Label interviewed Jess Excell to hear about why she wants to be Loughborough’s Union President. She explains what makes her suited to the role and why we should be voting for her.
Why are you running for this position?
I’m running for this position because during my time in Loughborough I’ve been involved in all of the sections in the students union particularly thriving in Welfare and Diversity – being the sexual health coordinator and the Vice chair of the Mental Health support group. I’ve also been an active part of my halls being welfare officer, vice chair, hall chair and I’ve won committee member of the year. But, it’s not all about me. It’s about the students; I want to give it back to them. I’ve had the best experience and I want to make sure they’ve had the experience I have had. The students are what matters; I’m running for them. I’ve got a vision and I can make that change happen.
What makes you more suited than other candidates?
Anyone who is running for Union President has got good characteristics for the role, there’s no doubt about that. Why I am the best is that I want to listen to the students, I want to go out and hear what they want, they are the ones who matter.
My name is Jess Excell, so I’ve gone for Jess ‘Excellence.’ Because ultimately Loughborough University is an award winning university, we pride ourselves in excellence – academically, in sports and in research. And so my tag line ‘setting the gold standard’ – we set that example for other universities and I want to continue setting that standard for years to come.
What’s the most important aspect of your manifesto?
Whilst all my manifesto points are equally important, the most important thing is the students and I will keep saying this again and again. They are the ones that matter, I’m representing them. What they say is the most important thing. I want to make a fairer and more inclusive Loughborough where students can feel accepted and can make valuable contributions. The most important thing is the proper representation of the students.
We obviously have a very diverse range of students and at the moment we have the student forum. However at the moment it is not advertised properly so the student demographic within those student forums is not a correct representation. Not enough students from town are involved in the forum. I would actively advertise it to make sure all the students are represented, so that the conversations and issues discussed aren’t just orientated around a specific part of the union but around everyone, so everyone feels involved.
In one sentence why should people vote for you?
If people want a fairer, more inclusive and ultimately more fun Loughborough then they should vote for me.
What are you most looking forward to about campaigning?
Meeting all the people, I can’t meet everyone, but I am going to go out and I am really excited to listen to people’s ideas. Not just meet them, but also listen. Every single student in this university is equally as important. I want to make sure I can go out and really hear all their ideas.
What are you least looking forward to?
Obviously sleep is a major factor. I’m sure I’m going to be exhausted, but at the end of the day it’s worth it. I’m wiling to lose out on a few hours, I want this position.
What part of campaigning are you going to focus on the most?
The absolutely key part of my campaign is showing my face to all of those students. It is listening to those people who have got the ideas. Not just the hall chairs, the club chairs, but maybe those people who are quieter that don’t engage with the union as much. Why is that? Why don’t they engage? I really want to make sure I’m listening to those people.
What have you spent your budget on so far?
The main stuff like posters etc. Then, there are some surprises along the way which I’d like to keep secret to make sure they are big surprises!
I’ve chosen this position purely because I am a strong leader. I am passionate; I’ve got the passion to believe in something. I’ve got the vision to see it through and I’ve got the determination to make it happen. Those three characteristics make me individual; they make me perfect for this role. I believe I am the best candidate and that’s why I am running for Union President.
What do you like about the way the role has been carried out this year?
This year I really like the way that voices are being heard, both on and off campus. However, I think they could be heard louder, there’s still ways we need to represent the students.
What new ideas will you be bringing in?
One of my manifesto points is campaigning to improve student life for the town students. At the moment the students are paying ridiculous amounts for accommodation. It is one of the most expensive places for accommodation in the UK, compared to the same house for a non-student. I want to make sure that students in town aren’t then paying even more to get bus services to get on campus. I want to campaign to reduce these prices for bus services so that students are getting the student experience they deserve.
Can you tell us something that not many people know about you?
A lot of people are always surprised that I play Grade 8 saxophone and teach other students to play.
What three characteristics do you have that make you well suited to this role?
Passionate. Vision. Determination.
Interview conducted Saturday May 2nd by Danni Jones and Katie Wilson
Write- up: Danni Jones