Introducing your 2024-25 REC Team

The balmy weather of May has finally arrived, and with it comes a new year of student representation. Your 2024-25 Representation Executive Council’s terms have officially begun!

SAMRU’s Representation Executive Council (REC) is comprised of four students, selected by the Student Governing Board (SGB) and elected by students to serve the interests of all SAMRU members. From issues on campus to the federal government, REC is the frontline for all things student advocacy.

Keep reading to learn all about your new and returning REC members! And don’t forget to tune in close to the Fall semester as REC outlines their position statements and advocacy goals for the 2024-25 academic year!

TALA ABU HAYYANEH (she/her), REC President (returning REC member)
FIONA CHETTY (she/her), REC VP Academic
GENRI LICLICAN (she/her), REC VP External
ANISA TILSTON (she/they), REC VP Student Affairs (returning REC member)

Why did you decide to run for the Representation Executive Council?

TALA ABU HAYYANEH: I ran for the Representation Executive Council because I am passionate about representing and advocating for the diverse student body at Mount Royal University. I wanted to ensure that all voices are heard and to work towards creating a more inclusive and supportive campus environment.

FIONA CHETTY: I have personal experience navigating challenges within academic systems, and am deeply committed to ensuring no student faces the same hurdles I once did.

GENRI LICLICAN: My inspiration for my candidacy stemmed from the previous VP External’s impactful advocacy efforts. Learning about the role’s influence and the tangible actions taken by its previous occupant motivated me to step forward. Moreover, I recognize the myriad transferable skills inherent in the role, aligning with my aspiration to pursue law school and beyond. By embracing this opportunity, I aim not only to contribute to student life but also to cultivate skills vital to my personal and professional development.

ANISA TILSTON: I ran for a second term because some of my goals from last year are still in development and I want to see them to completion.

What makes you a good fit for the position?

TAH: As a policy studies student and former Vice President Academic, I have a solid understanding of student needs and the complexities of university governance. My background equips me with the skills to effectively navigate policy issues and advocate for practical solutions that benefit our student community.

FC: I have experience advocating for student rights within an academic setting and a passion for decreasing barriers faced by students.

GL: My academic journey has equipped me with a deep understanding of the criminal justice system and its complexities. As part of my undergraduate thesis, I conducted a comparative analysis of Serious Incident Response Teams (SIRT) across Canada, focusing on their transparency practices regarding police misconduct. Through this research, I am not only gaining valuable insights into the operation of SIRTs but also identifying areas of improvement. Specifically, I am recommending policy changes and systemic reforms to enhance the effectiveness and accountability of SIRTs within each province. My passion for understanding and influencing policy decisions, combined with my education and experience, makes me well-suited for the role.

AT: I am most passionate about non-academic areas of advocacy, such as mental health and food and financial security.

What skills are you hoping to build on during your time on REC?

TAH: I hope to further develop my leadership and negotiation skills. Working closely with university administration and various stakeholders will allow me to refine my ability to manage diverse opinions and foster consensus.

FC: I want to continue developing my advocacy and leadership skills.

GL: I plan to focus on deepening my understanding of policy analysis, including assessing the impact of proposed policies on student interests, identifying opportunities for advocacy, and further developing skills in building and maintaining relationships with diverse stakeholders.

AT: This year I hope to build mentor and leadership skills. I plan to support the student volunteers on non-academic committees and ensure that their work is fulfilling and meaningful to them.

Have you been involved with SAMRU before? If so, what did you do with your Students’ Association?

TAH: Yes, I have been actively involved with SAMRU in several capacities before becoming President. Last year, I served as the Vice President Academic, where I focused on academic advocacy and student support initiatives. Beyond that role, I have also been involved with the Policy Studies Students Society, where I engaged with my peers to foster a deeper understanding of policy issues and encourage active participation in policy-related discussions and events.

Additionally, I contributed to the Student Refugee Program, which not only broadens our campus community’s awareness of global refugee issues but also directly supports refugee students in their academic and personal transitions. These experiences have given me a broad perspective on the needs and challenges within our student body, enhancing my ability to serve effectively on the Representation Executive Council.

FC: Yes. I have three years of experience sitting as a volunteer for the SAMRU Representation Executive Advisory Committee (REAC) working directly under the previous VPA as a student representative on the General Faculties Council (MRU’s academic governing board). I also have acted as Academic Lead for MRU’s Chapter of World University Services Canada (WUSC) Student Refugee Program (SRP).

GL: My previous involvement with SAMRU was my role as an Executive for the Asian Relations and Cultures Club as a Social Media and Events Coordinator. This role allowed me to organize a range of events aimed at celebrating diversity and promoting cultural awareness. The role also allowed me to forge relationships with external organizations like the Asian Heritage Foundation and Indomie. Additionally, I was a global volunteer with AIESEC to Bucharest, Romania where it helped broaden my perspective and deepen my appreciation for cross-cultural communication and inclusivity.

AT: In addition to my previous term as VPSA, I have around four years experience working in the Peer Support Centre (PSC). I volunteered for two years, supporting the free breakfast program, and spent another two years as the administrative assistant for the Centre.

What’s a fun fact about you?

TAH: A fun fact about me is that I love to explore different cultures through cooking. I enjoy trying out new recipes and incorporating flavors from around the world into my dishes.

FC: I’m an avid traveller and have visited over 30 countries.

GL: A fun fact about me is that I used to be a traditional artist focused on semi-realism art. While my focus has shifted towards my academic and professional pursuits, I still spend some moments creating art as a way to express myself and be creative.

AT: I love to sing and dance! I was in choir in grades 7-12 and I had the opportunity to perform with a multi-cultural dance group.

What are you most looking forward to this coming year?

TAH: I am most looking forward to engaging with more students and implementing initiatives that have a real impact on their university life. I’m also excited about the opportunity to work on projects that promote sustainability and inclusivity across campus.

FC: I am most excited about advocating for students and shaping academic policy.

GL: I am most looking forward to leading advocacy campaigns and initiatives that result in improvements for students, and celebrating the successes and milestones achieved throughout the year — whether it is securing funding for student initiatives, advocating for policy changes, or fostering a more inclusive campus environment. Overall, I am excited about the opportunity to serve as VP External and contribute to making MRU a better place for students.

AT: Completing the policy reviews I am a part of and the creation of MRU’s EDIA strategic plan.

REC members are employed in their respective roles full-time for a year, which means every day is full of advocacy and representation happening behind the scenes, dedicated to improving your student experience at MRU. You can visit this link to learn more about your student representatives this year, view updated position descriptions of each member of REC, view their position statements and advocacy priorities, and even learn how YOU could potentially become an elected student representative!

To follow along with your new REC team as they begin their 2024-25 terms advocating for you, stay glued to our socials @samrurec on X (formerly Twitter) and @samrubuzz on Instagram.

Looking for an opportunity to get involved with your REC team? This summer, your Representation Executive Council (REC) will be filling student volunteer roles and a part-time staff role to help with their advocacy efforts. These are some of the best opportunities around to get involved with your elected representatives and help improve campus life. Check out this form to learn about each position and sign up to be notified when positions go live.

If you have questions, don’t hesitate to email your representatives at