Board of Directors


Sadie McAlear

Acadia Student's Union
[email protected]

Sadie McAlear (she/her/elle) is a fifth-year student at Acadia University located in Mi'kma'ki/Nova Scotia.  Sadie is pursuing a Bachelor of Professional Studies in Community Development with honours where she is researching the impacts of the housing crisis, as it intersects with individuals' access to post-secondary education in the province. Throughout her 2nd/3rd year at Acadia, Sadie sat as the Acadia Students' Union Community Relations Representative until becoming President in 2022. Amongst a long list of previous two term Presidents, Sadie is proud to be the first female identifying President elected two years in a row. Approaching four years within the realm of student advocacy, her hopes are to continue creating spaces where students feel empowered to use their autonomy and amplify the voices and supports for students who face increased barriers to accessing post-secondary education.
It is with a grateful heart that Sadie enters the position as Chair of CASA and reflects on the amount of privilege and responsibility that comes with the role. Over her next year, she aspires to continue fostering the community culture within CASA's membership and observers that highlights the unique perspectives of our members' experiences across the country. Through trust and friendship amongst the student leaders at CASA, our advocacy will be strong and united through the collective student voice. 
In her spare time, Sadie likes to satisfy the raging extrovert within her and refuels by spending quality time with good friends and getting a good belly laugh in wherever possible!



Tracy Karuhogo

University of Manitoba Student's Union
[email protected]

Tracy Karuhogo is the President of University of Manitoba Student’s Union. She is a 4th year Bachelor of Arts student studying Psychology and Women & Gender studies. She is also an international student from Uganda. Tracy will be serving as the secretary of Canadian Alliance of Students Association.

After serving in student governance for three years, she is honoured to have been given this opportunity to represent students from coast to coast. Her biggest priority is writing the CASA Strategic Plan with the input of the student leaders to make sure we are always on track as we advocate for affordable and accessible education. Using her experience as a women’s rights advocate, she is looking forward to integrating intersectionality in any of CASA's operating procedures, policies, advocacy work and more to ensure we are considering the different lived experiences of students.

When Tracy is out of the office, you can find her reading books by authors of colour, watching a series or trying out new restaurants.


Manmeet Kaur

Athabasca University Student's Union
[email protected]

Manmeet serves as the Vice-President External at Athabasca University Student’s Union (AUSU). She is in her final year of a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and is a pre-medical student who aspires to go to medical school to serve Canadian rural communities.

As a racialized women of colour, international student and practising nurse looking ahead to work towards being a medical doctor, she offers a perspective that is only sometimes present in the student movement. She has learned a good deal about both advocacy and governance in her time serving with the British Columbia Nurse’s Union (BCNU) as a Union Steward. She has witnessed the first hand impact that poor financial management can have on patient care. She plans to extend her experience to the role of treasurer where she wants to ensure that every student dollar is spent to its full potential. She wants to extend her experience as a tutor and a clinical instructor to present the budget to membership in an easy to understand and engaging way.

Manmeet wants to work together with membership by being transparent and to help make informed decisions that benefit the whole organization. She is committed to ensure that the organization maximizes those student dollars to get CASA the biggest impact for the least amount of money.

When not busy running into a meeting, you might find her spending time with her family, working on her research assistant project or working-out at the local gym.


Mateusz Salmassi

Director-at-Large, Advocacy
University of Calgary Student's Union 
[email protected]

Mateusz Salmassi is the Vice President External at the University of Calgary Students' Union (UCSU). He is a 5th year international student pursuing his Bachelor of Arts in Psychology.

As an international student, Mateusz has experienced first-hand how federal regulation can impact students' lives. Mateusz is passionate about the power of face-to-face conversation and grassroots organizing. In Calgary, he has organized student campaigns to stop the privatization of student services, against tuition increases, for international students' needs, and much more.

He is excited to use this experience to assist CASA's membership in creating on-campus campaigns that engage students and complement our federal advocacy. When he's not advocating for students, you can find him playing soccer, dancing, gardening, or enjoying good Persian and Mexican food back home in Los Angeles.


