Who is URSU? Thomas Okoukoni – URSU Student Support Coordinator

Thomas Okoukoni Student Support Assistant smiles at the camera. He is indoors and wearing a white t-shirt. Behind him is a white door and black cabinet.

IMAGE DESCRIPTION: Thomas Okoukoni (he/him), URSU Student Support Coordinator smiles at the camera. He is indoors and wearing a white t-shirt. Behind him are a white door and black cabinet.

What is your position at the University of Regina Students’ Union?

I am a practicum student and work supporting the Student Advocate as the Student Support Coordinator.

Are you a student? If so, what year of study and what field?

Yes, I am. I am in my fourth year of Social Work.

What does your week usually involve in regards to work?

I start with a mini-meeting with my supervisor during these days, where she tells me my activities for the day. Most times, I reply to students’ applications for the Career Development Grant and the Emergency Bursary Fund. Sometimes I join my supervisor in Zoom meetings concerning students’ complaints and appeals. Sometimes I brainstorm with my supervisor in making decisions regarding students’ requests.

How will this job help you in that field in the future and right now?

Firstly, working at URSU is for my mini-practicum. As such, it will help to fulfill one of the requirements I need to obtain my Bachelor of Social Work. The position has enhanced my ability to understand the politics played around policy, especially within organizations. It has increased my awareness and knowledge about the different resources available within the university and the community.

What do you like the most about your job?

What I like the most about my job is being able to support the students in their requests and rendering the appropriate services to students.

What do you like most about working at URSU?

I enjoy the connection and sense of family shared with the staff, especially with my supervisor. I love the weekly staff meetings that involve all the departments. I love that URSU staff members are welcoming, and always willing to assist when needed.

What are the biggest challenges or obstacles?

One of my biggest challenges is when people in higher authorities are not willing to bend their position for the benefit of the students. I’m also challenged with the fact that most students are deemed to be guilty or labelled guilty before a proper investigation is carried out.

How does your work benefit the students of the University of Regina and its Federated Colleges? How does it benefit the community?

Through my work in collaboration with my supervisor, students’ requests or supports have been met. My work has been able to enlighten students about the services provided by the organization.

What have you learned during your time working with URSU?

I have learned the importance of having a good and effective leader who is always ready and willing to listen to different views. I have also learned how determined and dedicated the staff of URSU are in meeting the students’ needs.

To find out more about available positions and career opportunities at the University of Regina, please visit ursu.ca/job.

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