Label had a chance to interview Leoni Sevillie, VP Societies hopeful, and learnt about what she thinks sets her apart from the other candidates and why she’s always wanted to go for this position.

Why are you running for this position?

I’m running for this position as I have quite a lot of experience within Societies, I have been involved within Societies since fresher year, and have been a Committee member for Stage Societies for the past two years. I’m really passionate about the role and what it stands for and that’s why I am a member of the current societies committee of which benefits me in being able to see the ins and outs of how it is run and not just being a part of the society and feeling the effects of what happens, but also being able to be involved within the organisation of the events and societies themselves. As you can see I really like getting involved, I’m just very keen.

What makes you more suited than other candidates?

The main thing that runs in my favour, I believe, is the fact that I have so much experience, I have not only been heavily involved in the union side of things, but also within my course, as I am part of the Arts Committee and Union Council, so having experience in how things are run really aids in my perceptions of organisations. All of this experience means that I’m able to see things that others may not necessarily identify as being important aspects, or necessary factors towards the running of an organisation as I have always taken a back seat within my Committee’s and therefore have gained a greater insight into the varied workings of these societies.

Can you tell us about your campaign theme?

My campaign theme is ‘Leonie Deville’. First and foremost it rhymes with my name, however I know that she is obviously a villain, but the main aspects of her that appeals to me is that she knows what she wants, she’s passionate about what she strives for and therefore I thought it was well suited for my manifesto.

What would you say is the most important aspect of your manifesto?

The most important part of my manifesto is most probably my first point, of which is about creating a platform for all societies to advertise and discuss ‘things’. I think it is most important because as a section, it is so broad and therefore it is hard for many societies to communicate with one another and get the word out to others, and therefore building a central contact base would build these connections between each society and aid in me managing close relationships among committees. It would ofcourse we a work in progress, but it would be something that can be gradually implemented and worked upon throughout the early stages of the academic year. There is no way you’re going to get a Facebook Group with everyone in each society as a member, and therefore maybe using another form of media, possibly Google Drive would be more practical and professional. I would put forward the possibility of having another role on the societies committee of ‘marketing manager’ of who would be dedicated to overseeing this platform and managing communications between societies and committees.

In one sentence why should people vote for you?

People should vote for me because I am driven to combine my experience with my passion for societies, and aim to maintain and improve the thriving section with this.

What are you most looking forward to about campaigning?

Mostly, talking to people, because I do a drama degree so Id say I’m fairly outgoing and chatty, but its rarely that you get to go out and chat to people and get their opinions, but running for exec I feel you need to have this certain quality. Being a third year, I know where everything is now and so I’m quite comfortable being pushed out of my comfort zone, if someone doesn’t want to chat to you or doesn’t answer the door you kind of have to take it with a pinch of salt and move on [laughs].

What are you least looking forward to?

Possibly the bad publicity? I know that the Epinal (Tab) write quite controversial articles sometimes, and people comment upon them and do read them, so I guess I’m least looking forward to finding bad or knock back statuses.

What do you think will be the most challenging part?

The most challenging part is probably getting people in halls showing an interest in societies. There is a big divide between societies union and halls and that is part of my manifesto – to try and improve relations and look at merging it.

What part of campaigning are you going to focus on most?

It will probably be the door knocking, as I believe people prefer meeting you in person as if they feel you are making more of an effort they are more likely to vote for you and understand your manifesto more clearly.

What have you spent your budget on?

I have some really nice bone shaped sweets, and things that are costume based, and a stamp, which is pretty cool!

What made you want to run for this position?

I’ve always wanted to run for it, which may sound cringe, but it’s true! Ever since I became a fresher rep for stage societies I then wanted to be chair, and now I want to be VP Societies. Its just always been my aspiration to help people, and without societies I may not be here at this University, as it has made my university experience and I want others to have the experiences I have had!

What do you like about the way the role has been carried out this year?

Sophie has been really great this year, and as I am on committee I have seen a lot of what Sophie has done. I believe Sophie has been impeccable with her organisation and especially with things such as the Bazaar, everything was very planned out and it ran pretty smoothly. It was really hard making my manifesto, as I was thinking what more can I do than what she has already done?!

Tell us something not many people know about you?

I’m half Italian, I don’t look it, I’m very pale, but yeah I’m half Italian!

What three characteristics do you have that make you well suited to this role?

Driven, Friendly, and Enthusiastic.

This interview was carried out by Label Sport Editor, Imogen Harry.

To find out more about Leoni’s manifesto, click here.


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