Aaron Ramos

Director-at-Large, Membership
Southern Alberta Institute of Technology Student Association
[email protected]

Aaron is a 1st Generation Filipino Canadian (He/Him) who is the current President at the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology Student association (SAITSA) and is also taking a bachelor’s in business administration with a focus in Marketing. Aaron believes that many voices coming together as one unified voice, is a much smoother and powerful melody that creates change and push the student movement forward for years to come!

This being Aaron’s second year, he has heard the stories of students from diverse backgrounds and continues to search for the unique perspectives that can guide the student movement in a progressive and sustainable direction.

When not actively pursuing advocacy and student life challenges, Aaron teaches music to children, volunteers, enjoys hikes, building friendships and works on cars!


Maleeka Thomas

Director-at-Large, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion
University of Lethbridge Student's Union
[email protected]

Maleeka Thomas (she/her) is the President of the University of Lethbridge Students’ Union. She is in her 5th year and currently pursuing her Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology with a minor in Anthropology. Maleeka is an engaged and dedicated student, passionate about advocacy, equity, and social justice. She is humbled by the opportunity given to her to serve as the Director of EDI on the Board of Directors and hopes to use this platform to amplify and empower student voices

Being an International student with multifaceted lived experiences, Maleeka developed a passion for advocacy and equal opportunities from a young age. Her experiences as a student at the University of Lethbridge provided her with valuable insights into the challenges and barriers faced by marginalized communities on campus. Motivated by the desire to make a positive impact, she became actively involved in student government and advocacy initiatives.

Maleeka’s hopes and priorities for this year are to revise and revisit the Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion strategic plan as well as ensure that the principle of EDI is interwoven in CASA’s strategic plan such that it supports the advocacy efforts geared towards ensuring accessible, affordable and high-quality education for all students.
Outside of her academic pursuits and advocacy work, Maleeka enjoys doing volunteer work and giving back to her community as well as spending time with her friends and family.


Stevie-Rae DeMerchant

Co-Chair, National Indigenous Advisory Committee
[email protected]

Welastekwewiyik nilun, wotstok (we are Maliseet people from Woodstock First Nation). Stevie-Rae DeMerchant (she/they) is a Wolastoqiyik women from the beautiful community of Woodstock First Nation. Stevie is a fourth-year student at St. Thomas University who is pursuing her Honours in Criminology with a double minor in History and Native Studies. For the past two years, Stevie has served as Indigenous Representative on the St. Thomas University Students’ Union and President-elect for the 2023/24 academic year. This year, she hopes to bring advocacy closer to the students and advance the student agenda in hopes of a more affordable, equitable and equal education for all students.


Shannon Cornelsen

Co-Chair, National Indigenous Advisory Committee
Cree mother, researcher, student at the University of Alberta
[email protected]

Shannon is an urban member of the Saddle Lake Cree Nation living in Edmonton, Canada. Shannon's adventurous spirit has taken her to live abroad in the UK, Germany, and most recently Northern Iraq with her children and cat in tow.

Life has continuously presented Shannon with both opportunities for change and lessons in human kindness, including starting her B.A. in Native Studies at the age of 50.

As an Indigenous Peoples interpreter at Fort Edmonton Park, Shannon strives to communicate the effects of intergenerational trauma and PTSD on the children of residential school Survivors to the general public.


Rose Grant

Director-at-Large, Policy
University of New Brunswick Student's Union
[email protected]

Rose Grant (she/her/elle) is the Director of Policy for the Canadian Alliance of Student Associations. She is continuing her second term as Vice President Research and Policy for the University of New Brunswick Student Union.

Rose lives alongside the Wolastoq River, which translates to the ‘beautiful and bountiful river’. Rose is perusing a double honours in political science and history. Rose is doing her honours thesis on climate policy and the topic of transnational corporations. In her free time Rose loves reading memoirs, cooking, trying out new cuisine, drinking matcha, playing with her dogs, and travelling. This previous year Rose was vice-chair of the federal policy committee, then chair for a few months.

Rose commits to making sure that all policies that CASA pursues takes an intersectional approach. Rose commits to making sure that all policy is relevant for students in university, colleges, and polytechniques. Moreover, she is committed to meaningful consultation with all of membership from coast to coast to coast. 

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