Student Governance & You: Engagement at all levels of Centennial College

 

Learn more about CCSAI, the student government at Centennial College; the role it plays in these crucial years of your life, and how you can have your voice heard.

Student government can seem to be a bit of a misnomer. After all, students go to college, take their classes, graduate, and that’s about it, right?

Not quite. Student government is an essential part of any educational institution. In fact, it’s not dissimilar to actual government, labour unions, or a professional guild. Much like the government, student associations pass bylaws, amplify student voices, work on institutional regulations, and contribute to a vibrant, diverse, and inclusive campus life.

“An organisation for students, by students.”

Most student government work happens behind the scenes. It could be little things; things you wouldn’t even notice, like the water fountains having the ideal pressure. They could be fun things, like a carnival. Or they could be big things, like ensuring all students have equitable access to a world-class education. The impact of student government goes far beyond the institution itself, affecting the lives of faculty and students alike.

Here, we have the Centennial College Students Association Inc. (CCSAI), an organisation for the students, by the students. CCSAI represents and advocates for students, giving them a voice in all levels of college decisions; helping foster a sense of belonging, ownership, and community. It also provides support to students, organises events, cultivates community engagement, and provides opportunities for students to develop their leadership and advocacy skills.

At Centennial, we have a diverse student body, with a wide range of concerns, aspirations, and interests. By giving voice to these concerns, CCSAI also allows students to have a say in decisions affecting all levels of college life. Be it appeals for grades, unsafe practices, accessibility needs, or financial assistance, CCSAI works to support our students. Student government is also a key part of university culture, setting the tone and approach of an entire cohort. By organising events, drives, and community engagement activities, CCSAI helps students make lifelong friendships and invaluable connections.

“By giving voice to … a diverse student body, with a wide range of concerns, aspirations and interests.”

Furthermore, through CCSAI, students have the opportunity to be involved in the larger community – through service projects, sporting/cultural events, and leadership opportunities both on and off campus. Among these are roles on the CCSAI board of directors!

The CCSAI board consists of a President and 5 Vice-Presidents; one from each of Progress, Ashtonbee, Morningside, Story Arts & Downsview. These positions are elected democratically and require a minimum quorum of students to ensure fair and accurate representation. As members of the board, you would participate in strategic planning reviews, by-law development, student advocacy & communication, oversee CCSAI’s executive arm, and take part in professional development. To learn more about available election positions, register for our information session on November 24th, from 17:30 to 19:30. Here, you’ll be able to connect with the current CCSAI board and learn more about the individual positions, their responsibilities, and the opportunities available for engagement throughout the academic year.

At Centennial, CCSAI is more than just a group of your peers; it is part of the very fabric of college life. If you’re a student, consider attending the information sessions and getting involved with student governance. If not governance, there are a variety of roles and positions available throughout the year, along with opportunities to have your concerns and feedback heard by the Board of Directors. College is supposed to make up the best years of your life. That’s only possible if you get out there and make your voice heard. Get involved in student government and make sure these years are the very best, for yourself, for your peers, and for Centennial!

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