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SCSU candidate profiles: Vice-President Campus Life

Alyssia Fernandes, UNIFY UTSC and Devesh Juneja, INSPIRE UTSC
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COURTESY OF ALYSSIA FERNANDES AND DEVESH JUNEJA
COURTESY OF ALYSSIA FERNANDES AND DEVESH JUNEJA

Devesh Juneja, INSPIRE UTSC

Devesh Juneja is a fourth-year student majoring in philosophy with a double minor in public law and sociology. He is running for the vice-president campus life position at the Scarborough Campus Students’ Union (SCSU) on the INSPIRE UTSC slate, of which he is the only executive candidate. 

Juneja has been involved with the SCSU since his first year at UTSC. He began as a first-year director, and he is now the director of philosophy.

Juneja is currently the president of Hindu Students’ Council at UTSC, and the vice-president of the UTSC Indian Students Association. In an email to The Varsity, Juneja explained that, through his involvement in these clubs, he has learned “to lead students through many different events.” Juneja believes that his extensive involvement on campus and connections with the UTSC community are his biggest strengths and have prepared him for the role of vice-president campus life. 

Juneja believes that “[the SCSU] slowly keeps losing the respect of its students.” He pledges to shift the union’s focus from politics back to the student body. “I want the student body to know the amazing work SCSU does, and not only that I want SCSU to be a place where real changes happens in real time,” wrote Juneja.

He asserted that his leadership skills and connection to the student body make him a deserving and suitable candidate for the position. “I believe I am the right candidate for VP Campus Life to bring back the UTSC atmosphere I fell in love with,” Juneja wrote in his platform.

Alyssa Fernandes, UNIFY UTSC

Alyssia Fernandes is a third-year political science and international development student, who is running for vice-president campus life of the SCSU on the UNIFY UTSC slate. 

Fernandes has worked with the SCSU as the orientation coordinator for the first fully virtual Frosh Week in 2020. She also served as the president’s associate this year. She has been involved in student activities in high school such as fundraising and working with students. In an interview with The Varsity, Fernandes said that these experiences will help her in doing “the very best as [vice-president] campus life to make sure that students are getting the best out of their university experience.”

If elected, Fernandes committed to organizing a free concert for students at the beginning of the year, and improving clubs funding, including a $150 subsidy for gatherings at the 1265 Bistro. She also plans to host a “choose your program” fair with first- and upper-year students to foster networking and engagement. 

She also told The Varsity that one of her goals is to alleviate student’s pressure in dealing with the pandemic and online learning. “I think [it’s] really important being [vice-president] campus life to acknowledge that… everyone’s walk of life is so diverse,” said Fernandes. 

The voting period for the SCSU elections is being held from March 1–3.