Interactive Arts and Technology Student Union 2017 - 2018

From left to right: Hatago Priebe (Former IATOne Representative), Rebecca Lu (Secretary), Marcus Blackstock (Director of Social Media), Ioana Sandor (President), Yan Tymoshenko (IATSU TV Lead Producer), Sammy Yoo (Vice President), Radu Orlandea (Treasurer), Robyn Lai (Director of Communication Design), Gabriele Dal Cengio (Director of Events), Isabelle Soares (Director of Events).
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November 09, 2017

"Say yes to opportunities! They help build your skillset for your career and can help develop a more wholesome university experience."

- Robyn Lai,
Director of Communication Design

The Interactive Arts and Technology Student Union (IATSU) is SIAT’s independent undergraduate student union. IATSU is responsible for organizing annual events, socials, fundraisers, and meetings for the IAT student body and in charge of properly representing the student body across SFU and outside of SFU. Despite their busy schedule handling classes and student government, a few members of IATSU have taken the time to speak with SIAT to discuss their purpose for being on IATSU and what students can expect.

Meet the IATSU 2017 - 2018 Team!

What is IATSU?

Sammy Yoo (Vice President): IATSU is a way for students to be more included within the community through events such as Formal, Frosh, or other socials help by IATSU. It’s also a way for students to make friends and get involved with our volunteer opportunities. We aspire to help undergraduates have fun while at school.

Ioana Sandor (President): IATSU aims to be a “door opener” for the SIAT community. We try to introduce incoming students to what university is like and ease them into it. If an incoming student has nobody to turn to, they can come to us freely and we encourage it! We’ve recently been trying to get to know incoming students prior to their first day of class.

Second years, third years, and so on, we try to provide opportunities such as portfolio workshops, mock interviews. While with the new incoming students, we try to push them into the program while with senior students we try to push them into their career.

What are your reasonings for why you wanted to be an executive of IATSU?

SY: When I first came SFU, I expected to just go to class, do my work, and go home. But during my Frosh, it was my Frosh Leader who introduced me to other undergraduates and the executives of IATSU. I felt as if I was given a new start. I wasn’t really involved in high school and since no one knew me here, it was an opportunity to create a new image.

I also ran for IATOne Representative and unfortunately, I didn’t win. But this exposure led me to being a Director of Events last year and now I am the current Vice President. I am glad I went through this process; this feels like a once in a lifetime opportunity. You don’t get to do something like this during a job and it’s a good way to gain leadership experience.

Rebecca Lu (Secretary): Being in IATSU has not only been a great learning experience, but a rewarding one; especially during my first term in IATSU as Director of Communication Design last year. I now fill the role of Secretary and I’m still learning a lot! I’ve also helped organize Frosh both this year and last year as well as the FCAT Formal this year back in April.

Many of these experiences have had me in a designer role. These experiences teach you things you wouldn’t learn in classes. In classes, you’re taught the foundation and basics of design that will help you with your career but with IATSU you get that additional leadership experience where you can also learn about yourself and gain confidence.

Gabriele Dal Cengio (Director of Events): Jumping off what Rebecca discussed, I joined IATSU because I believe it provides its executives with a sense of responsibility different from course-related meetings and projects.

For those who have served former terms with IATSU, what’s it like working with new people serving their first term?

IS: It was quite offsetting! Some of the executives were attendees of the Frosh that I organized back in 2015 as Frosh Chair. It’s surreal knowing that they used to be freshmen before I left for my year-long co-op in Japan. Moreover, some of these executives have already served a term in IATSU during my year away. It’s fascinating having this mental “before” and “after” image of these executives and realizing how much has changed.

It’s also super cool to see how diverse everyone is in age! We have people from every single year so there’s a breadth of opinions and perspectives for how to approach who for our various events and future projects.

Likewise, what’s it like working with people who’ve served?

GDC: Working with these executives who’ve already served a term with IATSU has helped us train over the summer. It’s gotten us up to speed quickly and really assisted us in making the summer semester so successful.

What can students expect in terms of events for this Fall semester?

GDC: Students can look forward to general meetings! For those who are unaware, a general meeting is a meeting where IATSU connects with the general assembly (the IAT student body). We inform what we’re doing, what to look forward to, as well as what the faculty is trying to relay to students. Any students who want to know what’s going on within SIAT or any have any questions and/or concerns can address them during the meeting. We also plan on having fun themes tied to each meeting.

One of our fall general meetings included pumpkin carving and we were so happy with the outcome of the event. Students can look forward to other Fall events! IATSU is always open to student recommendations for events they want to see. There will also be a social in December with a secret-Santa-style event. Students can also look forward to various upcoming fundraisers! 

How can students get involved?

Robyn Lai (Director of Communication Design): We plan to revive former working groups that help with general matters of IATSU. This is an opportunity for the general assembly to dip their toes into the efforts of IATSU and contribute. Some of the working groups we are considering on bringing back are events, design, and IATSU TV.

Any other advice for incoming students?

GDC: GPA Boosters aren’t GPA boosters!

IS: When it comes to electives, be smart about what you take. Make sure it aligns with what you’re interested in or have the class be something you can build on top of (i.e. if you enjoy film, take some CA courses). Do something effective with these spare courses you’re able to take.

SY: Be open to meeting new people. During my first semester at SFU, I didn’t know anyone buy by putting myself out there, I met new people and it made me feel more excited to come to school. It’s always exciting going to classes and having a friend take it with you.

RL: Say yes to opportunities! They help build your skillset for your career and can help develop a more wholesome university experience.

IATSU is always open to ideas for events and feedback on anything IATSU-related. Any questions and inquiries can be forwarded to Ioana Sandor at iatsu-pres@sfu.ca.

Make sure to follow IATSU on their social media platforms:

Official Website, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram

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