CSA Candidates and Bios

Written by: Sarah Cowan

As the election comes closer to the students, each candidate had the opportunity to make a quick speech as to why they believe they would be a good candidate for the student body.

Here is each candidate, their bios and some highlights from their speech:

President – Matthew McKeever –
My name is Matthew McKeever and I am running for the position of President of the Concordia Arts Union. I am married and my wife and I have two sons. Before returning to University in 2020 I worked in Supply Chain and as a Health and safety professional. In addition to years of experience in negotiating, price and product sourcing, as a National Construction Safety officer I have also developed, maintained and audited company policies as well as health and safety programs. During the last few months I participated in the Arts Union as the VP of Finance and am ready to build upon the hardwork the team has done through the previous year. Thank you for your consideration and good luck to all the candidates.
– One of Matthew’s goals is to develop an online presence and maintain the attraction on those social media sites like Facebook, Instagram and so on.
– McKeever hopes to create different events and help celebrate the students by providing fun activities like paint night, draws and fundraisers. 


Matthew McKeever

President – Brad Dela Cruz
My name is Brad Dela Cruz and I am currently enrolled in the Environmental Health After Degree Program here at Concordia.
I am running for the position of CSA Environmental Health Student Representative because I want to represent the Environmental Health Program which consists of 2 small cohorts (around 15-20 students each), and with such a small group, I want to ensure our voices are Heard.
I am a good candidate for this position because I have experience as the VP Academics, as well as the VP Board of Certification, for the Environmental Health Student Union. Furthermore, I am passionate about preventing illness and injury, promoting well-being, and protecting the health of others.
– One of the main concerns is that all of the students’ voices are being heard.
– Brad is passionate about preventing illness and injuries in others, while also promoting well-being, and protecting the health of others. 
Pic:  https://drive.google.com/file/d/1fYRAlPDVIwrpsfBeXFqxkccJuIHpvOBH/view?usp=sharing

VP Operations – Qusai Murad
Hello, my name is Qusai Murad, I’m a third-year bachelor of management student, and I’m running to be your VP of Operations for the Management Union.
I’m eager to once again help my fellow management students (and all Concordia students) through this position, and I’m looking forward to resume working with the management department. I held the VP of operations position for 2020-2021, I also hold the position of the president of “Concordia’s Self Defence Club” which teaches self-defence through Boxing, Kickboxing, Muay Thai, and various martial arts (before the pandemic), and I’m also a peer coach with students life and learning.
Through this position, I’ll keep on working to make a difference for the students in Concordia and do my best to make their experience a memorable one. Thank you for your consideration
– This young man is eager to help other students and make a difference for the students in Concordia.
– Murad wants to make a difference by creating different workshops and seminars and by providing a good community to the students of Concordia. 

Qusai Murad

VP Marketing – Kaitlyn Skinner
My name is Kaitlyn Skinner, and I am a second-year management student here at Concordia University. My emphasis is marketing, and I have been apart of the Concordia’s student’s association since November as the marketing coordinator. My experience also includes managing social media while I was in high school and for my family company. This experience and my passion for marketing allows me to have an understanding on how to efficiently manage social media accounts and find new ways to get more people interacting with the social media content. I would be a perfect fit for this position because I am extremely outgoing and ready to adapt the styles as social media grows with new trends and more competition. If elected I will focus on making sure the marketing and social media content is informative, entertaining, and interactive.
– Kaitlyn has been a part of Concordia’s student association since November 2020 as the marketing coordinator.
– If Skinner gets elected into this position, she is going to be willing to adapt with anything that gets presented to her, she will do her best to ensure that the social media and marketing will become more interactive, entertaining and also more informative.

Kaitlynn Skinner

President – Brandon Kaiser
I am a passionate individual whose pursuits are not confined to one specific
interest. I am going into my final year of university and when I am not fulfilling my
role as a full-time business student at Concordia, you can find me spending my
hours pursuing music, writing and snowboarding. If elected again to the role of
President, I plan to continue building the Concordia Management community
dedicating my time to ensure all Management students feel heard and valued. I
am excited to incorporate my committed drive for success to my position as the
potential President of the Concordia Management Union.
– Brandon is hoping to get reelected as president and is willing to continue his journey with building the Concordia Management community while dedicating his time to make sure all of the Management students feel welcomed, heard and valued.
– Kaiser is wanting to create more opportunities to help stimulate the students in events that get hosted. He also wanted to provide opportunities to connect with professionals across the country.

