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Hi everyone! My name is Joe O’Connor, or as I’m better known, Jocser. I’m from Kilmore in County Roscommon, and am currently in my 4th year here in GMIT. After graduating with an honours degree in Accounting last year, I am currently studying a Masters in Business Strategy. I am appealing for you to please support me with your No. 1 vote on this Thursday, March 25th, in the Student Union elections for next year’s Vice-President/Welfare Officer.

I am very enthusiastic about the possibility of becoming Vice-President, as I feel I would bring a high level of dedication and commitment to the job, and am determined to get the opportunity to implement my ideas on welfare, entertainment, parking and accommodation, amongst other areas. I would hope to represent all students equally, increasing communication with the student body to involve them more in SU activities, and looking after students’ welfare to the very best of my ability. 1


Here is a run-down of some of the proposals I will lobby to implement if elected VP. CAR PARKING I recently conducted a student survey on the key issues among GMIT students, and car parking emerged as being a massive problem for a very large number of respondents. If elected VP, I would lead the drive for action on this issue, proposing: •

A new code-based parking fares system allowing students free parking for the first hour and reducing the charge for 2 hours parking

An increase in the allocation of “Yellow Zone” staff parking spaces for use by either staff or students on a first come, first served basis

Alternative parking arrangements made for buses on Fridays

Gleann na Ri “Park and Ride” bus service made free with a student card

STUDENT WELFARE I would propose the introduction of the following new welfare campaigns: •

Career Guidance Week: Helping students find work in the current economic downturn when they leave GMIT.

Suicide Awareness Week: More needs to be done on mental health and depression, 1st years should be encouraged to become more active participants in student life, through greater involvement in sports, clubs and societies.

Exam Stress: More needs to be done to help students eat properly, sleep properly and relax currently in the run-up to and during exams.

Diversity Week: Celebrating the music and traditions of the many different cultures here in GMIT, and promoting greater integration.

I would also look to address welfare issues such as gambling addictions and speedier student medicare, which I feel must be dealt with.

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ACCOMMODATION •

The personal heading up of inspections of student houses as VP before the end of the college year, keeping notes and photographs of each house on file, to help prevent the overcharging of student deposits.

A contact facility would then be set up for students to get in touch with me, and if what I have on file matches their complaint, I would act as a witness to any action or procedure they wish to take.

Ensuring all students have full access to legal advice regarding accommodation, and are not unfairly charged for the wear and tear and general maintenance of their houses.

RAG WEEK This year’s RAG wristband did not deliver the cost savings it should have, and at 50 euro, it’s price proved prohibitive for many hard-up students. Given the current economic situation, I would propose a 3-Step Plan to an improved RAG week, offering more value for money. (1) Introduction of cheaper RAG wristband of about 20-25 euro, with an emphasis on cheaper, student participation-based events, making better use of Library Bar and canteen. (2) Booking of a blockbuster, ticket-only headline act that generates real excitement among students, for the combined cost of Tinchy Stryder and Tommy Tiernan this year. (3) More promotion of charity aspect of RAG week to students in weeks leading up to it, offering incentives like free wristbands. This can help restore reputation of RAG week, increase charitable fundraising, and also create more inexpensive student events, e.g. RAG Sports Day.

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GENERAL ENTERTAINMENT •

Increased promotion and support of The Library as our student bar.

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Weekly student theme nights

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Organise link with GMIT DJ Society to provide it with full backing

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Organise GMIT’s Got Talent contest

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Better drinks promotions

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Free nightclub passes

Increased SU involvement in CAFÉ IQ promotions.

More events for Cluain Mhuire and Letterfrack campuses, and for mature students, with more overall involvement in entertainment events.

Maintain events such as GMIT Christmas Day and the Sports Ball.

Student survey to determine what goes in to newly-secured student common room or chill-out area, Room 509.

EDUCATION •

Universal use of Moodle facility by lecturers.

Introduction of text message system to inform students of lecturers’ absence.

Proper complaints procedure regarding lecturing incompetency put in place.

Lobby for increase in library weekend opening hours.

SU website to include jobs and grinds info, with better use made of SU forum.

More financial support for mature students struggling with reduction in grant.

Reduction in cost of exam re-checks.

These proposals can be viewed in more detail in my full manifesto, along with further proposals on education, and also ideas on canteen prices, student fees and clubs and societies. This can be accessed at: http://issuu.com/jocser99/docs/joe_o_connor_vp_campaign_manifesto So I urge you, on this Thursday March the 25th, to VOTE JOE O’CONNOR #1

And MAKE JOCSER YOUR VOICE FOR VICE!!!!! 4


Joe O'Connor VP Campaign Manifesto- Shortened Version