Marianopolis Student Union Congress
2019-2020 Academic Year
Day: April 24th, 2020
Time of Start: 4:15 PM
|Facilitator: Aria Khiabani
Meeting Type: Weekly
Notetaker and timekeeper: Zhenling Wang
|List of attendees (Congress members): Aria Khiabani, Amanda Morrone, Cherry Sun, Zhaoran Wu, Laurence Liang, Ying Chen, Ying Ge, Misha Fotovati, Zhenling Wang, Steven Gong, Michael Chalkhoun, Andrew Petrecca-Berthelet
Regrets: Darya Jabbari
List of attendees (guests): Tristan Boucher, Emanuel Curto, Maria Azadian, Mahin Sekendra (newly elected and appointed members of 2020-2021 MSU Congress)
Student Services Representative: Trudy Ste-Croix
- Call to Order
The Regular Weekly Marianopolis Student Union (MSU) Congress Meeting of April. 24th, 2020, was convened at 4:15 P.M. by President Aria Khiabani.
- Roll Call of Members
The MSU Congress Members who are present at this meeting are: Aria Khiabani, Amanda Morrone, Cherry Sun, Zhaoran Wu, Laurence Liang, Ying Chen, Ying Ge, Misha Fotovati, Zhenling Wang, Steven Gong, Michael Chalkhoun, Andrew Petrecca-Berthelet
- Guests presented by Aria Khiabani
The guests who are present at this meeting are Mahin Sekendra, a representative from the Marianopolis World Review, Tristan Boucher, Emanuel Curto, and Maria Azadian, the newly appointed and elected coordinators for 2020-2021 MSU Congress, and Trudy Ste-Croix, the Student Services Representative.
- Approval of last meeting’s Minutes
The Minutes of the Regular Weekly MSU Congress Meeting of April 17, 2020, was written by Zhenling Wang. These Minutes were approved by Aria Khiabani on the 24th day of April 2020.
- Approval of the Agenda
The Agenda of this day’s meeting has been unanimously approved.
- Unfinished Business and General Orders
- MSU Instagram account logistics
Congress members agreed that the newly created MSU Instagram account will be monitored differently from its Facebook group. Congress members suggest that the posts should be mainly regarding Congress-sponsored events or very few major events. Clubs’ promotion and COAC events can be posted as stories upon request.
It is also noted that Congress should be cautious with the frequency of posts to avoid overwhelming the Facebook MSU group. The Marianopolis demographics are very divided in terms of their main social media; some use Facebook and some use Instagram. Congress will ensure both groups have access to the necessary information it provides by posting on both social media platforms.
This week’s MSU online challenge, Livin’ it up, has only received 4 participants, possibly due to the relatively harder nature of the challenge that requires more effort. Next week’s “Art Recreation” challenge, which requires more engagement, might not receive high participation. The submissions will be collected through Google forms to ensure the quality of the pictures. Zhaoran will consider showcasing selected submissions on Instagram stories as promotion of the event and align with the way how other challenges have been conducted. The Photography Club will be selecting the winner. The prize amount for art recreation will be increased to encourage participation.
Zhaoran will organize the art recreation as a contest, separate from other challenges, and extend its duration to 2 weeks starting from next week, aligning with ArtsFest that was originally scheduled. This event will be posted as an official post. The “workout challenge” will still be scheduled next week and posted as stories.
- New Business
- Art recreation challenge presented by Zhaoran
This point has been previously addressed.
- COAC update presented by Laurence
During the last COAC meeting, the representatives shared several updates on each student union’s ongoing elections and details pertaining to its COVID-19 financial aid.
A few intercollegiate event ideas were discussed, including:
- COAC bingo (next week):
The bingo will be addressing college and CEGEP life in general and advertise COAC.
- Inter-CEGEP Kahoot
- Rally of student unions
In case of any governmental decisions made that may potentially harm students, COAC proposed to organize rallies of student unions to take a collective standpoint.
In order to smoothen next year’s COAC committee’s transition, COAC has suggested for current members to attend next year’s meetings and show support. Laurence invites MSU Congress members other than the Coordinator of External Affairs to help out as well.
- Saturday Movie Night PM presented by Cherry
Cherry experienced some technical issues. About 10-20 people watched the live stream. To increase participation, Congress will advertise future movie nights on Fridays.
This week’s movie will be Parasite.
For future movie nights, Cherry will put polls in the MSU Facebook group to consult the group.
- Charities/Volunteering activities presented by Cherry
Cherry has been working on her proposed charities and volunteering activities.
Congress is allowed to donate directly to charities such as CBC, Unite Without Border, etc. Congress can also choose to share other existing fundraisers to the MSU Facebook group, as personal fundraisers require fees to create.
She will update MariWork with more volunteer opportunities and make a Facebook post about that.
She would like to organize Shave to Save as an intercollegiate project. Participants will fundraise for their shaving and record their shaving process in the form of videos and text. Cherry will then compile the videos and messages with MBN and post a final video. The final video will be released within the next three weeks.
