Becoming a vice president was a hard decision, I knew very little about the organization, I knew nothing about the responsibilities that this position entailed, but I knew how to balance a budget, how to write a cheque and how to keep a ledger, how much more could their be to the VP of Finance position?
If I was to only do the VP of Finance basic position I would have done exactly what I thought I was signed up to do. However, this was not the case. For many reasons it was difficult to fill positions, we had many empty positions and the year started with only 5 execs as members. This meant my responsibilities were much greater as events still needed to be planned and other responsibilities that needed to be dealt with.
I spent the year learning, figuring out how to handle the finances of the ESS, managing the meetings, going over policies, and learning the different responsibilities. I cannot believe how much I learned during this year, about myself and about the university. I started the year wanting to do very little, just coast through and be only as involved as needed. However, this is not the kind of person I am, I normally am in control of everything that is happening which means when there are problems or situations that need to be handled I would take it over. This resulted in me doing a lot.
The first time I realized how much I was going to be doing was a few weeks after starting when I started digging through past finance records, due to uncontrollable events of the year before we had about 80 signed cheques that had not been sent out to their proper recipients, some of which dated back two or three years. I took it upon myself to ensure students were getting their proper amount of money, this involved a lot of faculty meetings to find the proper students, to re-structure the sponsorship applications, and to create a better system for Finances. By the end of the year I had created a strong system to take care of all finances.
Besides taking care of the Finances of the ESS, I was also asked to sit on the Ad Hoc committee for the Strategic Plan, which as much as I initially dreaded the ideas giving up a Friday for a meeting, I ended up taking a lot of pride in the work that I was doing. It was through this committee I met so many amazing faculty members, one of which would be a professor of mine the next year and others would become an inspiration to my work and teaching philosophy. I also got to attend the Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation Annual Meeting, and Spring conference which allowed me to connect with teachers who had a passion for their career, which reignited the passion I had for teaching, which at the time was slowly vanishing.
The year I spent being the Vice President of Finance gave me direction, in my career, in my passions, and in my own vision for the ESS. Which I applied to the next year, determining that I decided to put forward my nomination for the ESS President.