By: Lorelei Kenny
Take it from me, being a sibling of a student union exec member is tough. You like your name? That’s just too bad, you have no choice in the matter, from now on you will be addressed as (insert sibling’s name)’s little/big sister or (insert sibling’s name)’s little/big brother.
Haven’t seen your sibling in days? Probably because he is preparing for a meeting with the provincial and federal governments or getting ready for a council meeting (which will probably take five hours).
Your sibling is taking on many new responsibilities as an SU executive member, and as a result, so will you. But don’t worry, I’ve got your back! Here are few tips that will help you get through your brother or sister’s term in office:
1: Make sure they eat. Time and time again you are going to see your sibling get home at nine, ten, eleven, midnight, and even later. Your sibling will say a quick hello, and then go straight up to their room and get back to work. Make your sibling stop and eat or warm up food for them, they are going to think they don’t have time to eat but they do. Obviously, a snack will help your sibling keep going, but it will also keep them in a good mood, and a happy sibling equals a happy you 😉
2: Just tell your sibling they look great. Your sibling is going to be very busy trying to meet dozens of deadlines both in the office and the classroom, so they aren’t going to be aware of how questionable they look. So hey, if your sibling is wearing the same pair of beige jogger pants, or skinny jeans just tell them that they look great. You probably have to be on campus in twenty minutes anyway, so there is no point in telling them that they look greasy and should freshen up…that would just make you two late.
3: Don’t bother asking questions. Half the time you will have no idea what your sibling is talking about. When they say, “We’d have to open up the constitution…and to do that we’d need to hold a referendum first..and that still might not work.” just nod and tell them you agree completely. Don’t bother asking them to explain what the hell they mean, because after a long explanation you still won’t understand, and you’ll just get your sibling riled up.
4: Smile, nod, and shake hands. You are going to have to endure introduction, after introduction, after introduction. Throughout their term you are going to shake hands with dozens of distinguished ladies and gents but don’t be intimidated, you’ll likely never see them again… So all you need to do is smile, nod, and shake their hand.
5: Listen and support. In all seriousness, just be there to listen, let your sibling rant. If you commute together, let them practice speeches in the car, when they have to be at campus for a 7:30 am committee meeting – just go to campus early with them and use that time to get some work done. You are going to see your sibling grow, learn and accomplish so much. Be there to support, shield, and lift them up.
Remember you have all the control, if you play your cards properly and listen closely, you will learn all the secrets of the student union, and you will have lots to use as blackmail 😉 Come next semester you will have your sibling at your beck and call!
Good luck to you all!
A past president’s sibling,
A.K.A. Dana’s little sister