What do you think of the term BNOC, and does your running for Exec have anything to do with you wanting to be one?
This was a question posed to all Exec candidates during Media Week as part of the changes brought in by VP Democracy and Communications Ali Cole. Many laughed at the question, some were very passionate about it and all had an opinion on this topic…
Mike Lyness and Paul Nanson, both running for Rag Chair, along with Tim Jenkins for AU and David Haines for Democracy were all quoted saying they 'hate' or 'despise' the term BNOC. Haines went on to say "HSF (Hall Students Federation) definitely has a culture that tries to make people feel like they are a BNOC. Having come from an off-campus hall, I don’t like the whole BNOC thing but it sadly is something that always needs to be considered with regards to elections."
Lyness went even further in his hatred for the term, telling one Label writer that "most of the time BNOC's are people who just love themselves and don’t care about money or making a difference, just care about people knowing who they are, worshiping them and for me a BNOC is a pathetic culture… It’s one of the reasons I hate a lot HSF and most of Exec. Which is one of the main reasons I’m running because I want to change it."
What about the other candidates? Chris McKenna, running for VP: Finance had never heard of the term before and when it was explained to him, he denied that his running for Exec was about people knowing who he was around campus. Many other candidates were also quick to deny the wish of being a big name: Dave Tingle, current Alumni Development Officer on Exec, running for VP: Welfare stated "I fully know that being on Exec does not make you a BNOC… I’ve been on Exec for two years and I’m not a BNOC."
While some candidates declared a hatred for the term, others saw it in a different light. Josh Hurrell, former Elvyn hall chair running for Union President spoke about it light-heartedly, but said "it puts a negative image on the people who do do a lot, and the reason they are considered BNOCs is because they are putting themselves out there all of the time… I think it puts a negative view on the people that do give up a lot of time volunteering." This opinion was also echoed by Becky Lauder-Fletcher, running for VP: Education and Sarah Haar for Action, who also pointed out that "those people who I know are a big name purely because of the hard work they put in, so BNOC is definitely looked at as not a very good thing but for the people’s names I know I think it can also be a good thing."
One Candidate, Zak Evans running for VP: Finance, told us he knew the root of where the phrase BNOC had come from in Loughborough: "The term BNOC was actually made in our hall, Rigg-Rut. There was a guy; an ex-hall chair and that's where the name started because he was the big man on campus, and it sort of went on from there. There aren’t any big names on campus. You’ll have people in one circle who are big names, but then also people who are big names in another circle. All these different circles don’t interact with each other, so really there isn’t a BNOC in Loughborough. For me, it’s not about that. I’m not bothered what people think about me. I’m just here to do my job, and that’s it."
All candidates, similar to Zak, were quick to deny that any of their reasons for going for Exec were to do with them wanting a BNOC status, and that for each it was simply about doing the job they have applied for.
Some candidates such as Helen Crossley running for Media and Tim Jenkins, said they didn't think being a 'BNOC' made someone win a campaign, and it was much more about how many students you meet during this time.
Will the supposedly 'bigger names' come out on top in this year's elections? We'll find out on results night in six days time… Watch out tomorrow for our opening report of campaign week for the 2013 Exec Elections.