support for international and Indigenous students, improved Senate transparency, open educational resources and streamlining mental health support access for students, Bhangu is excited to start her tenure. She hopes to work with the Admissions Committee in improving Indigenous representation.
“I can’t believe it. As a first year [and] as a first-year runner, I am so happy [and] so thrilled that I won alongside such experienced candidates and I can’t wait to start working with them,” she said.
Senate newcomer and current-VP Administration Evans was also elected AMS president. His platform pushed for an external review of the Senate and better learning spaces for students.
“[I’m] really glad that UBC elected me to Senate, and just ready to get to work for students at the Senate and really make a difference,” he said.
All three incumbents — Burnham, Hakim and Holmes — won re-election. The three hope to continue work on their previous projects.
“I’m humbled and honoured by students that they have given me the opportunity to serve again,” said Holmes, who was also re-elected to the Board of Governors. Holmes hopes to help oversee the implementation of the Inclusion Action Plan and push the Senate to fully endorse the Indigenous Strategic Plan — goals shared by his fellow candidates Burnham and Hakim.
“[I’m] looking forward to the opportunity to serve for yet again another term and really make sure that we’re transparent, accessible and serving the entire university community,” he added.
Not unlike last year, Burnham’s platform centred around equity and inclusion. The re-elected student Senator is pushing for better trauma training, implementation of the long-awaited Indigenous Strategic Plan, and amendments to summer course award eligibility.
“I am so excited there is so much more work that I have to do and I think we’ve got a great team that can do it,” she said.
Resting on a finance-forward platform, current AMS President Hakim wants to fight for more opportunities through student co-op, improve Senate transparency in the triennial review and ensure greater utilization of students’ tuition.
“I’m more than happy to represent students for another year,” he said. “I’ve done it for the past three years and I’m more than happy and I’m so excited to be doing it again for students.”
He echoed his statement from last year’s presidential win when speaking about the first thing he’ll do now that he’s elected:
“We’re going to get back to work.”
This article was updated to include comments from Christopher Hakim.