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thewaterfront

Free Election Issue March 19, 2012 waterfrontonline.co.uk

INSIDE

the official student newspaper of swansea university NEWS

Elections bingo kills time during week

FEATURES

page 4

Read the manifestos and vote online page 2

SPORT

Two take on current President Flash page 3

SATIRICAL ELECTION VIDEO GOES VIRAL ON YOUTUBE

Students’ Unions around the country log on to view a different way to publicise elections by Jon May

front@swansea-union.co.uk If you haven’t seen the viral “ELECTIONS!” video, where have you been? The satirical take on the election process was dreamed up by Front! Editor Jon May and Assistant News Editor Chris Flynn, who also starred in them. It rocketed to success with over 1,000 views overnight for the unfinished mock-up, with it being shared across Students’ Unions around the country. The video parodies Mitchell and Webb’s “Football” sketch, which overhypes the importance of 24 hour sports games coverage. The election jibe covered things that irritate the average student in a comical way. It was designed to get people to engage with the process with jokes made about voting on candidates in a “hot or not” fashion, where voters vote simply in order of attractiveness. Xtreme Station Manager Lewis Crompton was one of the first to see the videos: “I thought it was a great video. A lot of students in their first year won’t understand what the elections are about and how their choices can affect the union - from the price of a pint in JC’s to funding for a club, society or

campaign. The short, tongue-in-cheek videos are a great way of getting the message across without labouring the point.” Mr Flynn talked about his rise to success and what it was like: “It was enjoyable to say the least. It actually gave me a chance to throw cups, fall off trees and scream at the front of Fulton House. “Working with Jon May was a good experience and he deserves a lot of credit for filming, scripting and putting the videos together. I hope to do more about the elections, Varsity and more!” Luke James, outgoing President commented how any publicity of the elections to the average student is a good thing: “As we’ve seen with the university memes pages comedy is an extremely effective way of communicating. “It’s tough to find original ways to cover elections that happen every year but the Waterfront is achieving that and I know there’s more to come. “It does help that you have someone who looks and sounds a bit like David Mitchell.” Quiz the Candidates took place on Friday just gone and Chris copresented this with Gary Lulham (Manager of the Wonky Sheep) and has become the face and voice of this year’s election.


02 I ELECTION SPECIAL

thewaterfront 213 19.03.12

PRESIDENT Mitch Theaker

PRESIDENT Tom Upton

As SU General Secretary, I know that a lot needs to change. Student Revolution: ‘The Student Review’ puts students at the heart of everything we do and makes sure that our Union is FOR students. Your Degree: No hidden costs. No contact time cuts, and fully resourced careers advisors. Your Services: I’ll ensure a supported advice centre, a letting agency targeting bad landlords, and stronger bars. Your Media: A Union TV and media team will ensure you don’t miss any activities. “Swansea ‘til I die..”: Lifetime Membership means you can always come back to your Union.

Vote Tom Upton #1 for President. Over the past four years I have been a student, society committee member, member of students’ union staff and since July 2011, your Societies and Services Officer. This year I am running to be President of our Students’ Union to put Swansea firmly on the map as the Best Welsh University Experience. If elected, I will implement the following strategies: • Re-structuring the services your Union provides. • Creating our first Union Alumni Association. • Introducing 24 Hour Online Votes for Student Forums. • Defending Student-Lead Activities and your Free Time.

SOCIETIES & SERVICES Tom Giffard

SOCIETIES & SERVICES Owain Harries

Divas has seen its best days, that’s why, if elected, I promise to lead the way to fight for a modern renovation that would cut the queue at Tooters and reinvigorate Saturday nights on campus! I also promise to launch a Re-Freshers Fayre after the January exams to allow people to become more involved in societies, and make ‘Give it a Go Week’ work. I will also lead a campaign that fights for fairer pricing at the Union-owned Spar stores on Campus, Brynmill and at the Student Village. Keep Calm and Love Life. Vote Tom for Societies and Services.

Having been on the exec and various committees, I pledge: Smartphone app - Societies updates, union news or deals in our shops, the easiest way to stay updated! Massive events - Increased funding to societies working together or in the community. Advertising societies - Society promotion points across campus, reaching out to more students. Renovating the SU - Creating a student focused Union building, prioritising societies for available space. Travel shop online- A more accessible Travel Shop to students, also ensuring funding going back to services like the Advice Centre and Nursery.

SOCIETIES & SERVICES Joshua Hayman

SOCIETIES & SERVICES Martha Kiff

During my time at Swansea, I have been very involved in the Students’ Union, particularly in societies. Through my experiences of being on the society committees of Xtreme Radio and RAG, and working for the Union as a techie and in JC’s, I believe that I have a comprehensive understanding of how the Union can improve the university experience for as many students as possible. If elected I will implement the following strategies: • Organise a part-time student job fayre • Revamp Divas Nightclub • Improve training and introduce rewards for societies Vote Josh #1 for Societies and Services!

