My name is Mark Karstad. I am running for Director of the TLAPS constituency for AASUA for the term, 2020 - 2021.
I am excited about the prospects of being actively involved in AASUA leadership at such an important time in Higher Education and specifically in Alberta’s flagship institution. It was my honor and pleasure to have held a Director role for four years between 2015-2019. Even though I sat aside last year to attend UofA Gold Leadership College, I continued to be actively involved in TLAPS issues. I attended APO committee meetings as they kindly represented TLAPS due to an absence of elected representation in 2019/20. I met regularly with APO leadership (acting TLAP Director on the Executive Committee) and provided my input on a variety of initiatives such as the AASUA bargaining survey. I am excited about the prospects of involvement in the AASUA Executive, as a Director again.
During these difficult times, I understand the necessity of collaboration which forms the core strength of any union. We need to work together.
Consistently, and spanning the breadth of my employment at UofA, I have striven to reach out and cooperate with faculty, staff and students. I do not intend to change. I have made significant connections and relationships within AASUA regarding member engagement which will act as a springboard to my continued active and effective involvement within the union. It is my intention to form a tighter relationship of cooperation with APOs in areas where we share common goals and can share resources. I intend to continue the existing monthly joint open APO/TLAPS committee meetings format - all are welcome! I invite all TLAPS to reach out. I want to hear your story and represent your issues.
Often working on one-year contracts, without job security, with limited benefits, TLAPS are very sensitive to changes in their employment situation. The current health emergency just exacerbates and highlights this problem. TLAPS play an oversized and under-rewarded role relating to the core ‘business’ of the University. But we can be stronger if we stand together.
I have been a temporary employee, employee since 2012, holding the same role, Manager of Academic Technology, Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry. I have held the position of Constituency Chair, been active on AASUA Executive as a Director and also a Committee member. In addition to my past AASUA involvement, I have been a member of IST’s eCAB, (change advisory board), and now LTAC (Learning Technology Advisory Committee) and a review member of the School of Dentistry’s Educational Research & Scholarship Fund. I have extensive international experience, growing up in Kenya and professional employment in higher ed institutions in both the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia. In Edmonton, I have worked for EPSB, NAIT, Norquest College and the UofA.
I appreciate your support