The motion to stay hydrated carries to OUSA’s 59th General Assembly recap!

What a great General Assembly we just had at McMaster University in Hamilton! Student leaders once again gathered for four days to discuss and approve student-written policy papers- this time with a big water bottle in hand, courtesy of our host, McMaster Students Union. This was a refreshing GA with some changes to the itinerary to give delegates more time to submit amendments, authors more time to conduct rewrites, and a plenary session that ended at 5:13 pm with all papers passed (if you know, you know). 


To start off our weekend full of discussion on identity and lived experience,we welcomed our delegates in their cultural/traditional wear on Thursday, March 7th.  the three policy papers up for ratification this GA were:

  • Gender-based & Sexual Violence Prevention and Response
  • Addressing Racism & Religious Discrimination
  • International Students & International Education

We also had the pleasure of having Possibility Seeds at our welcoming ceremony to provide some expert knowledge on gender equity and sexual violence. Anoodth Naushan provided our delegates with a greater understanding of gender-based and sexual violence before sending them off to give feedback in the breakout room sessions.

As always GA has three main components to ensure student voices from each delegation are maximized on our policy papers: breakout room sessions, authors rewrites, and plenary. We started the conference with two days of breakout rooms where student authors from Brock, McMaster, Waterloo, Wilfred Laurier, Trent-Durham, and Western sought feedback from delegates across all our member schools to ensure the papers accurately represented students’ concerns. 


Following our normal structure, we have introduced 2 new sessions to our GA itinerary: the delegates’ preliminary amendment and delegates' advocacy brainstorming session. These sessions aim to provide more space for collaboration and discussion on the papers outside of breakout sessions, to resolve more concerns before plenary, and to generate great potential new advocacy priorities from already engaged students.   Another step in our student-centric operation framework!

Without a picture to prove it, you will just have to take my word for it that at the end of 3 long days of breakout room sessions and advocacy brainstorming, we headed into the darkness…of a movie theater with reclining chairs and enjoyed Kung Fu Panda 4. Dragon warriors of student-led advocacy truly!


After 9 hours and some amendments to the amendments (we are still OUSA after all) on plenary Sunday, we successfully passed all three policy papers! Instead of driving in the dark, we sailed into the sunset as we left Hamilton with nothing but gratitude to the team at McMaster Students Union for hosting us and all the SC members who ensured all delegates were well prepared and cared for!

Enjoy this picture of our MSU Alum photobombing the current MSU team.

Stay hydrated and we will see you all soon!