I have held positions on 3 society committees, and these responsibilities and experiences have taught me what it means to run and be part of a society, and they will enable me to make a difference. If elected I will: 1. Improve communications between societies and Ents. 2. Encourage more intersociety activities, so that your members have the best experience they possibly can. 3. Introduce a bi-monthly societies evening. 4. Have a give-it-a-go week after Freshers’ Fayre so that you can try out the societies you want to join before you commit.

SOCIETIES & SERVICES Steve Ralph

SOCIETIES & SERVICES Hamish Simmie

Our Services are run by incredible people; they deserve a lot more press. Whilst doing this, I also want to create an informal forum where Societies and employees of our Union can offer opinions on issues that affect them. I have held numerous positions from Woodside President, to two different positions within the English Society and I sit on the SU Executive board. Each position has allowed me to fairly divide my time which I will bring to this role. I have the experience, I am determined and I am some who truly cares about this Union, OUR Union.

If given the role of Societies and Services Officer I hope to accomplish three broad aims. The first is to promote the benefit of joining societies as a fundamental part of the university experience. The second is to make it easier for individuals to start up their own societies; to facilitate a much easier way to get societies up and running from pen and paper. The final task would be to focus each of the on-campus services towards the interests of the students and staff.

SOCIETIES & SERVICES Dave “Mr T” Townsend

WELFARE Charlotte Britton

Basic Training: – Offering more in-depth training for societies’ committee members incorporating leadership, team building and management training with a chance to gain qualifications. Don’t be a fool, stay in school: – Helping set up links between societies and local schools to develop educational workshops. Tea & Toys: - Reviewing the nursery unit, evaluating its setup, providing social opportunities and developing a support network. Village Image: – Helping develop the presence of societies in the student village with extensive advertisement. Stand proud and be loud: – Offering societies’ equal representation, advertisement and implementing a buy online system for membership.

I’ve been Welfare Officer for a year and I’m a trained counsellor. My priorities: • Better food on campus - we deserve more options, better quality and value for money • Reform SAS Lettings - SAS needs to focus on what students want to be the best letting agent in Swansea • Rate your Landlord & Housing Advice Fayre - Tell us your experiences so we can give you the information you need. • Money Matters - I’ll focus on budgeting advice and ways to avoid credit cards & loans. Charlotte Britton #1 for Welfare! www.charlotteb4welfare.com


www.waterfrontonline.co.uk

ELECTION SPECIAL I 03

WELFARE Ceejay John King

SPORTS Dan “Flash” Ryan-Lowes

Of the People! For the People!! By the People!!! As an international student here in Swansea, I have experienced challenges, and finding solutions to resolve these issues and making student life easier are my primary concerns. I am an easygoing person, honest and loyal, I will make possible a steady conducive atmosphere in welfare for every student in Swansea University. If elected, I will channel my efforts towards: Walk-in counselling Issues surrounding Students with Disabilities Flexible/Easier fee-payment Free welfare Seminar Tackling student accommodation issues

1. Increasing the number of Varsity teams including International students & students with disabilities. 2. Taster lessons for female & international students looking to get into sport. Different sports each week. 3. Creating sub-committees to the management structure and pre summer-captains training. 4. Making the membership relevant to you with added benefits/ incentives, including gym memberships & local deals. 5. Sponsorship within the SU. Volunteering in the local community which is beneficial for CVs, individuals & clubs 6. Campaigns to highlight key issues in sport; homophobia, disability & sexism

SPORTS Zak Shayler

SPORTS Imogen Stanley

If elected as sports officer I aim to take sport at Swansea forward. To increase the self-sufficiency of clubs and seek greater sponsorship from outside agents is imperative. This can be done by promoting the university’s reputation via social media forms by introducing the likes of Twitter to an outdated Athletic Union. To promote Varsity and increase the amount of teams competing is one of my main focusses. I will also devote equal amounts of time to each sport, regardless of size, membership or popularity. I want to create an environment where sporting excellence can flourish, it can be done!

I believe my experience as a club captain and member of the AU exec; competing, running and organising sport at Swansea University, has given me the essential skills to ease the transition of sport into the Student Union. At the heart of my campaign I will encourage the growth of small clubs, and provide initiatives to larger clubs to develop opportunities such as freshers’ teams. Finance and accounts will be more accessible for clubs. These are exciting times for Swansea sport, and I believe I can give every student a better sporting and social experience. Sport is Safe with Stanley.

EDUCATION Ian Morgan

EDUCATION Zahid Raja

Hi, I’m Ian and I’m standing to be your Education Officer intending to change and make your student experience the best it can be. My diverse experience in Swansea University gives me the best knowledge to represent you all. If elected, I will: Review the input that you have in your degree, giving you more opportunities to have a say. Prioritise employability giving you the best chance possible following your degree. Revolutionise the support you need from referencing, personal tutors and timetabling. For a Driven, Dedicated and Determined voice, vote Ian Morgan #1 for Education.

