Your LSU Vice President Candidates!

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Here at Label you can find out everything your Vice President candidates have to say!

 

Fejiro Amam

The main points of my manifesto are;

  1. To improve student staff satisfaction
  2. Have a more compassionate disciplinary system
  3. Create a more supportive hall students federation culture

What experience do you have that makes you suitable for the role?

I’m currently the International Chair and prior to that I was the African Ambassador on the International Committee. I was a Faraday Action rep and I was a peer mentor, a course rep, a student ambassador and the secretary for the Fencing club. As the International Chair is allowed me to work with a large amount of staff in the union and therefore I have a good understanding of how it works, how to make money, especially after this year as a large amount of our funding was taken away so we’ve had to be very financially responsible. Despite that we’ve had an extremely successful year. Through my time, I feel I’ve gone out of my way to really engage students with the section and that’s a really important thing for Exec members. As the secretary I had to manage the organisational issues, which is a big part of the VP role, working alongside Union staff, commercial services in particular, ensuring strategy is implemented when needed, being able to make the team work as efficiently as possible.

How will you support sections and give each section equal attention?

I think it has to be very deliberate, as VP I will work closely with the DRC to make sure that all the sections are making and meeting their strategic goals. I think this process could be more supportive and these goals can be broken down and then tackled. I don’t want it to be that we’re probing them asking have they done it, it’s more about let’s think about how this can be done, we can then ask has this worked, shall we carry this forward. It’s making sure that the strategy is really clear, and the actions are carried out continuously. I want to be deliberate how we’re going to achieve everyone’s goals.

What do you think needs to change in halls and how will you keep a close connection to them?

There is a bit of antagonism between the hall chairs because of the competitive nature between halls, I think that can change. Sitting on the Welfare & Diversity Committee where each of us in our own rights are leading very large communities, however the culture is very different and very supportive. It makes us so much more productive and the section has been so successful this year. I think that needs to come into HSF, it needs to be more collaborative and supportive and it needs to be something that everyone is happy to be a part of as well as a part of their hall. I think the strategic aims of the Union needs to come down a bit more and be implemented at the lower levels and you can’t do that without HSF. Instead of telling them, we need to be supporting them.

How important do you think committees such as DRC and HSF are?

I think they’re both important! The governance sub-committee challenges the exec and makes sure that they’re performing as they should be performing. By making sure everything is implemented properly, it means no one is just left. I want to be very involved and by making sure everyone else is very involved I think you can really find easier ways to implement the strategy. Ultimately, everyone will help to achieve these goals rather than challenge each other. On the point of HSF, whilst every student will have a department, almost every new student will have a hall and the first few weeks and months can be extremely daunting, the connection we have with hall chairs through HSF is important in order to support our new students.

 If you were a biscuit, what biscuit would you be?

I would be a custard cream because I appear hard on the outside but I’m soft on the inside!

 

Nat Doyle

What are the main points of your manifesto?

My manifesto is split into 4 main points. The first one is to give more power to student volunteers as there is a lot of the current VP role which could be done by our high level student volunteers and what’s more important is that they’re wanting to do it for example the HSF committee really want more influence over how halls are run and in my opinion the VP should just be overseeing it.

The second point is to improve our democratic systems across campus. A lot of people run for committee roles that they’re not actually sure of what they do. Currently there’s no procedure in place for how an incumbent committee should be advertising roles in elections. I want to make a campus wide rule that every job has to come with a description and a rough amount of time per week that people should put into the role at a minimum.

The third point is to engage more students into union life, that’s by acting upon student feedback that we’ve already had as people say there isn’t enough to do in the union during the daytime, or at night if you don’t drink. One of the initial ideas I’ve had is to create a student market one a week or two weeks, to invite student and local businesses in, they will pay a base rate for their stall and hopefully we’d then get more footfall. This should increase our commercial revenue and also our student involvement in the union.

The fourth and most important point is to champion student voices. I want to work on the ideas forum some more and put a strict timeline that every person will get a response within 5 working days, whether that is a detailed answer to the question or an acknowledgement that we’ve seen their question and this is what we’re doing. I also want to take a more active approach and go out into the university and ask questions, for example if we’re talking about nights out I want to ask them what they prefer. If you do that active listening, rather than waiting for someone to tell you what they want you’re going to get more engagement.

