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March 7, 2011 | by  | in News |
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Eye on Exec

There were balloons everywhere, giving the room a party atmosphere it didn’t deserve. Exhaustion and near-silence prevailed until a case of lukewarm Mountain Dew was passed around, which at the very least gave those present something to cry into.

Differences from last year were immediately noticeable—all the work reports were both formatted correctly and readable. Seamus managed to clock in at three pages and 100 working hours. Clubs Officer Jeremy Peters came second with 64.

Others had busied themselves with poster/diary bag-stuffing linework, but had still managed to find room for their core responsibilities. Education Vice-President Bridie Hood is in the process of planning a new Class Rep training intake. Welfare Vice-President Asher Emanuel took the chance to learn about both the Wellington City Mission’s management structure as well as his own role, which he discussed with Student Finance. Administration Vice-President Daniel Wilson had a mystifying line in his work report that described “finalising role for PricewaterhouseCoopers at Victoria”. No clues yet as to whether this will involve either a merger, blood-debt, or sorcery.
Seamus summed up the death-march atmosphere, describing O Week as “really good in terms of people helping out and stuff”. Within 30 minutes, the meeting had rolled around to clubs’ budgeting discussion.

First to the block were Felix and William, representing the Science Society. The Science Society registered as a rep group in 2010 at the suggestion of then-Admin VP Richard Carr “as a joke”, and to unite the 5,000 plus students at Victoria who are studying different science disciplines. William outlined the various expenses involved in the operation of a quality representative group, and emphasised their desire for a self-sufficient business model.

Executive members were impressed by the application’s modest figure of $7,615 and the Society’s comprehensive breakdown of last year’s costs, which they provided on (most importantly) the correct form. Welfare Officer Ta’ase Vaoga assured the rest of the group of William’s “very entrepreneurial” nature based on her experience babysitting him.

Following the acceptance of the Science Society’s budget, Stephen Jackson of UniQ presented a very straightforward $5,400 budget focused around several large events later in the year. UniQ’s was the only budget that came in less (by about $1,500) than the previous year. Costs associated with the UniQ national conference in Hamilton were included in the bill, which Stephen claimed would help create a national, connected presence. The Traffic Light Party and Pride Week were back on the books, with extra provision made for the Trans Group.

A tentative allowance was made for GLBT @ Vic Law, which is currently unincorporated into UniQ. Stephen expressed his desire to strengthen ties between the organisations and to become affiliated, assuming they would be interested in the extra funding. The budget was approved in full, with Seamus reflecting on the previous financial successes of the Traffic Light Party and Pride Week.
Following the blitzkrieg efficiency of the Science Group and UniQ, the Executive was left with 20 minutes’ leeway to discuss Urgent General Business, which consisted of Seamus politely reminding all present that work reports were due at 12 o’ clock sharp on Friday, and that that detail was important as the reports are publicly shared on the VUWSA website.

Aleisha Pile of the Architecture and Design School rep group STUDiO was goin’ up for the biggest bucks, representing probably the broadest swathe of the student population. Aleisha stressed that those studying at the Te Aro campus often “just live and breathe what they study,” and that the $41,020 would go towards creating strong social and academic networks.

STUDiO’s proposed budget was $41,020, an increase of $16,000 on 2010’s. This was almost solely attributable to the “super-tute” concept, which would see a series of national and international lecturers visit Victoria to share their knowledge. The executive was unconvinced that enough effort (i.e., any) had been made to contact the Design or Architecture faculties to fund these lectures, and suggested that any students who would wish to attend international design competitions could do so under a travel grant. An adjusted budget of $26,620 was moved, seconded and carried.

No arguments. No punch-ups. An hour and a half long. A bit like a feature-length kid’s movie written by Aaron Sorkin on downers.

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Lewis has been playing videogames since his family's PC Direct "workstation" in early 1996. He spends his spare time reading political blogs, working and welcoming complaints and suggestions.

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