Get Experience: I’ve written national policy on saving student bursaries, and currently work to improve your educational experience through NUS. My priorities: • Get learning – Train course representatives and introduce student led teaching awards to encourage better teaching. I’ll increase support for course societies, and improve feedback. • Get Resources – Introduce an online computer availability map, host monthly debates with inspiring speakers, get more key texts and access to more online journals. • Get Employed – I’ll expand the careers services & extend it to recent graduates and email you weekly job, internship & work experience updates. www.zahidraja.co.uk

WOMEN’S Millie Balkan

WOMEN’S Izzy Granville

My name is Millie Balkan. I’m a second year law student, I spend most of my time in the kitchen; a woman’s natural habitat. I love to cook, clean, bake, iron, cross stitch, knit and, most importantly – tend to my other half’s every need. Looking after sick animals is also a passion of mine as I just adore cute and fluffy creatures! Bless their souls. If elected I intend to impart the virtues of my feminine attributes to women across campus regardless of bust size, hip size or shoe size. No one will leave my office without a sandwich.

Women’s officer is not just about women! It’s linked with all liberation campaigns. • To work closely with the RNIB Cymru and university to make student experience more accessible for those visually impaired. • Set up groups to discuss issues specific to student minorities, (eg. mature students and female engineers). • Set up groups for women - bringing together those from all backgrounds to discuss issues of gender and religion. • Employability conferences specifically aimed at people with disabilities, women and LGBT, focusing on jobs that may appear inaccessible to these groups.

WOMEN’S Pearl Sangha

WOMEN’S Rebecca Warrillow

Extend policy on the liberation issues by working with the officers in order to empower students to have a voice. A priority vote to hear directly from women students on what they want and need from our Union. Group meetings for student parents to ensure that they are not at a disadvantage in any way during their studies. Bringing Reclaim the Night to Swansea to campaign to end violence against women. Secure an interactive “Women’s Page” in the Waterfront to highlight and help women’s issues within the Union. Expand self-defense classes to a broader range of women by having a female instructor.

I’m Becki, a final year student and I’m campaigning to be your students’ union Women’s officer. This coming year I want to expand on existing policies for women’s rights and raise awareness of the women’s officers’ role. I’m going to put into place ways to make the Women’s officer more approachable by including anonymous submission forms. Furthermore, I intend to expand awareness of sexual health, issues concerning body image / healthy eating and safety on nights out, from taxis, cloakrooms and the journey home, whether it is through the park, Brynmill or Uplands. Representing All Women; Vote Becki. Thank you.


04 I ELECTION SPECIAL

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INTERNATIONAL V.R.S.A. Mahaboob Basha

INTERNATIONAL Kayla Bates

I am Mahaboob Basha and I am running to be re-elected as your International Officer. I have thoroughly enjoyed representing international students over the past year, and I want to deliver an improved international student experience: • An International Students’ Forum for all students • Lobbying and campaigning for weekend welfare support • Multi-ethnic events • Visits to places of historical and cultural importance in the UK. • Good communication from the moment students arrive at university • Continue to organise workshops on the essentials for international students

As a participant in an American exchange program with Swansea University, and as a returning postgraduate, I am not only aware of the process and challenges involved with becoming an international student, but also the excitement, opportunities, and diversity Swansea has to offer. This experience and an approachable and outgoing personality make me a great candidate! I propose to: Facilitate efficient integration of all international and overseas students; Support and encourage study placements and exchange programs abroad; Promote access to appropriate accommodation, transport, entertainment, and involvement with the University’s societies and services; Keep all students informed about changes in visa regulations.

E-voting increases campaigns online This will be the second year that voting has taken place online and this means a predictable rise in online campaigning. Matthew Jones, 2nd year War & Society student suggested it might lead to dirty tactics: "Online voting will probably lead to more online campaigning which isn't a good thing as it is much harder to keep it a fair campaign." Amy Moore, 3rd year Law student said: "I hope the online voting will increase interest and encourage more to get involved, but I think nothing with alter the fact the mall is usually a sea of candidates and their campaign teams fighting for your attention!" Students on their year abroad will be pleased to hear all the manifestos, videos and coverage will be also be online meaning they can follow, vote

and track results wherever they are. Luke James, outgoing Students' Union President commented: “Online voting and online campaign means that students can engage in the election in any way they want to now. “Students now have the opportunity to take a look at the policies and visions different candidates are offering in their own time on the internet and the opportunities for candidates and their campaigners to get their message out to students is wider too. “I expect to see the mall full on most of the days as in the past but I think you’ll see some candidates do things entirely differently too. Whoever communicates their message best in any election will win and that’s important because if you can’t communicate with students you’re not going to make a good officer.”

Vote Online www.swansea-union.co.uk/elections2012

Polls open 8am - 8pm

Tues 20th | Wed 21st | Thurs 22nd March

Election BINGO! If you didn’t know already, the elections are here and to liven up what can sometimes can be a quick dash behind Taliesin to avoid the mall so you can get to lectures, we’ve got a helpful game to help pass the time.

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Election Manifestos