So VP academic and advocacy of the Concordia Student Union, Lucia Gallardo, is not a student. Can’t say we saw that coming. If only this were the first instance of its kind. Anyone remember Morgan Pudwell? She was VP advocacy and outreach last year and it came to light only a few months before the end of her term that she was not registered as a student.
As shocking and frustrating as these discrepancies can be, at least Gallardo had the guts to put herself and her privacy on the line to plead her case.
The statement she released following the call for her resignation was really surprising and, dare we say, refreshing. It was a bold move which CSU President Schubert Laforest could stand to learn from, considering that he chose to explain his own academic eligibility issue in closed session of council.
This was the exact type of move we have been waiting for from this executive. From the beginning, when Laforest and Gallardo first faced registration issues publically, the team was so tight-lipped, we didn’t know what to think.
This silence or, better yet, this refusal, on the part of the execs to show weakness or admit they are in trouble has led to a multitude of problems for them in the long and short-term. Furthermore, it’s hurt their credibility substantially.
If the executive were only as forward and accessible as Gallardo in this recent statement about her personal and financial struggles as an international student, then perhaps the Concordia community would feel more trusting towards them.
This ambiguous approach is the exact opposite of what students were hoping for when they elected this team, and Council is surely feeling the same sense of resentment.
As it stands right now, the division of the CSU is clear. On one side, the current executive and their few supporters, on the other, the rest of Council.
As much as we appreciate Gallardo trying to be more open with Council, and with the media to an extent, the damage appears to be already done. Unless Council decides this Wednesday to reverse their decision about Gallardo’s resignation then A Better Concordia will have learned their lesson too late and come up short, in more ways than one.