Who is URSU? Hannah Tait (she/her) URSU President

Hannah Tait (she/her) URSU President smiles at the camera while indoors on the second floor of the Riddell Centre at the University of Regina main campus.

Hannah Tait (she/her) URSU President smiles at the camera while indoors on the second floor of the Riddell Centre at the University of Regina main campus.

What does your work week usually involve?

Every week is very different but I spend a lot of time doing research, speaking to members, and communicating with stakeholders about the needs of students. 

What year of study are you in currently and in which faculty are you enrolled?

I am in my fourth year of university enrolled concurrently in Business Administration and Political Science.

What would you like to do as an occupation in the future?

I do not have a specific position in mind but I hope to have a job where I make positive contributions to the community, get to use my problem-solving skills, and get to learn new things constantly.

How will this position help you in that field in the future and right now?

Being President will help me learn how to better balance the needs of so many people and how to make lasting changes in large institutions.

How does your work benefit the students of the University of Regina and its Federated Colleges? How does it benefit the community?

Having student representation in decision-making ensures that the administration considers our valuable perspectives and ideas to shape our learning environment. Universities exist for the pursuit of knowledge and learning. I want to ensure each student is supported and empowered in that journey.

What do you like the most about your position?

I get to meet so many new people and learn so many new things every single day. Every day I wake up and am excited. This position is so dynamic and multifaceted that every day is different. I have been in many customer service positions in the past and I like to bring that experience to the role of President. My position means I get to help people on an individual level, and a community level. There is a lot of satisfaction knowing I made a big or small difference in someone’s life. 

What do you like most about working at URSU?

My colleagues are some of the most passionate and hardworking people I have ever met. My fellow executives really inspire me to work harder and smarter. The staff is always there to support the vision and goals. The work environment has been great in supporting me in representing and advocating for students.

What are the biggest challenges or obstacles?

I only have one year to do all the things I hope to accomplish. I only have 10 months left now. The university administration and government are huge, established, well-staffed organizations so the challenges URSU faces feel daunting. In the vast majority of meetings, I am the youngest and least experienced person, so I am playing catch up. I am also working on behalf of over 17,000 student members, so it is a lot of pressure to make sure that every single member is represented and heard. 

Why did you run for a position in the Students’ Union?

There were a few really influential things that helped me decide to run for President. I noticed that there was not very much female representation within the executive committee in the past. Having diverse perspectives in leadership is very important for URSU. I have had the support of URSU in the past with projects and initiatives, and I wanted to make sure even more students have these opportunities. Finally, students today are going to be dealing with some of the biggest challenges ever facing humanity. I see higher education and community building as the best way to set my generation up for success. I want more people to be able to access education and be part of a community.

How do you want to help students?

I have a lot of ideas and plans but a few of the big things are to establish safeguards for students rights in the online learning environment, lower the costs of education, increase member leadership development, advocate on behalf of students that face social challenges, and build better relationships with our members and external stakeholders. 

What are your plans to achieve this?

I need to do lots of research to make sure the solutions are actionable and realistic. I also need to plan and organize looking at the long term. Member and board engagement will be very important to make solutions really fit. More partnerships will help a lot too. I am only one person, so I see the President’s job is to delegate tasks to the best-suited people to get the job done and empower more people to make a difference. 

How can students help?

Students should get involved through our many programs and services. Students are strongly encouraged to come to board meetings and to interact frequently to determine the direction of the union. Join the board in the by-election, join a committee or volunteer with URSU. Our sole focus is making our members’ experience in university be the best it possibly can be, so we need your input!

For more information on the URSU Executive Committee, please visit: https://www.ursu.ca/governance/executive-committee/

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