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SUS discusses student trip to active volcano and other extracurricular events

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On Feb. 14, the Science Undergraduate Society (SUS) Council appointed Haoyi Qiu as the new Science Representative to the Students’ Society of McGill University (SSMU). Qiu will replace Mana Moshkforoush, who resigned earlier this month. Council also discussed progress in planning events such as the Psychology Case Competition and the Science Gala, and established goals for getting more students involved in SUS department activities this semester.

Representatives present updates on upcoming workshops and events

Councillors from various science departments reported on their work this semester, praising the success of the 25th Anniversary Gala on Feb. 10, the popularity of recurring Hypnosis sessions, and the high attendance at a lecture by the popular YouTube channel AsapSCIENCE. They also shared updates on a variety of upcoming events and extracurricular activities. 

Following the positive reception of their first kombucha how-to workshop, the Microbiology and Immunology Student Association (MISA) will be hosting a second class on March 15 at 6 p.m.. MISA also intends to host multiple career panels this semester. MISA Representative Caroline Chu encouraged collaboration among SUS departments to promote science students’ exploration of alternate career paths.

“We really think that it’s a great opportunity for students to think about what they could do outside of academia and medical school,” Chu said.

Meanwhile, the McGill Psychology Students’ Association (MPSA) is planning a Psychology Case Competition on Apr. 1 in collaboration with student associations at Queen’s University, Concordia University, Université du Québec à Montréal, Université de Montréal, and Université de Laval.

“We have been organizing [the Psychology Case Competition] all year and it will include topics from neuroscience to developmental and clinical psychology,” MPSA Representative Leora Pear-Dowler said. “It should be a really big event.”

MPSA will also host a mental health first-aid certification workshop on the weekend of March 24 to prepare students for handling mental health emergencies. The event will take 24 participants to achieve certification by the Mental Health Commission of Canada. It promptly sold out.

The McGill Monteregian Society (Monty) promoted the Earth and Planetary Science Department’s annual geological field expedition to Guatemala, known as the “Willy Trip.” Students involved in Monty have organized these trips for the past 35 years, with this year raising the most funds. The 15 students participating raised nearly $10,000 to fund the excursion, which begins on Feb. 24. 

“The Willy Trip really represents a unique learning opportunity for students who are eager to see how the concepts introduced in the classroom apply to the real world, and it is a great way for everyone interested to get together and fundraise,” Monty Representative Maggie Whelan said.

During this year’s Willy Trip, undergraduate geology students will have the chance to see rare geological phenomena that cannot be found in Canada, such as coral reefs and active volcanoes. In years past, the Monty’s trips have brought students to Colombia and South Africa. 


Councillors discuss SSMU policy on gender-neutral language

In accordance with SSMU’s recent policy mandating the use of gender-neutral language in its legislation and communications, MISA announced that it replaced instances of “him” or “her” in its documents with gender-neutral pronouns. SSMU Science Representative Marjan Ghazi praised these changes as indicative of a campus-wide shift toward gender awareness.

“I find this motion very important,” Ghazi said. “We want to make sure that, at SSMU, we are using the correct pronouns when addressing speakers and Council members to ensure [that] everyone is being respected at all times.”

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