What experience do you have that makes you suitable for the role?

I’m a massive keeno to be honest! A lot of the stuff I’ve done relates directly to the VP role, as I started off in halls, I was Royce Vice Chair and Treasurer and then I became Chair of Treasurers, so I sit on HSF. In addition to that I’ve been on the Board of Trustees this year which I found very enjoyable as I’m a bit of a nerd and love a spreadsheet. Previously I was on the DRC last year, I sat on the Governance and Procedural Sub-Committee which is what everyone on DRC sits on and also sat on the sub-committee of Disciplines, so I’m pretty well versed in discipline policy. They’re the directly relatable roles but other than those I’ve sat on Societies Exec, I’ve done AU Exec, Sports Senate, I was also Social Sec for Claudia Parsons and Shakespeare Society. I was English & Drama Vice Chair and Treasurer.

How will you support sections and give each section equal attention?

One of my understandings of the role is that it is there as a relief for the sections. Firstly I’d have one to one meetings even if it’s a 10 minute coffee each morning with each of the section heads to make sure they know I’m there as a point of call. I think it would be really easy and would build a bridge between us. Also I’d like a weekly meeting with all of the section chairs to make sure they are aware of things which are happening within Exec and within the Board of Trustees, as currently I think that the current exec think that a lot of what is said doesn’t directly affect the section chairs so messages don’t get fed back. However on occasion it really does, for example hall committee elections changing dates really messes up some of the Action and Rag timetables because they go into the year assuming it’s at a certain time and then that changes and that message doesn’t feed back to them, it comes from the bottom up, rather than the top down.

What do you think needs to change in halls and how will you keep a close connection to them?

Halls are a difficult one as technically they’re run by the university not the union. Obviously, the VP role is a union role and currently I’m the Chair of Treasurer’s which is a university role, so I’ve sat with Darcy in meetings with Manuel about the Hall Community Fund which should be coming in in 2021 which is a slight change in which hall subs work. Everyone pays £50 on top of their accommodation fees which goes straight to the committee, rather than hall subs, halls can offer a social pack. What I’d like to bring in as VP would be to encourage halls to unify how they advertise their costings, for example depending on what hall you’re in you can end up with a discrepancy of £100 a year between ball tickets and hall subs. I just don’t think it’s fair, I think there should be some consistency across the halls.

How important do you think committees such as DRC and HSF are?

For me I think that currently the DRC does a lot of Democracy and not a lot of Representation. There’s a lot of democracy as they talk about by-laws, but when was the last time that someone on the DRC asked you what you wanted? I don’t know if they’ve ever asked what people wanted and that’s what I want to change. I want to make it much more of a representation committee, I want to encourage people who aren’t the incredibly keen ones to be on these committees because those are the students we need to hear from. The system works for the keen ones, I want to inspire change. My slogan is rewrite the rules because I think rules need to be re-written

If you were a biscuit, what biscuit would you be?

I’d 100% be controversial so I’d be a Jaffa cake because legally they’re a biscuit because they go soft not hard and because I’m a bit zingy!

 

Seth Johnson

What are the main points of your manifesto?

The main points in my manifesto are looking at improving the student nightlife. As this year I have seen issues with security which hasn’t necessarily been to do with the company, but the communication needs to be fixed. I want to improve the support for sections as there are somethings coming that just don’t work, for example the website. It has caused a lot of hassle for student officers and its meant that the goals they want to achieve this year can’t be achieved. We want to provide better support because the website idea is good, but the implementation was poor. I also want communication to be better because as VP you are responsible for the whole hall student Federation and you are responsible for the sections. Currently there is some discourse between how they communicate so I want to go and improve that and just make it more streamlined. I also want to streamline the bureaucracy and making it work for students. I heavily believe our sections are the lifeblood of the union and I think sometimes they are held back by rules. We need to continue updating our constitution.

What experience do you have that makes you suitable for the role?

I’ve had a lot of personal experience as a student member due to the amount of changes occurring. I’ve worked with Abby in Societies and my first entrance into the union was coming in and writing an open letter to them as there was a scheme called the societies recognition scheme came and I was not very happy with it because it was very union focused and not society’s focused. So I came in with my open letter emailed the entire section and here we are now.

How will you support sections and give each section equal attention?

