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Mike Gill overview

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Mike Gill

Integrated Sciences Level IV

If Mike Gill can take satisfaction with one thing, it’s in the well-oiled campaign machine his team is running. From a platform of around 40 distinct ideas to professional quality online media that rivals the caliber of TV advertising, it’s clear that Gill has come prepared for this campaign.

Gill’s most significant platform point is big in every sense of the word, as he’s hoping to tackle major infrastructure changes in his campaign with a plan for a new student-centred building he’s calling the “Student Life Centre.”

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Part of a larger plan known as “Build our McMaster,” it comes on the heels of concerns about student space at McMaster.

“Initially we were doing a bit of research in lots of areas, and the tangible research saying that we are so horribly over capacity is just not something that I could feel comfortable ignoring,” explained Gill.

It’s a project that Gill expects to cost $75 million, with about $15 million of it dedicated to several Athletics & Recreation upgrades, including an expansion of the Pulse and the installation of a covered, outdoor field.

Gill certainly isn’t shy about talking numbers for his project, and it’s worth noting that none of his competitors have tangible budgets for any of their platform points.

But a closer look at the financial breakdown indicates that some concern is warranted on how feasible such a project would be, since a large portion of the budget will remain dependent on student approval.

Essentially, Gill’s argument involves the redistribution of about $115 in fees per student that include the cost of Marmor — the MSU yearbook service — and the David Braley Athletic Centre’s mortgage that extends until 2022. His budget hopes to use the majority of these fees towards building costs until 2047, which in and of itself would be one of the longest financial agreements in recent memory at McMaster, but also comes with no guarantee that students will be willing to subsidize such a long-term plan.

It’s an ambitious plan to strive for that carries a long ticket for future McMaster students, and it’s really unclear as to how much of the foundation of this project could feasibly be accomplished in a year.

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As much as Gill’s platform is centered around “Build our McMaster,” it’s worth noting that Gill has left no stone unturned in attempting to address a glut of campus issues. Some of his other unique platform points include a Homecoming Craft Beer Festival, a transition to online, open textbooks, changes to the policies of Student Accessibility Services, a standardization of podcasted courses and the elimination of Welcome Week Rep Suit fees, to name a few.

Gill certainly isn’t shy about talking numbers for his project, and it’s worth noting that none of his competitors have tangible budgets for any of their platform points.

In some ways, it’s an overwhelmingly dense platform that reasonably addresses most concerns an average student might have, but the large scope of Gill’s platform is perhaps a point of caution as well. In appealing to any and every student, his platform beyond “Build our McMaster” feels like a melting pot of an excess of ideas.

Despite this, it’s difficult to dismiss Gill’s platform based on its ambition, and he’s certainly done his research. It’s an enticing platform, and while it’ll require some convincing, it clearly indicates a high level of commitment and preparation.

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#OurMcMaster

In his words…

Most ambitious platform point

“Student Life Centre”

Candidate platform you are critical of

Justin’s safer campus initiative

“I think that that is a critical initiative, but I also question whether that point was done in collaboration with WGEN, with the sexual violence response coordinator Megan Ross, with the PACBIC working group that works on sexual violence”

For or against VP Referendum

Against

Opponent you would vote for

“Sarah Jama”

Website

mikegill.ca

Photo Credits: Jon White/Photo Editor, Michael Gallagher/Production Editor

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