2017Aug 30

Farewell Mr. President – Roberto Bagnato

17fa44fAs the 2016-2017 school year comes to an end, it’s time for SPAD council members to pass their torches on to next year’s group of student leaders. This year’s council organized a year to remember with events from SPAD curling to a SPAD students favourite day of the year, Saint Spaddies day.

Third year student, Roberto Bagnato, took the time to share his experience as this year’s Student Council President and offers advice to new students and his successor and President for the 2017-2018 school year, Carter Rock. 

SB: Why did you choose to run for this position and what made you want to represent the program as their Student Council President?

RB: I first ran for the position of President on Council after my first year of SPAD as an eager student looking to become more involved in the university and the program. Unfortunately, I wasn’t elected in my first campaign but was happy to support the work of a great guy and even better President, Neal Steven. My drive to create positive change didn’t cease to exist after first-year, which lead to my campaign for President of the 2016-17 SPAD Council roughly one year ago. As one of one the university’s “premiere” programs, and the country’s top sports business degree, I thought there was more to be provided to students to enhance their experience in the program. Looking back, I think this year’s Council has done a phenomenal job of doing so by adding additional SPAD events, creating more opportunities for SPAD students and alumni to connect, and continuing to support the SPAD social scene.

SB: Tell us about SPAD as a program and your experience in it and how it has shaped your brand.

RB: SPAD is really a one of a kind program. There isn’t another program in Canada that provides you the opportunity to pursue a business degree with a specialization in sport. As a brand, we’ve been known throughout the industry as one of the suppliers of top-end talent for a number of years. Projects such as Game Day, second-year consulting project, and Field Trip are entrenched in the program. As a result, I think the SPAD brand has shaped into a larger, confident, family-type group who can dial in and focus when need be, but can also organize a program-wide social event in a matter of minutes. Challenges throughout the program such as creating the inaugural Northern Sports Industry Conference, to surviving core year, has shifted my brand to someone with more confidence and patience in their own abilities to make it happen when it matters most!

SB: How has being on council prepared you in any additional way for your upcoming internship as a fourth year student, and the real world?

RB: Council is a fantastic opportunity for all SPAD students and I highly recommend all students try to become more involved with the program. Being on SPAD Council prepares you for the challenges that come with running events, fundraising for initiatives, and engaging and supporting a large group of individuals. The added responsibility that comes with being on SPAD Council allows you to be proud of when your event or project goes well, and allows you to learn from your mistakes when they do not. Event planning, problem solving, and fundraising are all practical skills that I’m sure will be applied to my upcoming internship and later on in the “real” world.  

SB: What advice do you have to offer to those applying to SPAD and those coming to the program next year?

RB: SPAD is so much more than a university program. SPAD allows you to make friendships and connections with like-minded individuals who are all trying to break into the sports industry. No other program offers the content, opportunity, or connections that SPAD does. The next four years will be some of the best of your life so don’t settle with a program that doesn’t excite you. Looking back, I couldn’t imagine myself at another university or program. How many other students can say that they’re excited to head to class to find out if Lebron James is clutch or if bobbleheads really do affect attendance? If you’re passionate about the sports industry, don’t think twice about heading to Laurentian for the SPAD program.

SB: What advice do you have for Carter taking on the role as SPAD President for the 2017 – 2018 year?

RB: Carter has done an amazing job on Council in the last year as 2nd year rep. Whether it was representing his grade, engaging with the entire program at events, or acting as a liaison to the university, Carter has always been a fantastic representative of the SPAD program. As he continues his tenure with SPAD Council, it’ll be important for Carter and his Council to always keep their purpose as a group in the forefront of decision making. I have no doubt in my mind that Carter and next year’s Council will do a fantastic job in their roles. I am excited to follow their success over the next year!  

SPAD would like to thank Roberto for taking the time to speak with us and wish him the best of his luck in his fourth and final year.

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