By Ed Veilleux
For Charlie Andrews, stepping into the SGA president office after winning the spring election wasn’t too much of a stretch.
“Getting into the office and starting the job was very easy; I’ve been active with the SGA/ AGE for four years and I have experience working in the office, therefore, I already knew what to expect when coming into office due to my past volunteer and work experiences with the SGA/ AGE,” Andrews said.
Andrews is familiar with Laurentian, having completed his Bachelor of Arts at the university.
Originally from St. Johns, Newfoundland, Andrews has always been involved in extracurricular activity, including cadets, concert/jazz band and constant volunteering in the community.
Although the office was familiar to Andrews, the job of president has opened his eyes and has taught him much so far, he says.
“Being president has been such a learning experience in terms of ethics, communication, team work, and time management. I can’t express enough how I really enjoy helping the students achieve their goals academically and to ensure they have a wonderful experience at Laurentian University – being an SGA/AGE student must be a privilege and the office team had been working hard to ensure this is achieved.”
Andrews prides himself on working a non-typical schedule as SGA president, working “24/7” to help students, if need be. On a typical day, Andrews is answering emails or Facebook messages from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m., in between attending meetings, touching base with the office to keep things on track and communicating with external parties, such as the media. Andrews also prides himself on helping students through the academic appeal process and through advocacy meetings.
Andrews says he is unique from past presidents for a variety of reasons, which will benefit students.
“Past presidents were typically social science majors; however, I was a fine arts/humanities major. As a result, I am slightly more creative in terms of past presidents. Also, I am really interested in student appeals and advocacy. This means I enjoy helping students appeal their academic rights.”
He also feels that his “24/7” schedule allows him to be more open to students.
“Another aspect that makes me different is that I am overly dedicated in the sense I will be available to a student in need at anytime. For instance, I’ve connected my email and Facebook to my phone, so if a student needs urgent assistance, I am more than willing to assist. Basically, I don’t work the typical day time job – I work 24/7 if need be. My philosophy is simply ‘students first.’”
In the coming year, students can expect Andrews and the SGA to focus on pub renovations, Art Support events and academic appeals and advocacy.
On the president’s personal agenda is a goal which he feels not many students will understand the importance of.
“I will be working with the office team to re-structure the office internally,” Andrews said. “Many policies are outdated and they need to be updated. The SGA/AGE is an incorporated body… the policies in office need to be upgraded; this is crucial for the future of the association and I will make sure this is completed this year.”
This goal is driven by the president’s love of the association and his love of helping students, he says.
“I love the SGA/AGE and it deserves to be updated (manuals, policy and procedure manual, mission statement, website, pamphlets, constitution etc.).I love the SGA/AGE and I genuinely look forward to being there for the students.”