I’m going to take a more personal stance this year as I’ve been talking to Darcy about her work so far and she said she’s put up to a lot of Salome’s work this year but I’d like take it back into the VPs hand as it is in the job description. I want to go and meet with them personally see how we can help to develop them without telling them what they need to do. I think is just allocating time properly, making sure it’s not just sitting at one place it’s always going round and checking how people are, because everybody is worthwhile, all the sections are amazing and they all deserve the spotlight.

What do you think needs to change in halls and how will you keep a close connection to them?

I’d like to change the culture as halls are more leaning towards drinking, I personally believe a lot of people enjoy that culture, but I do believe we need to go and evolve it, so we include more people. We have a lot of non-drinking events now but it’s going on pushing for more and providing support for halls on how to do that. To keep a close connection with halls it’s just a case of going to the meetings and listening to what they have to say. A lot of halls chairs already this year have gone and said we don’t like what’s going on currently, it’s about just listening to that in my opinion. A lot of the role is going to enact change but the first step is to go and show I care about people’s opinions and not be passive, be very active.

How important do you think committees such as DRC and HSF are?

I think it’s very important as DRC and HSF are massive, but I also think that at the moment they are not publicised enough or talked about enough. We need to push it to the forefront again and tell people how you can get involved as there’s been some disconnect this year. For example, you don’t get to see their meeting minutes or what they actually do.

If you were a biscuit, what biscuit would you be?

I’d be a party ring as they are full of energy and I am full of energy to change our union. I’ve also got fond memories of them as my Nan always gave them to me and I want to go and give people wholesome memories just like I have!

 

Immi Wynn

What are the main points of your manifesto?

Improving interaction between the student union and the wide variety of university students. To provide more academic and pastoral support for all students in voluntary positions of responsibility in halls, clubs and societies and to help drive changes within the exec and union team in helping provide smaller creative changes across the university campus to enhance student experience.

What experience do you have that makes you suitable for the role?

Well, I have sat on hall committees twice – once as RAG rep and once as Hall Chair and I feel that both of the roles I have undertaken have led me to learn a lot in managing people, managing my time, multi-tasking, undertaking challenges, pushing myself outside of my comfort zone and all of these things I think are relevant to the role I am applying for.

How will you support sections and give each sections equal attention?

Having managed a committee, I’m quite used to splitting my time and attention over every single section and so by communicating effectively with people and ensuring that I’m following up with them on a regular basis and making sure that if they’ve got any problems that I address them quickly, it means that with each section, whether there are problems or anything needs to be improved, I can be on it straight away rather than leaving it to fester.

What do you think needs to be changed in halls and how would you keep a close connection to them?

Oh, that’s a good question. I think the main things that needs to be changed in halls is probably making sure that everyone is aware of all of their opportunities across the university, not just within halls because, having been on committee and pushing of all these things within halls, it is very easy for people who aren’t necessarily interested in those things to be sort of left out and not really understand the huge variety of things that the university has to offer in lots of other sections, such as in the arts, I think there’s a huge understatement of things happening in that area, that I think could be pushed in halls. So, I would make sure people know all of the things that are on offer rather than just the things provided by individuals halls.

As one of my manifesto points, I think it is really important to improve the interaction between halls and the student union. So, I think it is important that exec have more of a face-to-face presence in halls, maybe through literally just spending a bit more time with hall committees and improving the hall buddy system. I mainly think it is important to have face-to-face interaction, make sure halls know what it is that exec do and the exec paying more attention to the small problems within halls, I think that will really help to increase that connection.

How important do you think committees such as DRC and HSF are?

I think they are an important bridge, because you’ve obviously got the committees and then you have the sub-committees that manage the smaller groups, so I think are a really important bridge and I actually think they could do with a bit more recognition for their work. I think there are maybe some positions on there that could be taken out and that’s only because I think there are some people who do lots of little jobs that could be spread among one position but there does need to be more recognition.

If you could be any biscuit, which biscuit would you be?

Okay. I’m just thinking of all the biscuits. I would be a Wagon wheel because you’ve got the nice sort of sweet layer on the outside which is what you want people to connect to but then you’ve got the biscuit layer which is a bit more tough and you need have that steely inside to be effective in your role and then you’ve got the nice marshmallow inside, which is all the heart and good intentions.

You can vote at: https://msl.lsu.co.uk/elections/cast-your-vote/ by 11am on Friday!

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