Brandon Kaiser

VP Finance – Cassandra Cowan
I am just finishing up my 3d year at Concordia, majoring in Biology and minoring in English. My favourite pastime is playing with my kitties! I am trying my best to be involved at CUE by being a part of the Concordia Commitment, Student Ambassadors, Mental Health Committee, Book Club, CSU as VP Finance, and a Science Representative in the CSA. My goal is to ensure that students at Concordia can obtain success through accessible means in whatever success looks like to them. With what I have learned from these groups and my organizational skills, I would be a good fit for the VP of Finance position.
– She enjoys being involved with Concordia by being a part of the Concordia Commitment, Student Ambassadors, Mental Health Committee, Book Club, CSU as VP Finance, and as a Science Representative in the CSA.
– Cassandra has a desire to increase the student engagement and wants to help promote accessibility to the students.

Cassandra Cowan

VP External – Shaveta Bolina
I am a second year Faculty of Science student (Biology major) and the current VP External for Concordia Science Union.  I am a Registered Nurse and have been volunteering to raising Cardiac health awareness. I  volunteer with Concordia’s Peer Wellness team to provide Concordia with wellness resources.  In addition, I have been actively advocating for community members and volunteered with  organizations like Big Brothers Big Sisters, Roots for Trees, Mustard seed, Flu clinics etc. I feel strongly about student representation and would like to work together with Concordia to  bring COVID safe opportunities for everyone to be a part of. Due to unforeseen future, it is difficult to make any predictions regarding the new academic  year, but I want to be a part of your journey through Concordia during this. I would like to bring my name forward for re-election as your VP External for Concordia’s  Science Union.
– If Shaveta is being reelected she is hoping to make more covid safe events in the fall by hosting more virtual events. A priority of hers is to also have health care a main focus.
– She feels strongly about representing the students and would like to work together with Concordia to bring COVID safe opportunities for everyone to be a part of.

President – Brooke Froment
Hello Concordia students! My name is Brooke Froment and I am running to be your Concordia Science Union President for the upcoming 2021/2022 school year. I am currently in my second year studying as a Biology major and am also a member of the women’s Thunder basketball team. The time I have spent studying and participating in extracurriculars has been remarkable, my favorite memories have been made here at Concordia. I love exploring the outdoors while camping and adventuring in the mountains. I am running as president to nourish and express the values of the science students as a whole to sustain a well-rounded science union. As president, I will be interactive with students by organizing events and I’ll be readily available for any needs and concerns you may experience throughout your studies. Thank you for taking the time to read my article.
– If Froment gets elected president she will try to be interactive with the students by organizing events and be readily available for whenever there is a problem, if there is any to arise.
– She also would try to improve the efficiency of the information that is given to the students, so if there is an event being hosted, Brooke wants to inform the students earlier and even set reminders for the students.

Brooke Froment

President – Shannon Ross
My name is Shannon Ross, and I am a third year Bachelor of Science student entering into my final year of my degree next fall. I have been heavily involved in the CUE community throughout my degree. I am currently a peer coach as well as CSU VP Marketing. As CSU VP Marketing, I have learned an extensive amount about the CSU, and I want to continue to be an advocate for science students at Concordia. As President, my goal would be to ensure that the CSU is providing opportunities for students to connect with our school community. My focus would be on listening to the students that the CSU represents and offering events that encourage involvement, even if they are conducted virtually. I am certain that I have the skills and experience to lead the CSU, and I hope that you will consider voting for me.  
– As President, her goal would be to ensure that the Concordia Science Union is providing different opportunities for students to connect with the school community.
– The focus would be listening to the students that are being represented and offering events that encourage involvement, even if they are conducted virtually.

Shannon Ross

President – Michael Pelzer
My name is Michael Pelzer and I am a first year student at Concordia University, I am clinically diagnosed on the Autism spectrum and am 19 years old currently majoring in chemistry and minoring in business. The reason I want to have such a prestigious role as student president is the desire to have the student’s voices heard. Having such a job to represent the student body is a major responsibility as a student myself, I would be honoured if the students voted me as the best decision. I will work my absolute hardest to ensure that every student at Concordia has a voice and that everything in the budget is in the best interests of the students. I know what it is like to not have a voice, and I want to make sure nobody goes through that during my tenure.
– Pelzer wants to ensure that all of the students’ voices are heard.
– Michael wants to take all voices into consideration and that everything in the budget has the students’ best interest.

