Council approves student back to school froshes

The biweekly SFSS meeting approved the annual froshes for engineering and science students

This is a photo of the outside of the SFSS offices in the Student Union Building. On the window there is a sign that reads “SFSS Admin Offices, authorised staff only.”
PHOTO: Amirul Anirban / The Peak

By: Olivia Sherman, News Writer

Editor’s note: The Peak would like to acknowledge that Josh Ralla, one of our staff members, was previously an executive director of TEDxSFU, but had no involvement in writing this article. 

On August 30, The Peak attended the bi-weekly Simon Fraser Student Society (SFSS) council meeting. Despite the SFSS meeting being cut short when quorum was lost, many topics, grants, and proposals were settled. Topics included grants for SFU student society froshes and multiple nominations for Council elections. 

Student Societies Pitch Frosh Grant Funding 

The Engineering Science Student Society (ESSS) proposed their welcome event for new engineering students this fall. The engineering student councillor noted this orientation, spanning from September 11–15, is a tradition dating back more than 20 years. This year’s frosh will host nearly 200 new engineering students. The ESSS requested $5,700 in grant funding, most of which would go toward food for the week-long event. 

John Walsh, facilities manager for the SFSS, suggested the event be subsidized through ticket sales. SFSS president, Liam Feng, noted the reason the cost is abnormally high is due to the sheer number of people who will be in attendance, and the fact the event spans multiple days. Evan Accettola, Indigenous studies students union councillor, noted the requested sum for food added up to an estimated $15 per person, which he deemed “near impossible,” to feed that many people on such a small budget. 

Feng noted that this was the tightest the budget could stretch, and the motion for grant funding for the ESSS frosh was passed. 

The Science Undergrad Society (SUS) also proposed their frosh for incoming students, requesting $10,414.25. 

SUS councillor, Catherine Ho, presented an amended proposal for the event of $8,169.70. This funding would go toward food and merchandise for an estimated 150 attendees. Merchandise included t-shirts and tote bags for 175 people. The motion to pass the amended proposal was passed unanimously. 

FASS on a Boat 

The Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) proposed their “long-awaited annual event,” FASS on a Boat. The event is a three-hour cruise of Vancouver’s landmarks along Sen̓áḵw land (False Creek). FASS requested $8,000 for the event for an estimated 200 attendees. 

Last year was the first time the event had run in three years due to a hiatus caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Councillors noted the price for a boat rental and hired security guards has risen in that period of time.

The requested grant fund of $8,000 is no longer accurate, and councillors agreed to table the discussion until the next SFSS meeting. 


TEDxSFU is a series of conferences, organized by SFU students and alumni to “foster conversations and community.” Representative Josh Ralla gave a brief presentation on TEDxSFU and proposed a permanent space in the Student Union Building (SUB) at SFU’s Burnaby campus. The multi-purpose space would serve as a meeting place, office, and studio. 

Walsh noted that, despite the SUB being a large building, there is very little room to be permanently allocated. “We don’t really have a lot of space in the SUB, in particular we don’t have a lot of space to be allocated. It’s a bit of a misconception because the building is actually quite large, the building itself is 113,000 square feet. But in terms of actual event spaces or rooms, we don’t actually have quite a lot.”

The motion was tabled until the next meeting. 

SFSS Community Guidelines 

Walsh proposed a renewal of community guidelines to maintain peaceful and respectful SFSS spaces. Items include refraining from harassment and bullying, avoiding smoking near entrances and exits, refraining from loud disturbances such as loud music and shouting, and staying mindful of others in quiet study spaces. The motion was postponed until the next SFSS meeting. 

The quorum for the meeting was lost by 6:00 p.m., meaning not enough councillors were present to continue with the meeting. After a brief recess, the meeting was officially adjourned at 6:35 p.m.