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Updated on Friday, November 7

#20062

OMG: To everyone who holds every little word and every wrong step up to Feds throat... I've worked with Feds for quite some time and met many staff (volunteer and paid) and I have NEVER heard anyone who works with them say anything bad about them. You know why? Because they are involved. Whether they did it for the hours, the resume building, the passion, or 'just because', they end up understanding what it's like to be a part of Feds.

We all work hard to benefit the students. The execs all work their asses off to better student development here at UW. The only people I've come into contact with who openly 'hate' Feds are ones who aren't/never was an active member, ones who only know (and constantly remind us) of the mistakes that were made, and ones who wouldn't be able to live through a day without complaining about something.

As a Feds member, it is in our best interest to work alongside students to create a welcoming and successful environment. As a planner, it is in our best interest to make decisions that will be the best (or at least, the lesser of the two evils) for the future generations here at UW.

So, maybe something extraordinaire won't happen during your time here in UW. But our university has come a long way and that wasn't all done in one term, it was through painstakingly, time-consuming, planning for the future.

28 comments

  1. To start - thanks for this post, OP.

    I'm a student who has done a fair bit with Feds over the past few years, in a few different capacities. I've been a volunteer, I've been an advocate, I've been a committee member, and on more than one occasion, I've been a critic.

    Feds isn't perfect. As an organization, it has some flaws that run deep, and they are not flaws that are beyond improvement or fixing. You can find *some* of those flaws discussed in previous posts on this site (though, don't believe all criticisms indiscriminately - while some come from a place of information, others are absolute bull).

    On OMGUW alone, I have called Feds out on:
    -Inefficient use of its own resources, and frequent duplication of effort across different departments;
    -A staff structure that puts a lot of actual power in the hands of the FT staff, sometimes at the cost of student empowerment;
    -An executive structure which, at its best turns the execs into administrators, rather than student leaders - and at its worst, leaves the leadership squabbling over petty politics while the staff structure takes over completely;
    -A poor track record, as far as transparency is concerned.

    ...and a few other things. But I want to be clear, in spite of all of this, I LIKE FEDS AND THE PEOPLE WHO WORK THERE.
    On balance, I think Feds does A LOT more good for students than it does harm, and the quality of student life on this campus is absolutely raised by Feds' presence and involvement. The staff themselves are kind and respectful people who, in my experience, honestly want to do the job they've been hired to do to the best of their ability. The exec vary from year to year - but I don't believe I've ever met a Feds executive (and I've met many over the years) who didn't genuinely care about benefitting students.

    I'm a big believer in not complaining about things I can't ever hope to change. If I had no love for Feds, or if I thought their flaws were irredeemable, I wouldn't waste my time criticizing them. Nor would I continue working with them behind the scenes in the hope of improving their service to students.

    And a bit of perspective on my part shows that such work (by others who see things similar to myself) is not in vain; Feds as it is now is a vast improvement on what I remember it having been when I first arrived at this school. And that makes me happy.

    TL;DR - I may criticize the organization with some regularity here, but never mistake that for an attack on the people who work for or with Feds. I like those people. I like the work they do. And I hope they continue working hard for students.

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  2. FEDS employee here,

    They do a terrible job of managing their current operations, hold bad events, and applaud themselves too much for doing so little.

    There, now you've heard a FEDS employee say something bad about them.

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    Replies
    1. A Feds employee who writes it as FEDS? Yeah, as if.

      But this is the internet, you might be who you say you are, and you might not. I guess it's up to me to decide whether or not I believe you.

      ...If you hate them so much, why work for them?

      Delete
    2. @2, you realize you're saying that about yourself right?

      If you are what you say (a Feds employee), you are an active member of Feds. Why are you doing a terrible managerial job, holding bad events, and praising yourself for doing so little?

      Maybe you should start doing more so whichever section you're employed with can be better?

      Delete
  3. "the mistakes that were made" The doublespeak is strong with this one, Orwell would be proud

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    Replies
    1. Don't mistake passive voice for doublespeak.

