September 12, 2011

Introducing the new President of Amnesty International Mount Allison Advait Vij

Over the last month I've done a lot of thinking about the future of Amnesty International at Mount Allison (AI Mount Allison). I had a discussion with another engaging and motivated student who happens to be your next President of AI Mount Allison.

Over the summer I was offered the opportunity to continue working at the Communications Office at Mount Allison. I readily accepted the 8-month part-time extension of what had been an amazing summer internship but was left with the realization that I would have less time and energy for being president of Amnesty. I could either keep the title and do an adequate job at something that is incredibly important to me or find a more suitable replacement.

Although I had done a lot of prep work over the summer (undergoing training at HRC/AGM in Montreal, planning group activities, and beginning to organize a speaker on campus) I decided that I couldn't in good faith keep a title reserved for someone with enough time and energy to spearhead a newly-born group on campus when I myself could not commit the necessary time to the cause during the school year. I contacted potential replacements and eventually discussed the potential role with a strong candidate. He demonstrated energy and enthusiasm for the group when I initially asked him to join as events coordinator and rose to a new level of commitment when I decided he was more than fit for the role and he accepted the position of President.

At the time I was confident that our new president would do a great job in the lead role and everything since then has convinced me he's prepared for it. From spending the entire four hours helping to recruit new members at SACtivities Fair to meeting preparation, event planning, and conflict resolution afterwards he has demonstrated a level of maturity and commitment I've seen in few others at this school. While it was with great regret that I made the decision to step down as President it is with greater optimism for the group that I announce that Advait Vij will lead the group for this upcoming academic year.

I will remain on the group's executive as Public Relations Coordinator and help organize a still-to-be-confirmed guest speaker's visit to campus and act as spokesperson for the group on and offline but Advait, in consultation with the executive, will be tasked with managing the group and making the major decisions about the group's activities. At the fair we had over 110 people sign up to be active members of the group and that makes me very excited to be a part of this important campus group and confirms my optimism about the groups upcoming success. I can think of no better a leader for the group this year (myself included) than our new President Advait Vij.

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Geoff Campbell
Former President and Current Public Relations Coordinator, Amnesty International Mount Allison