News, SSMU

Raphael Uribe Arango

What kind of experiences have you had which would prepare you for the role of VP External?

I’ve attended national student meetings in England, which is where I’m from; I’ve attended meetings at TASEQ and CLASSE, so I have experience with student unions and how to deal with them. I’m a member of Amnesty International … I’m an avid person who’s willing to stand up for people and support and debate for them.

What do you think the VP External’s role is?

It’s to be a spokesperson for the student society and all the students on campus. He’s also supposed to be as transparent as possible. He has to promote the current affairs not just in Montreal and Quebec, but worldwide, so he also makes information available to students. A person who listens to students on campus and also a person who takes initiatives which he thinks will benefit the student society and the campus.

Could you evaluate Joel’s performance this year and say what you would do differently?

 I’ve worked with Joel on SSMU Council … He’s done a tremendous job raising awareness for tuition hikes … He’s obviously been very strong in student activism. I would focus more on the international perspective because I’m an international student. The strike is not going to last forever and the tuition fee hike will soon be an issue of the past and I would focus on establishing links with universities, set up exchanges, share research with universities, give the students the opportunities to travel. I would give students the opportunity to explore the global world.

Why do you think you’re the best candidate?

I’m a motivated individual, I’m very passionate about what I do. Obviously it’s very unusual for a first year to run for this position, but I thought hard about it and I love McGIll and I love the community, and I would not run but for the love I have for the community at large. I work very hard and I’m a very good listener; I listen to any view, regardless of the opinion. I’m very open minded, I make myself as transparent and as available as possible. I also speak three languages; English, French, and Spanish. 

If you were a superhero, what would your super power be:

I guess it would be flying. I’ve always felt the thrills and chills of flying, I was a cadet at the Royal Airforce for two years. Flying for me is a passion that really drives me.

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