Tuesday, April 8, 2014
This year has been a whirlwind for Teacher Education’s Student Council President Mark Henshaw since being elected in September. He and his Council have worked hard to deliver the memorable, engaging experience they touted on Election Day, planning and hosting a number of popular events including socials and the EdTalk speaker series.
The six social events were wildly successful, attracting at least two hundred students each, according to Henshaw. Beyond being a great chance for bonding with classmates, the events allowed Council to raise donations for charitable organizations like United Way, which aligned with their goal of making a difference while having fun.
“Socials are important — I think students need to have that outlet to get together and have shared experience and good times, but it’s also important for us to be responsible. We saw the socials as an opportunity to not only have fun, but also as a way to fundraise.”
In the fall term Henshaw and his Council hosted two EdTalks events — 10 to 20-minute talks in the cafeteria exploring the qualities of a good teacher. The first featured grade six student Tyra, who promoted the idea of teachers building strong relationships with their students. The second welcomed Andrew Judge, a representative from the Indigenous Education community who discussed how every student has a unique gift. While they were only able to host two EdTalks this year Henshaw hopes next year’s Council builds on their concept.
“These EdTalks are a great opportunity to put out different ideas from different people who are not your typical administrators, who are not high-profile people, or not from the same stream of thinking that we normally see or listen to,” he said.
While the social and EdTalk events were among the Council’s biggest accomplishments, Henshaw was quick to point out that they were also able to implement a feedback survey, organize the year-end formal event and make major changes to the Program’s constitution and bylaws.
Now that his term is coming to an end Henshaw explained he is happy he took this challenge and is proud of all he and his Council were able to accomplish in this short academic year.
“What I liked most about this process was having the opportunity to meet and talk to a lot of people I wouldn’t normally have the chance to,” he said.
“We set out to really establish a sense of community, both inside and out of the University, and I think we were able to do that this year. I hope next year’s Council will be able to continue some of what we started this year.”