Survey Says ...

CSU to Poll Students on Student Space

Student space may be one of the final frontiers for this year’s Concordia Student Union executive, who are currently finalizing a survey to find out what exactly Concordia students want.

VP Clubs & Student Space Gonzo Nieto gave an update on a study regarding the subject to Council on Feb. 8.

“We’re working with a company called Leger Marketing,” Nieto told The Link.

“The survey won’t be finally formulated until they’ve looked it over and given feedback and whether anything is leading or needs to be changed. In terms of the actual questions we want to ask, I think we have about 85 per cent of the survey done.”

Leger will conduct 2,000 online surveys, as well as 500 face-to-face surveys, for which the CSU will soon be looking to hire three people.

“We’re going to be hiring one student space survey coordinator and two surveyors,” said Nieto. “Those will be student jobs. The job descriptions are written but they haven’t been posted [on the CSU website] yet because our general manager has been out of the office a little bit more this week.”

Nieto added that there will be an incentive for students to take part in the online portion of the study, such as entry into a draw for an as-yet unspecified prize.

The survey originated in a Council meeting in late September. At that meeting, Council laid to rest the oft-maligned Faubourg student centre project, which would have seen the CSU and administration splitting the costs and space of the Ste. Catherine St. W. building.

After putting the Faubourg to rest, Council set aside the interest of money derived from funds already raised for a centre to study the future of student space at Concordia. VP Finance Jordan Lindsay estimated that this amount is roughly $160,000, but Nieto said current estimates for the Leger study are only a fraction of the available funds—roughly $14,000, though that number does not take into account certain expenses, such as the planned temporary hirings.

Explaining the five-month gap between the project’s inception and the hiring of Leger, Nieto pointed to an extended absence due to extenuating personal circumstances, which resulted in a backlog of work from his clubs portfolio.

Nieto said the study was an effort to improve on a similar one conducted the previous year by former CSU VP External & Projects Adrien Severyns. However, Nieto claimed that the results of that survey were not necessarily helpful, as the questions used were “vague.”

“That’s the main thing that the committee and I found. The questions were not useful. For starters, you’d find questions like, ‘Do you find Concordia student services conveniently located?’

“It doesn’t split the results by campus, which would be really useful. But, furthermore, it doesn’t even specify which services aren’t conveniently located.”

Nieto continued, saying the questions currently being considered would be more specific, and rather than using a “strongly agree, agree, neutral, disagree, strongly disagree” set-up, options would include “relative values” in the answer sheet.