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AJ Jaruga

EC Candidate for President

Hello, fellow students!

My name is AJ Jaruga, and I am running for the position of NAITSA President. First off, I would like to say a big thank you to all students for giving me the opportunity to serve as your Vice President External this past year.

During my five years at NAIT, I’ve experienced many different classes, instructors, projects and events. As a result, I have a comprehensive understanding of the needs of a NAIT student and I feel prepared to represent the student body. My time as VP External has given me the ability to learn to create lasting relationships, advocate appropriately, and communicate effectively. These are three skills I intend to use to ensure that the NAIT students have a voice.

Over this past year, our team alongside NAITSA staff has had the pleasure of further enhancing the experience of a student at NAIT. Our major accomplishments include:

  1. Securing fall break for students starting fall 2021: This has been an ongoing request by students that many previous NAITSA executives put in countless hours of work in on. Our team continued to work on this initiative this year resulting in securing a fall break.
  2. Creation of Executive Council Engagement Events: In my campaign last year, I made a promise to students to create an easy line of communication to effectively understand needs and concerns. This year our team and I created and hosted events to directly engage with students, which allowed us to reach over 750 students (and counting)!
  3. Creation of the SOS campaign: After the government’s 2019 budget was released, our team created the SOS campaign. We have been asking students to give us feedback regarding their worries, concerns, and questions about this budget to ensure we understood their needs. These ideas are currently being brought forward to NAIT administration and the Government of Alberta. Our team has frequently met with different government officials and NAIT administration members to advocate for students’ best interests.

As President, it will be my goal to continue advocating for Open Educational Resources, which are a more affordable and accessible alternative to textbooks. I will also continue to advocate for more mental health supports on campus and the continuation of the mental health grant. Student mental health must be a priority for the government and for NAIT to ensure the success and well-being of students. Another issue that needs continuous advocacy is for student study space. There is not enough of it on campus and I will work hard with my fellow executive team to ensure solutions are being brought forward to solve this critical issue. These are the concerns I have heard from students constantly, and these are the issues I plan to continue to address, should you allow me the opportunity to be your student President.

Last year I campaigned on promises and delivered results. I will do this again if given the opportunity to represent you. Vote AJ for President and choose to be heard.