      Yeah, Feds makes mistakes. The people in Feds make mistakes. But that doesn't make them bad people, nor does it make Feds a bad organization. See what 1 said.

      Delete
  4. Feds is not an intrinsically bad organization, it has just become bloated and bureaucratic

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    Replies
    1. Not in every way. But considering the size of its budget, this is absolutely true.

      Delete
  5. I started out feeling pretty neutral about Feds but I honestly find that the more I learn about what they do and how they do it, the less I like them.

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    Replies
    1. Then get involved and change things for the better!

      Delete
  6. This post reeks of boo-fucking-hoo. I don't care about how hard you're trying, I don't care about this everyone is a winner if they try hard bullshit, I don't care how hard you work. I demand results and competence, so take your participation trophy and shove it up your ass!

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    Replies
    1. Someone wasn't hugged enough as a child... or hugged too much... perhaps inappropriately?

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    2. That's a far-fetched assumption 6a. Don't be butthurt because I said a meany-weany thing about Fedsy-Wedsy.

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    3. Demanding results and competence still isn't an excuse for ad hominem attacks.

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    4. lol @ 6.b No, the truth of the matter is nobody cares what you think.

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  7. I read a good deal of stuff on OMGUW that indicates the Feds need to improve. Incidentally, I agree. There is always room for improvement. But if you want something you need to be specific about what that "something" is - what the Feds can be doing better for you specifically, as a student.

    I'm a long-time Feds staff member and a Waterloo alum. I know the value of a positive student experience for an undergraduate student and I try to get students involved in their university community. But I also know that my student experience is outdated, and that the needs of today's students are different. I work with student leaders on a daily basis trying to make sure they have a positive experience, and using their feedback and advice to help me understand what I can do better for students.

    So, here you go - an anonymous forum to provide your specific thoughts and wishes to the exec and the full-time staff working to try to improve your student experience. Not just "better events" or "less bureaucracy" or "more results", but what, specifically, are you looking for from your student government and the staff who work within it?

    To the trollers, troll if you want, but if you could sandwich it would a couple items that could improve your student experience, items we can work with, that would be appreciated.

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  8. 'I have NEVER heard anyone who works with them say anything bad about them. You know why? Because they are involved.'

    with feds. /they/ are involved with FEDs, /they/ care about it as an organization- of course they won't speak bad about themselves!

    the students, on the other hand, are a different story. and that's the problem, isn't it?

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    Replies
    1. OP here, most of Feds ARE students. They drive towards one main goal, whereas, the students who complain are usually ones with no real suggestions and plenty of below-the-belt insults.

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  9. I have been involved in clubs and societies getting screwed over by Feds and that made me never want to get involved in such a terrible organization. The fundamental structure of it prevents it from being actually representative and responsible to students and as such it is not in my interests to become beholden to a terrible rent-seeking corporation.

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    1. Also, I had no option to not be a member, so fuck you. Take your privileged ass somewhere else, if I could remove my money from Feds I probably would have.

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    2. "Rent-seeking" is the correct term to call Feds.

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    3. OP here, as convincing of an argument that was, I'm sorry to hear you had no choice. As I'm not sure what happened with the clubs/societies you were associated with, I can only assume that Feds either made a mistake (which should NEVER happen because they should do everything right) or there was a reason for why it happened and you can't see it through a biased perspective.

      In any case, things DO change. I'm not here to get everyone involved (again), I'm just trying to limit the unnecessary amount of hate for Feds. You may have a good reason for your quarrel with Feds but if all you're going to do is sit there and spread hate, you're already MUCH worse of a person than anyone in Feds trying to help. It's a nasty obsession.

      Delete
  10. FEDS should get to know the people they work with. I think that developing PR is important for building a strong foundation you can lean on. For example, if they scam money from the Student Foundation they should let the employees know so they can make it better.

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  11. I love this. Working with Feds defined my student experience, and I have met some of the most talented, passionate, active, and hardworking students I know through the organization. For a campus with such a lacking student experience, Feds, Feds staff, and Feds events are wonderful. Truthfully, working with The Federation of Students is the only way I ever felt involved in campus life at Waterloo - otherwise, it was just lame.

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