By Sadie McInnes
“If there’s one thing you can count on me to do, it’s to pleasure myself.” Famous words from this year’s Student Activity Council (SAC) president. There’s no denying that he started his term as school president with a bang. But with still no sign of him at Harbord events this year, many new students claim that they couldn’t even recognize him if they passed him in the halls. His absence has left many wondering, where is Nader? And who is this mystery man?
Hoping to get to the bottom of the whole conspiracy, I sat down with Nader over lunch to investigate. Unfortunately the intrigue unravels pretty quickly. “Last assembly I had an orthodontist appointment, and for the grade nine assembly I was working as a camp counsellor during the day, so I didn’t have time to come,” he informed me, matter of factly. It’s hard to argue with that logic. So I moved on to question number two, “Who is Nader Abdul Hadi?” And it turns out there’s a lot more to the guy than killer hair.
It turns out that Nader come to Toronto from Palestine, when he was six years old. The story of his move here is, as he describes it, “kind of funny and kind of scary,” but I’m not so sure about the funny part. “I was sitting at home, watching TV, and I was facing the window, and I heard a little sound at the window,” he describes. “I ran and cried to my mom and dad. It turned out that a bullet came – a stray bullet, it wasn’t intended for me – came through the window, it hit the wall behind me, just two inches above my head. It ricocheted around the room, and I survived that, but that’s basically why we moved here, or one of the reasons, cause at the time it wasn’t that safe.”
After his move to Toronto, Nader seems to have led a pretty normal childhood. I’m lucky enough to have a few close friends who knew him when he was younger, and based on their descriptions I’ve determined that he was just a half sized model of his current day self, with twice the hair. Now, as we all know, he holds the top spot in office of Harbord’s SAC.
“When asked why he ran, he replies, “Honestly, nobody else ran, and basically I just wanted to do it for University. As long as it looks good on the University application, I’m good.” Unfortunately, it hasn’t been that simple. It seems Nader has gotten more than his fair share of criticism this fall. This will be his first year in SAC, and his inexperience has sparked some controversy among longtime activity council staff. “I just came in to SAC, and they’re like, you haven’t been here, so why are you president?” he explains, “There are students who have said bad things about me, but they didn’t run, so what can I do?” Nader makes a valid point, seeing as he ran unopposed last year. Where were the other Student Activity Council executives in June? And if they didn’t run, who are they to complain?
When asked about plans for this school year, he responds, “Plans? I don’t have any plans,” but explains that, at the moment, he’s just working as best he can at catching up on SAC basics. Nader encourages students to come to him with any suggestions they have for the coming school year. “Pretty much,” he says, “just don’t hate the player.”