Public Policy Association of Graduate Students (PPAGS)

PPAGS is an association of graduate students at the Max Bell School of Public Policy, serving as the official student representative organization. Membership of the organization is composed of all graduate students enrolled at Max Bell School.

PPAGS' mandate is to represent and advocate for its members' interests and concerns, to develop graduate student participation, and to provide a platform for improvement of all social and educational interactions between students at Max Bell.

To get involved, and for current information about their events and activities visit

PPAGS Governance 2021-2022

  • President, Phaedra de Saint-Rome
  • Vice President External, Umer Farooq
  • Vice President Finance, Vacant
  • Vice President Operations, Elizabeth Fraser
  • Vice President Academic, Jason Kreutz
  • Academic Director, Kerry Kittson
  • Vice President Social and Events, Vacant
  • Vice President Communications, Naveen Kumar Kanwadia
  • Social Media and Design Director, Paola Paredes
  • Vice President Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Munesuishe (Mune) Mafusire
  • Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Director, Vacant
  • Director of International Student Affairs, Emma Durand
  • Director of Mental Health and Well-Being, Aiza Abid

2020- 2021 Governance

Read the PPAGS highlights of 2020-2021.

PresidentsAnil Wasif Jonathan Lesarge

Anil Wasif & Jonathan Lesarge

PPAGS’s Presidents oversee the mandate and mission of the association as its chief executives, and serve as the PPAGS’s chief ambassadors to McGill University, the PGSS, and the broader public.

Key priorities for the Presidents this year include(d) the ratification of the association's constitution, the initiation of inaugural academic and social events for Max Bell students, and the facilitation of a successful transition of the PPAGS 's governance operations to the next cohort. The Presidents also work with the Director for International Students Affairs and the Director for Mental Health and Wellness as part of their constitutional mandates.


Director of International Student AffairsGina Maldonado

Gina Maldonado

The Director of International Student Affairs is a resource for international students, providing them useful information and managing initiatives to promote their integration with respect for their cultural identity. During the 2020-21 period, she will represent international students and facilitate their access to available resources of interest, in special consideration to the "new normality" implications.


Director of Mental Health and WellbeingDorothy Kwok

Dorothy Kwok

The Director of Mental Health & Wellbeing aims at developing "wellbeing advocates" via diverse workshops and events, and at being the student resource to navigate the mental health and wellness services to those in need. She plans to share mindfulness practice notes with the cohort, share motivating mindfulness quotes via different PPAGS channels and co-organise fitness and social activities to integrate wellness in daily lives.


External Affairs

Vice President, ExternalEllen Rowe

Ellen Rowe

VP External seeks to establish relations with external parties among PGSAs, PGSS, and McGill. This office will represent PPAGS at PGSS Council meetings and other graduate student associations, when appropriate. In keeping the PPAGS Executive Team informed, she will produce and share brief reports highlighting any developments made and decisions taken at PGSS Council meetings.

This year, the VP External will work with the Executive Team (such as VP Academic and VP Social and Events) to organize various opportunities to connect with external groups in PGSS and at McGill throughout the school year.



Vice President, CommunicationsAdele Brawley

Adele Brawley

VP Communications is responsible for all official correspondence with external entities, developing communications and social media strategies, as well as advertising PPAGS social events. This year, VP Communications will create the PPAGS official website with VP Operations and ensure that all students are effectively receiving PPAGS information and updates!


Finance & Operations

Mikayla Zolis Ricardo Chejfec Ciociano

Vice Presidents, Operations and Finance

Mikayla Zolis & Ricardo Chejfec Ciociano

VP Operations and Finance ensure financial and operational processes are established and maintained throughout the year to foster a cohesive and impactful service delivery. These offices will set up administrative processes and guidelines as a foundation to enable success for the future PPAGS teams to come.

VP Operations and Finance also develop and maintain project management processes and financial infrastructures; assist the Executive Team in turning their proposals into events or services; support collaboration between Executive Team members, and ensure the services provided by PPAGS are up to standard.

In collaboration with the rest of the Executive Team, VP Operations and Finance hope to provide the cohort at-large with entertaining, informative, and enhancing programming and services. They are both especially excited about developing better strategies for group work and a one-stop website meeting the needs of all MPP students.


Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI)

Vice President, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI)Nayantara Sudhakar

Nayantara Sudhakar

The VP EDI's role is to lead the PPAGS EDI Group and cultivate an environment that allows students to feel a sense of belonging, inclusion, fairness and mutual respect. The primary method of championing for this will be by acting as a liaison between the students, the EDI Working Group, and the Max Bell School. The VP EDI looks forward to creating an EDI Resource Book, organizing positive spaces to discuss the topics of equity, diversity, and inclusion, holding "office hours" where students can bring forward their hopes and aspirations for bolstering the schools welcoming atmosphere, and remaining an ally for all students.


Director of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI)Mariel Aramburu

Mariel Aramburu

As Director of EDI, Mariel works with the Vice-President of EDI to support the cultivation of an environment that allows students to feel a sense of belonging, inclusion, fairness and mutual respect. The Director is also a resource for students that need assistance navigating resources related, but not limited, to accessibility, sexual violence and harassment, and discrimination. In addition, Mariel assists in planning events and workshops that help students build a working knowledge of issues concerning EDI.


Director of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI)Gulrukh Qidwai

Gulrukh Qidwai

As Director of EDI, Gulrukh assists in organizing events and workshops aimed at fostering a diverse and inclusive environment for students, in addition to serving as a resource for students on issues ranging across accessibility, sexual violence, harassment and discrimination. In her role as Director of EDI, Gulrukh aims to cultivate a supportive environment for students based on the principles of belonging, inclusion, fairness and mutual respect.


Academic Affairs

Vice President, AcademicsLeonardo Lozano Amaro

Leonardo Lozano Amaro

As the VP of Academics, Leonardo will represent students’ academic interests and concerns to the Max Bell School. He will strive to improve the student learning environment and facilitate students’ professional ambitions. The VP of Academics will plan and execute at least two academic events, as well as create and support spaces to improve studying habits throughout the year.


Social Events

Vice Presidents, Social and EventsRebecca CharlesUdita Upadhyay

Rebecca Charles & Udita Upadhyay

The VPs of Social and Events coordinate and execute social events and activities for Max Bell students to foster a stronger sense of community at the school. They are responsible to oversee any social event end to end from planning the events, creating brochures, communicating about the events and eventually executing the events. They also collaborate with other members of the Executive Team and the school administration and any volunteers in coordinating process.

This year, the VPs of Social and Events will plan and coordinate social activities on monthly basis for the entire year in accordance with the mandate of the Executive Team and coordinate volunteers in and outside of the program in order to successfully achieve their social agenda.


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