Monday, January 19, 2009

Presidential Platforms: Paul Korczyk

Alex's platform is still not up (although I am now greeted by a nice profile shot, so as long as I see his right side, I'll recognize him), so I'm moving on to looking at Paul's. I was interested by the contrast of issues I found discussed on his website. Here I'm hoping to highlight some of the strengths and weaknesses, as I see them.

The first thing I really noticed was a lack of breadth in terms of the issues discussed. More than half of the platform (which contains 5 points) talks about student involvement on campus. The platform almost entirely neglects issues that students are concerned about- things like housing, tuition/other fees, etc. However, that's not to say that the platform doesn't have its good ideas. The first point of the platform- that of Communication- actually lays out some good ideas in terms of how to get students informed about some of the issues. Things like going to residences or blogging about the goings on in the AMS strike me as a good idea. I'm not sure how big of an audience the AMS elections attract, however, and I would conjecture that even fewer people would come out to get updates about the AMS. This issue also sort of ties in to the issue of student involvement on campus. While that's a separate blog post, I do think that the idea of having the AMS collaborate with other student societies to put on events is a good one- it's not something that I can recall having happened off the top of my head. The one problem I have is that there doesn't seem to be a complete understanding of the challenges involved with, for instance, reinstating the ACF, or with getting the students who are already disinterested in what's going at the university to pay attention to some of the issues. The bigger problem is that too much attention is focused on student involvement at the expense of bigger issues that the president would have more control over. Thus, while the platform has some good ideas that would be easy to implement, it lacks knowledge of the AMS, how it works, and of broader issues concerning both the students and the university.