See http://www.ausu.org/election/candidates.php for a list of all of the candidates.

How did you first become aware of AUSU Council?

While I was looking for a study companion, the idea of creating a club for student moms came to me. Since then, I got to know many council members and started working on the club with them, which made me aware of not only the council but also that it has been doing an excellent job.

Why do you want to be a part of council in 2004?

To gain experience by giving enthusiasm.

Tell me a little about your experience with distance education: what have you found hardest, or most rewarding, about distance study.

Heading for a Marketing degree and being a full time mother are not easy, but fulfilling. The hardest thing I found was having to organize my study materials and think through issues mostly on my own. But this was where I was rewarded with happiness and confidence after all, after working it out.

What work or life experience(s) have you had that you feel will be particularly valuable to you in working with council?

My multi-culture background (originally from China) has allowed me to understand other people’s perspective and my being a mother has made me sensitive to other’s needs.

Is there one, most important thing that you want to do for AU students as a member of council?

Increase connections among students is the most important thing to do in a distant education school. This requires creativity, which can be seen in me as an idea-generator. Ideas can fail after further discussion, but nothing can be achieved without ideas.

If someone were to ask you why they should choose to attend AU, over other universities, what would you tell them?

Athabasca University is not only for those people who are housebound like me with 2 young children or too busy to attend full-time, like Ralph Klein, but is also the wave of the future. Aside from the convenience, the discipline and the organizational skills developed by self-directed study will give graduates an edge in today’s career environment.

Working with AUSU council means working with a group. What do you see as the benefits and/or disadvantages of working as a part of a large group or board, rather than as an individual.

The old adage that two heads are better than one, applies many-fold in a group. Of course there is also a need for visionaries, people who have a clear vision of what should be, but the give-and-take of ideas and objective, constructive criticism is a valued and valuable part of our social and political systems, which can only serve to improve the ideas.

What’s your hobby?

I love writing and comic-drawing which allow me to share with others the bitter-sweetness of the world around me. I have been writing and drawing for Chinese magazines and once for the AUSU newsletter.

See the February 25th (v12 i08) edition of The Voice for interviews with candidates Lonita Fraser, Melanie Gray, and Stacey Steele.

The pdf version of this issue is available at: http://www.ausu.org/voice/pdf/pdflist.php

The interviews are also available online at:
Lonita Fraser: http://www.ausu.org/voice/articles/articledisplay.php?ART=2597
Melanie Gray: http://www.ausu.org/voice/articles/articledisplay.php?ART=2598
Stacey Steele: http://www.ausu.org/voice/articles/articledisplay.php?ART=2599