Presidential Update - August 2019

Hi everyone! 

Over the past few weeks, OUSA has been beating the heat by planning some cool events for the upcoming year. We have a lot to look forward to, including campus visits to each of our member institutions throughout the term and, in November, our Fall General Assembly. Our Home Office has been working diligently to prepare for all of our upcoming events. 

First of all, the most wonderful time of the year is upon us: the beginning of our policy cycle for the term! Our Research & Policy Analysts, Britney and Ryan, have been working with student authors at our policy paper Think Tanks to brainstorm ideas for the three policy papers up for renewal: Gender and Sexual Diversity: LGBTQ+ Students; Ancillary Fees; and Students with Disabilities. Our authors have been working hard, and we are looking forward to further discussing these papers at our November General Assembly. 


Furthermore, OUSA recently published Accessibility: Results from the 2017 Ontario Post-Secondary Student Surveythe first of three reports sharing the findings from the Ontario Post-Secondary Student Survey. This report highlights the accessibility of Ontario’s universities as a policy priority for OUSA students, including physical and financial accessibility, as well as feeling safe and included on campus. In this report, three dimensions of accessibility are highlighted: the experiences of underrepresented groups, the ease of mobility between institutions, and the ease of traveling to and living near Ontario’s universities. Check it out here.


Our Research Intern, Linda, has been working on her Capstone Project, focusing on the experiences of LGBTQ+ students and the challenges they face on their university campuses. The results of this project will be released by the end of the summer as Linda finishes up her time at OUSA. We will miss Linda around the office come the Fall and are so grateful for her contributions to student advocacy this summer. 


Last month, we met with e-Campus Ontario to discuss our annual priorities and potential areas for collaboration. We are excited to continue working together to improve access to educational resources for all students, and to look at how we can collaborate on improving experiential learning opportunities across the province. 


As we get closer to the start of the 2019-2020 school year, we know that there continues to be work that needs to be done to support students across the province, but we are more motivated than ever to continue to advocate for an accessible, affordable, accountable, and high-quality post-secondary education. 


Until next time, 

Catherine Dunne