- Call for nursing volunteers presented by Laurence
Some other COAC colleges’ administration has been instructed to recruit 3-year program nursing students to volunteer in light of the current COVID-19 situation.
Marianopolis College does not offer 3-year vocational training programs and has not been instructed to recruit MSU students. Lab technicians and science teachers who are equipped with transferable skills and knowledge may choose to volunteer but have not been required to do so.
Students can explore other opportunities to help with simpler tasks.
- Mandate integration presented by Michael
Appointed and elected members of the 2020-2021 MSU Congress have been invited to attend future meetings of the 2019-2020 Congress in order to better integrate into their respective mandates. All current members, especially those holding a second-year position, are encouraged to meet with their successors and share with them corresponding projects and mandates of the particular position.
Congress members will all write a letter/guide addressing their Congress position and its corresponding mandates to their successors, including their Congress experiences, different aspects of the position, and the information they have accumulated pertaining to the position. This guideline should be drafted as a general guide to all future successors of the position to ensure consistency and continuity. It will be deposited in the corresponding Google Drive folder.
These guidelines will be compiled and sent to Trudy.
- Advocacy projects update presented by Michael
Michael has been focusing on responding to student complaints. He is still working on the CongressLive videos.
- School sweaters
The MSU merch sweater initiative will be resumed next year as it would be logistically difficult to organize given the current situation and more expensive to ship.
- Average survey
He will combine some other questions regarding feedback on other Congress’ new initiatives, such as its Instagram account.
- Mental health survey
Michael has decided not to repost the survey and is currently working on the presentation of the obtained results to the administration.
- Constitutional review
Michael proposes to reformulate the MSU Constitution in a more fundamental manner. All details will be included alternatively in the Club Bylaws. The Constitutional Review Committee will start working on that.
- Facebook Group presented by Michael
MSU Congress has been trying its best to respond to student concerns and complaints as soon as possible. A lot of people expressed frustration about Marianopolis not implementing the pass-fail system. However, the MSU Congress is not able to make a decision regarding this matter; the college administration is required to follow the ministry’s directives, which discourage the implementation of such grading systems. The regular updates posted by the President, with previous hyperlinks of previous posts, will be pinned in the MSU Facebook group. Additionally, Congress will consider addressing important matters, such as the pass-fail system, in separate posts on the MSU Facebook group.
Ying C. will create a COVID-19 update information page on the MSU website, with all received student questions answered according to the college’s latest information in a Q&A format.
Congress has agreed to refrain from hosting Q&A sessions as the situation is changing constantly and no final decisions can be made. Students will be encouraged to refer to the MSU website’s COVID-19 information page.
- Marifilms competition presented by Michael
The poster of the competition has been finished and will be posted on Facebook and Instagram. Winners will be granted prizes of Amazon gift cards, worth $20, $15, and $10. The competition will last two weeks. Submissions will be collected in the form of Google drive links and sent to MariFilms’ email account.
On a side note, Congress agrees to keep prizes for its online challenges for continuity and to attract people to follow the Instagram account. The prizes will be kept the same. Challenges will be modified to be less skill-based and more doable for the general population.
- G-Suite for clubs presented by Ying G
Ying is proposing to create personalized G-Suite email accounts for MSU clubs, each entitled to 30 GB of storage. MSU can register unlimited accounts as a nonprofit organization thus benefiting many clubs.
Clubs will go through an application process and can pass on the existing account to the next year’s executive team for continuity. Their information stored will be safe as Congress will not be able to access them.
Ying will include related instructions in her guide for future VP.
- MSU App presented by Ying G & Laurence
The Tech Committee has been working on embedding MSU’s event calendar into the MSU app with all Marianopolis events. Clubs can add events to the calendar through their MSU G-Suite accounts. Congress will also be able to upload files, posts, and links.
Currently, the app includes features such as updated MSU COVID-19 information, MariSave, and MariWork. The tech committee is aiming to finish embedding the calendar by this weekend. They are also working closely with Austin Huang to implement the shuttle bus tracker.
Ying will consult the coordinators on what they would like to add to the app.
Congress will dedicate a post to those who have helped create the MSU app once finished.
- Discussing projects during Congress meeting presented by Ying G
Congress meetings should be conducted as effectively as possible. To avoid lengthy meetings points addressing specific people can be communicated outside of the general meetings, if necessary.
- Coffeehouse presented by Laurence
Amanda, Ying C., and Andrew will help with planning.
- MSecrets Affairs presented by Trudy
Although not clearly written, the Coordinator of Advocacy assumes the responsibility of overlooking content posted on MSecrets. This communication platform is tricky for the administration to manage.
However, Congress is responsible for ensuring that students are aware of the resources that they may access and that they do receive as much help as possible when needed.
Motion to adjourn – Passed (unanimously)
This meeting was adjourned at 5:40 P.M.
Total duration: 1 hour and 25 minutes