Class rep elections were held throughout campus on October 4th and 5th with positions for student council up for grabs. Despite a record amount of nominations, viagra 65 constituencies remained vacant at the time of going to press, generic with a further 25 representatives unopposed in election.
In addition to the vacancies, hospital turnout for the election remained low overall, with candidates elected on the strength of a small fraction of their class.
When Campaigns and Communications Officer Brendan Lacey was asked if the Students’ Union had made enough effort to inform students of the elections, he replied, “I think we have made a huge effort to get the word out there… We have taken a page out in the Observer, sent a text out to prospective candidates, and the information was on all forms which people had to take to be nominated.”
The efforts of the Student’s Union, while significant, rely on the competency of the prospective candidates to get the word out to the students they hope to represent. There have been very few direct attempts from the Students’ Union to inform students about the processes of the election.
While this year has been among the best in voter turnout in recent years, and Lacey is “delighted”, relative to the size of the constituencies, voter turnout is still very poor. This was demonstrated in a successful candidate’s victory Facebook status: “thanks to those 10 other people who voted for me.”
The Students’ Union’s push for getting people out to run for class rep however, has proved a success. “There have been more nominations in than in any time in recent memory”, Lacey declared. The SU’s video on running for class rep has over three thousand hits on YouTube. Second year arts student Sarah O’Brien suggested, “The same video for voting in the Students’ Council would have been useful”.
The vast majority of stage one courses have seats contested by at least two candidates, with the notable exception of Classics, Archaeology, and Art History. No candidate has come forward to fill this seat and so it will remain vacant until a student calls for a by-election to fill the seat.
Any students who are interested in calling a by-election for a vacant seat in their constituency can obtain an application form from the union website and the SU promise that “they will be actively recruiting reps for the vacant seats”.
There is also a large divergence in the breadth of certain constituencies. While each individual school of Arts elects at least one representative, Science is treated as an omnibus constituency electing five seats. This year, in stage one alone; twenty eight candidates have been nominated.
On the other end of the spectrum, the majority of Masters and PhD programmes across the University have vacant class rep seats. Either a student will come forward at a later date to call a by-election to fill the seat, or the seat(s) will remain vacant for the year and the class will not be represented at the Student Council meeting.