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UTSU candidate profiles: Vice-President Student Life

Elizabeth Shechtman, Paavni Grover
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Elizabeth Shechtman and Paavni Grover. JADINE NGAN/THE VARSITY, COURTESY OF PAAVNI GROVER
Elizabeth Shechtman and Paavni Grover. JADINE NGAN/THE VARSITY, COURTESY OF PAAVNI GROVER

Elizabeth Shechtman

Elizabeth Shechtman, a first-year student hoping to major in history and economics, is running for vice-president, student life of the University of Toronto Students’ Union (UTSU). Shechtman previously founded a nonprofit that raises money for animals around the Guelph region, and worked for The Varsity as an associate news editor. 

One problem Shechtman sees is that students do not know what is going on around campus. If elected, Shechtman wants to increase transparency around how students can join clubs, provide more ability for students to view which clubs currently exist on campus, and increase accessibility at UTSU-run events. 

Shechtman also hopes that an in-person orientation will return next year. She hopes to make orientation more interactive and lower the cost for students, possibly “[raising] money or [getting] some sort of funding for orientation for incoming freshmen.”

Students are “really worried that they’re not gonna be able to take time away from their education,” said Shechtman in an interview with The Varsity. “And I think that that’s such a misinterpretation of what the university life experience should be.”

Paavni Grover

Paavni Grover, a second-year student in economics, statistics, and international relations, is also running for the position. She currently serves as an executive for the Arts & Science Students’ Union (ASSU) and was previously a first-year representative for the Arts and Science Council. 

In an email to The Varsity, Grover wrote, “I am super passionate about advocating for students’ rights and that’s the reason I’ve been a part of ASSU for the past two years.”

Grover hopes to plan interesting events and wrote that her previous work has given her insight into “how and where to find the right resources from so it will help students navigate through their issues and questions.”

Grover also hopes to hold more in-person events should COVID-19 protocols allow, increase engagement with additional extracurricular options, and develop more career opportunities. 

Disclosure: Elizabeth Shechtman was an Associate News Editor for The Varsity during the 2021–2022 school year. 

The voting period for the UTSU elections is from March 23–27. The candidates debate is scheduled for Tuesday, March 22 at 6:00 pm.