Sara Malhotra, a third-year Political Science and Economics student, is running for Vice-President Internal with the Students United slate. Her position is one of two contested executive races.

Malhotra is the Associate to the UTMSU Vice-President External and the VP External of UTM’s Undergraduate Economics Council. In a statement to The Varsity, Malhotra wrote that she was “passionate about student activism,” and as an international student, she envisions herself “creating a safer and more inclusive space.”

Malhotra also recently ran to be on the UTM Campus Council. The results of that election will be released on April 8.

On any potential bylaw changes or additions, Malhotra said that she would concentrate on helping members of the UTMSU understand them first before soliciting direction on anything new. “I want to focus more on ensuring that members know where to access them and how to democratically participate in the union,” she wrote.

Regarding the looming separation of the UTMSU and the University of Toronto Students’ Union and the ongoing discussion on how to adequately provide a health and dental plan to members following the divorce, Malhotra said that she would support a request for a proposals process “in order to solicit a new health and dental plan that is affordable and all-encompassing of services that students need.”

Another challenge the incoming executive will face is the Ford government’s Student Choice Initiative, which will give students the chance to opt out of certain, non-essential incidental fees, including parts of student union levies.

“If the UTMSU’s operating budget is cut dramatically we want to ensure that students have a say in how we should repurpose the budget,” Malhotra wrote. “We can also look to external avenues for funding that are ethical and that align with UTM student priorities. For example, we can look to the Mississauga Food Bank to help support the UTMSU Food Center.”

Editor’s Note (March 14, 8:31 pm): An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that Malhotra lost the race for UTM Campus Council. In fact, the results have not been released yet, therefore Malhotra is still in the running for the election. The Varsity regrets the error.