Michael Pelzer

General Council

Science Rep – Micheal Pelzer
To whom it may concern,
My name is Michael Pelzer and I am a first year student at Concordia University, I am clinically diagnosed on the Autism spectrum and am 19 years old currently majoring in chemistry and minoring in business. My love for science is the reason why I want to be a representative in the CSA for science, I intend to pursue a career in the sciences. Having this opportunity would allow me to gain more knowledge into the science field and potentially allow me to pursue further knowledge in the fields such as maybe getting a Master’s degree related to some form of science. Having this nomination would be an honour and a privilege to my future career in this field. It might even give me more insight into other potential related career paths in regards to the sciences.
– Pelzer made it evident that he would really enjoy to work to prepare the students for a return to the classes and back to the labs
– He vocalizes how an ideal would be to make the labs more interactive by setting time aside to ensure that the students know the safety and make sure they are given instructions to ensure that each student who goes into a lab is aware of how to operate each lab equipment safely.

Michael Pelzer

Science Rep – Cassandra Cowan
Currently, I am a third-year student at Concordia, majoring in Biology and minoring in English. I really enjoy reading and spending time with my kitties! I try to stay active in the CUE community by being a part of multiple committees and clubs such as the Concordia Commitment, Student Ambassadors, Mental Health Committee, Book Club, CSU as VP Finance Science Representative of the CSA. I want to help ensure that Concordia programs are accessible and diverse to limit any barriers students may face both in life and at school. With my previous experience in this role, I would love to continue in my current positions for the 21/22 school year and serve within the  CSA as a Science Representative.
– Her main goal would be to minimize the barriers between the students and the resources that should be available to students.
– Cassandra Cowan will work to ensure that all students have easy access to all helpful resources.

Cassandra Cowan

Arts Rep – Ashtyn Sample
Hello there Concordia! My name is Ashtyn Sample and I’m a Bachelor of Arts student with a major in Drama and minor in Education. In the past, I was an event chair for my high school’s student council and hope to continue making a difference in student lives through the CSA. I have strong organizational skills, a passion for positivity, and will always do what I can to benefit my peers! I ensure that I will represent all Concordia Arts students equally to the best of my abilities. I thank you for this opportunity.
– Sample vows to work efficiently and effectively to represent each group at Concordia, even if they are not as well known as others
– While having strong leadership skills, she also has leadership experience.

Ashtyn Sample

Arts Rep – Laffat Ahmad
Hi Concordia, my name is Lattaf Ahmad and I am running for the Arts Representative position this year. I am a second year Bachelor of Arts Student majoring in psychology, minoring in sociology with the goal of becoming a counsellor someday. During my first year, I had the opportunity to get involved in a lot of events at our university. some being in person, some online. These events helped me meet some amazing people and gave exposure to new experiences.  So, this year I decided to become a more active member of the community by running in the elections.
I am very passionate about helping others and ensuring that everyone’s voice is heard. If elected I would help enrich the experiences of every student at Concordia.
– This international student is a community oriented man and has been a part of plenty different groups.
– He has great conversational skills and really wants to focus on the mental health aspect in Concordia if Ahmad is to be elected as an Art Representative. 

Laffat Ahmad

Arts Rep – Mitchell Moore
 My name is Mitchell Moore and I am running for the arts representative at our university. I am a religion major with a minor in Indigenous studies. I want to speak on behalf of all students at Concordia. I have worked on mental health initiatives with the city of Edmonton youth council. I would like to support mental health on campus and make it a priority at our school. As someone living with a permanent disability, I hope to represent people that are marginalized in the university. I want to help Concordia and improve the lives of my fellow classmates. Switch to Mitch.
– Michael Moore is community oriented and makes a strong statement about mental health.
– Moore would like to bring more attention to the aspect of mental health to the students of Concordia.

