The new Students’ Union Officer team has been declared, following the annual Results Night event in Foundry.
This year’s Officer Elections saw a record turnout in the history of Students’ Union Officer elections with 9,383 votes in total, eclipsing last year’s turnout of 8,270.
Two student trustees were also elected, while grime artist Stormzy took the title of Honorary President of the SU ahead of Greta Thunberg and Vanessa Nakate.
The SU will also remain affiliated to the NUS for another year, after the annual referendum.
New SU President Beth Eyre described the entire process as “super emotional to put myself out there so much. It goes against everything I thought I could do, thank you so much for voting.”
She added that she has “stuck it to people who wanted to make this campaign about clicks on their website or people who want to make this something it shouldn’t be”.
Eyre wants to introduce free ‘Life Lesson Lectures’ and also stressed the need for having sustainability at the forefront of the SU.
Holly Ellis won Welfare Officer by over 1,000 votes ahead of any other candidate. She is the current chair of the Welfare Committee (amongst many other roles within the SU), and wants to fight for compensation for students for missed teaching hours during the strikes.
Iuri Montenegro, the new International Students’ Officer, thanked his friends “who made me understand what it means to move to another country and feel at home.” His manifesto corroborates this, stating that “our University is a small-scale example of how the world should be: somewhere where people from all backgrounds can live, learn and help one another.”
Jordan Weir secured his role as the new SU Development Officer after his second year of campaigning for the job. Weir wants to open an SU ‘Swap Shop’ to reduce the consumption of new clothing amongst the student population and reduce fast fashion.He also wants to support SU staff to give them better working conditions and to end fossil fuel usage in our university.
Meanwhile, Joel Kirk was elected as the next Activities Officer. Kirk wants to introduce a ‘Societies Week’ which is dedicated to showcasing societies and their diversity. He also wants to utilise the ‘Sustainable Society Storage’ policy that he created at the SU council to lobby the University to create accessible society storage.
Sports Officer Matt Graves won by a nail-biting 38 votes ahead of his opponent Jordan Frith after a tough campaign.
In his speech he said “to people who are feeling low, things will get better, time will heal – if this isn’t a huge example of it, I don’t what is.” He plans to lobby senior university staff to increase its annual £142,000 club sport contribution, as he claims that it is “not high up enough on the University’s agenda.”
Rosa Tully, the current Women’s Officer, commended “a real strength of character to run as Women’s Officer” to the new Women’s Officer Lily Grimshaw, who was the lone candidate. Grimshaw wants to introduce a ‘Body Neutrality’ campaign to tackle the stigma surrounding body image issues and wants to ensure that intersectionality remains at the centre of SU policy formation.
New Education Officer Ellie Lynas wants to ensure that there is better communication between students and the University during strike periods. She also promises to push the universities to stop using negative marking and see that humanities students get more for their money, for example by providing course books for free. She won in a close victory over second-place Sam Calderbank.
This was the first year the societies were allowed to endorse candidates. Just 27 students ran for the eight officer roles this year, and this was the first time since 2014/15 in which a role went uncontested.
The new Officers will begin their jobs in June where they will be given the chance to enact their manifestos, as well as working alongside Students’ Union staff to implement their goals.