We reached out to all of your candidates to help you get to know the person you’re casting your vote for. While not all candidates got back to us, a few shared their plans for the 2021 SRC.

Voting is open until Monday (12 October) next week, so check your student emails to find a link to vote!

International Student Representative nominees

Siljo Samuel

Siljo Samuel

Summary:

  • Advocate for the interests and needs of all international students at UC, including introducing activities related to career development and mental health.
  • Act as a bridge of communication between the university and international students and promote cross-cultural awareness and interactions at UC.
  • Ensure that international students have access to help and support.

I am in my first year studying a Masters in Juris Doctor and the Education Officer at the Canberra Law Students’ Society. I completed my schooling in Bahrain and completed my undergrad in India.

Why you are running for the SRC?

I am running for the SRC because I believe I can advocate for the interests and serve the needs of all the international students at UC. I would like to act as a bridge of communication between the University and International students. I would ensure that all the help and support is provided for all international students.

What is your vision and why are you the best candidate for the position?

My vision is to promote cross-cultural awareness and interactions at UC. I would like the international students to be engaged with various events and activities. I would like to ensure international students can access career-oriented workshops and seminars, with basics like how to build your CV to the career prospects in your respective fields. Additionally, I would like to see mental health workshops and weekly meet up sessions made available for international students.

Through my international upbringing, I believe I have the exemplary interpersonal and communication skills and flexibility to enable me to adapt with people of diverse backgrounds and succeed in this role.

Zirui Zhao

Zirui Zhao

Summary:

  • Assist international students through difficult times.
  • Build harmony between international students and locals.
  • Help new arrivals transition into the Australian culture and environment at UC.

My name is Zirui Zhao and I am currently in the second semester of my Bachelor of IT and Commerce. My favourite sport is badminton (I am also hoping to run for the UC badminton club) and I also enjoy playing the flute. My interests also extend to the flute, which is my favourite hobby. However, I am passionate about self-development and self-improvement. I am always looking to meet new friends, love chatting with others, self-improvement and helping others with what I have learned.

Why are you running for the SRC?

I still remember what it felt like when I first stepped into a new university environment. Australia has a very diverse culture with different cultural backgrounds that international students need to adapt to, an experience which is always hard when you come from overseas. I want to help the students that are new to Canberra and the University of Canberra navigate this difficult transition. Additionally, I want to assist them to mix in with this multi-cultural environment and work in harmony with the locals. The SRC position will also enable me to gain experience, practice my management skill, and meet new people. These will help me in my future career.

What is your vision and why are you the best candidate?

I am the best candidate because I am an international student myself who is keen to help others, especially the students from overseas. This year is the sixth year I lived in Canberra, I know most of the things around the ACT, and I am fluent in both English and Chinese. These give me some advantages to communicate with international students and provide them with a hand when they need it. I want to share my experience living in a strange environment and since I am still relatively new, I can relate to what new students may struggle with arriving at UC. My goal is to assist international students through difficult times, build harmony with locals and help new arrivals mix in with the brand new environment of the university.

Arjun Sudhilal

Arjun Sudhilal

Summary:

  • Help the SRC to interact more closely with students to make decisions that will help people who may otherwise be ignored.
  • Ensure everyone feels safe having an opinion about something and having it heard. 
  • Reach out, listen and understand the students at UC.

My name is Arjun, a student with experience from drastically different types of schooling. As a result, I have gained a broader perspective and expanded my learning across film-making, photography and drawing. My creative outlook also ties into my degree, a Bachelor of Communication and Media. I love interacting with people and understanding them, which is partly why I am running for this role.  

Why are you running for the SRC?

I have always felt that having a voice about our education is an important aspect of schooling and feedback has the power to make experiences better for everyone. In the places I’ve studied, I have seen what fear can do to reduce student voices and so I have a personal motivation to make sure every person can be heard. Additionally, I believe following through is just as important as listening to students and considering what they want. Any contribution I can make to raising the voice of students is a win in my book. 

What is your vision and why are you the best candidate?

My vision is to have the SRC interact more closely with students to make decisions that will help people who may otherwise be ignored. I believe that helping everyone starts with reaching out to people. Therefore, it will be my priority to make sure that I can help as many peers as I can. I feel that I am suited well for this position due to my upbringing, and experience seeing the impact of student voices going unheard. This motivates me to make sure everyone feels safe having an opinion about something and having it heard. 

Mustafa Ewazi

Mustafa Ewazi

Summary

  • Increase support for all international students at UC.
  • Oppose the use of Proctorio.
  • Fight for international students to be valued at UC.

Many of you probably know me best for my continued fight for equality and justice. For those who don’t know me, I’m Mustafa Ewazi. From the first day I arrived at UC, I knew I wanted to become more involved.

From serving in leadership roles, as the President of UC Refugee Action Club and the Competitions Director at Canberra Law Students’ Society, I try to make UC an even better place than it already is.

I am studying Bachelor of Laws (LLB) and look forward to completing my Honours (thesis) on the age of criminal responsibility in Australia. Aside from studying, I love to play soccer and go hiking with friends.

Why you are running for the SRC?

The First Semester has been disappointing and frustrating for all of us with UC’s handling of COVID-19 and the harsh introduction of Proctorio with no student support. I can feel students’ disappointment and frustration, especially from the international students who aren’t native speakers.

During an unexpected time, international students are struggling the most and desperate for help. I understand how difficult it is to study abroad with minimum support. As second-semester exams approach, let me ensure that you don’t go through Proctorio again and you have all the necessary support. This is what drives me to fight for a better change and why I have decided to run for the International Students Representative position in this election.

What is your goal or vision and why are you the best candidate for the position?

My goal is to increase support for all international students at UC. Over the past semester, international students have been neglected. From our universities to local cafes, we know how much the international students in Australia contribute to society. The unexpected circumstances caused by COVID-19 have meant these students are being left out, not only by the government but also by universities. Now more than ever, it is time for universities including UC to value international students. This is what makes me the best candidate for the position – my passion, interest, and empathy for all international students at UC.

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