Mitchell Moore

Executive Coucil

President – James Wakelin

Hello Concordia! My name is James Wakelin, and I am honored to be given the chance to be running for the President of the Concordia Student Association (CSA). I am currently completing a Dual degree Bachelor of Management and Bachelor of Science in Chemistry.

With previous experience as a restaurant manager, and health care aide I have gained many useful skills that will translate to the position of president of the CSA in order to serve the student body. I was also lucky enough to represent Concordia University of Edmonton as an international student during my time studying in Beijing, China. I believe that my unique set of skills and characteristics will match this position allowing myself to support Concordia, and all the students as they strive for excellence. Thank you for nominating me for this position, and I look forward to the opportunity.
–  While being an international student, he has a passion to help others and wants to ensure that he can help all of the student’s voices be heard.
– James wants to be a representative for the students and ensure that all of the students are taken care of. 
Pic:  https://drive.google.com/file/d/1xAWtybYMPxUCtDUOVZdzK911wZn_9-T1/view?usp=sharing

VP Finance – Navleen Kaur

Hey Concordia,My name is Navleen Kaur and I am a third-year student enrolled in Bachelor of Management degree. I am an international student in Canada. I have participated in various roles on the campus starting as a peer tutor to teaching assistant and peer support coach and now working my way as Vice president of Finance.

I love to knit as a hobby, and I love to talk. Feel free to email me or text me if you want to chat. I am very excited to get more involved with the CUE community. It will be my pleasure to enhance your student experience at CUE. Looking forward to a great year!
–  If Navleen was to be elected VP Finance, she would like to help provide more resources to the different clubs so they can host more events.
– Kaur would like to organize more events for the clubs and she vows to be present for each club, that is her priority.

Navleen Kaur

VP Academic – Ellis Connelly

Hey CUE, my name is Ellis Connelly and I’d love to be your VP Academic for the 2021/2022 year! I am entering my third year as a Bachelor of Arts student, hoping to move on to Education afterwards. I’d be a great VP Academic because I have been heavily involved with the CSA during my two years at Concordia, whether that be attending or volunteering at events throughout the year. I’d be a great fit for this leadership role due to my organizational skills, detail-oriented attitude, and teamwork skills. Alongside this, I also have experience in many leadership positions. As your VP Academic, I will continuously ensure that all students on campus are supported and properly represented. I love being a Concordia student, and I hope I’m able to ensure similar experiences for current and future students at Concordia!  
– Ellis Connelly vows to be a voice for the student body and to get more open educational resources, especially with the world currently being in a pandemic and the public having reduced work and reduced finances.
– Connelly would like to try and get students back in the classroom setting, despite the student body being stuck between the “in class vs online” situation.


Ellis Connelly

VP Academic – Mayrane Lope

Hi Concordia! My name is Mayrane and I’m running to be the VP Academic of CSA.
I’m in the fourth year of my BA in Psychology – Applied Emphasis here at CUE and also have other diplomas: in Management and in Graphic Design. Since I started at CUE, I’ve been involved in a couple of different things such as the Psychology Club, Peer Coach and Peer Support, where I’m one a team lead. I’m Brazilian and have been in Canada for a little more than three years and let’s say that…I’m a little older than a lot of the students here. My diverse professional background, extensive volunteer experience and leadership skills definitely help, but it’s my life experience that allows me to better serve you, dear CUE students. My ultimate goal is to support you anyway I can, guarantee that your voice is heard and help you navigate.
– If Mayrane Lope is to be elected as VP Academic, she would like to create an effective communication between students and the government body of Concordia.
– This international student is big on the concept of communication and relationship building.


Mayrane Lope

VP Student Life – Tsiede Krekelberg

Hi, my name is Tseide Krekelberg and I am running for VP student life! I am a second-year double major in drama and English and hope to help people by sharing my experiences. I have been involved at CUE since my first year and volunteered at several events. I became CUE’s SAGA president this year, and have been loving the fulfillment it brings me to help others. I would love to have your vote and support on the 15th and 16th of March!
Thanks in advance.
– One of the main priorities that she wants to focus on is the students. Focusing on the positive wellbeing of the campus and ensuring the students needs are being taken care of. Specifically, Tseide wants to help those who require the learning accommodations that Concordia offers.
– She wants to make sure that every voice is heard and equally provide a variety of tools for all students.


Tsiede Krekelberg

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