It has been an incredible feat that while she was initially elected as VP student services representative, Larissa Chen quickly rose to her new title as Simon Fraser Student Society (SFSS) president when Deepak failed to enroll in class for the summer 2016 semester. Her spritely spirit continues in her role as president (while taking a full course load), mostly educating students on what the SFSS actually is and what the next great acts will be at the SFSS Spring Kickoff. How does she do it? Coffee, and lots of it. She may be small — she is so “short,” in fact, that this is exactly the reason why she was awarded a spot on our “short” list.
If SFU were a region in Pokémon, its legendary would be the steel/ghost type Deepak Sharma. Sharma proved difficult to catch, and when finally caught was relegated to a box in favour of a stronger, more well-understood team that was proven in battle. While defensively strong and notoriously hard to knock down, Sharma also disappeared for months only to use Phantom Force to reappear and run again for SFSS president. He might have taken a knockout blow from Larissa Chen, but Sharma might come back yet again. After all, it is hard to keep a legend down for very long — even if he only comes back in story form.
Andrew Petter is the eighth president and vice-chancellor at SFU. Notably, he can be congratulated for leading SFU into its next 50 years following last year’s 50th anniversary. He welcomed the likes of Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau following the grand opening of a new building to house the new environmental engineering program. He can also be commended for his impeccable timing in objecting to the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain expansion on the day it was approved. By far though, his largest accomplishment, which puts him on our shortlist, is his commitment to SFU’s strategic vision of being a leading and “engaged” university. Indeed he is the most “engaged” president SFU has known, and has been quoted saying “engaged” a whopping 1,200 times this year.
The universally loved and hated food and beverage services manager for the SFSS. He is the man who is responsible for running the only bright spot on Burnaby Mountain — the Highland Pub. But just as students were getting ready to celebrate and bask in the few rays of sun that hit the fortress that is SFU, he cruelly pulled away the only watering hole for students (as only a dictator can). After citing “budget shortfalls,” the Highland Pub was shut for the summer session. How an establishment that serves alcohol can close on a university campus is beyond this writer, but it was back in the fall and with its return Flipse introduced a whole new language for overworked Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences students to study — menu English. However, students will continue to support this dictator so long as he keeps the taps flowing.