Since its inception in 1965, the Simon Fraser Student Society has maintained a long tradition of students working together to improve life for students. In its first year, the Society organized social events, started a newspaper, co-sponsored Vietnam teach-ins, started a co-op bookstore, and protested against the bad food offered by Industrial Catering Limited.
Since that time, the Society has continued to play an active role in students’ lives. In the 1970’s, the Society organized against tuition fee increases, lobbied for improved on-campus housing, and started a women’s centre. The 1980’s saw the development of plans for a student union building and a continuation of the struggle for affordable education. In the 1990’s the Society has constructed the Maggie Benston Centre, expanded its services and continues to advocate on behalf of students for accessible education. In 1995, the Simon Fraser Student Society was one of the key organizers of the January 25th student strike, the largest national student demonstration in Canadian history. In 1996, the Simon Fraser Student Society achieved a two year tuition freeze for the second time in British Columbia’s history.
The freeze was extended for a fourth year in 1999. In 1998, the SFSS drew widespread media and public attention to the issue of student debt through education campaigns and the construction of a student debt wall in SFU’s main mall. In 1999, the Student Society celebrated the activist traditions of SFU when it drew campus attention to an area of convocation mall once known as “Freedom Square”; the site of many rallies and protests in defense of free speech and students’ rights in the 1960s. Students can continue the activist tradition by getting involved in their student union-the Simon Fraser Student Society.
In 2012, the Build SFU project was passed via referendum. This project is a proposal to create a Student Union Building to tackle the shortage of student space on campus. To take a closer look, go to www.buildsfu.ca.
The SFSS operates on democratic principles and is based on a structure of representation composed of Forum, the Board of Directors, the Executive and various committees.
Unlike departmental forum reps who are elected only by students who are enrolled in that department, the Executive Officers and Board of Directors are elected by every student enrolled at SFU. The Executive officers are responsible for chairing committees and ensuring that they are functioning efficiently and effectively.
The Student Society encourages you to make your time here at SFU more than just lectures and exams. By getting involved you can enrich your university experience and make a difference in the lives of your fellow students and the people living in the surrounding community.