February 02, 2005

Campaign Diary: First day of polling

Today was probably the longest day so far. I was on campus by about 8.30 and didn't get home till 10.30. In between was almost solid campaigning.

The polls opened today, so if you haven't already, please do vote.

I think I managed to visit Arthur Vick, Tocil, The MBA Teaching Centre and many more Westwood blocks today, but my memory is starting to become filled with corridors of doors and I could have been anywhere.

Like I've been saying all campaign, by the time I get home in the evenings I'm exhausted and the funny deserts me for a more suitable host.

He always comes crawling back though.


- 9 comments by 1 or more people Not publicly viewable

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  1. I would vote if only someone could convince me that a student union, somewhere, anywhere is actually a worthwhile contribution to university life.

    Anyone else feel like me?

    02 Feb 2005, 23:12

  2. Adam, I assume you're not a member of any societies or sports clubs, never eat/drink at the Union, never go to any Union events, and have never used Advice and Welfare Services (among other things).

    02 Feb 2005, 23:18

  3. You of course assume wrong, but I assume too you were being sarcastic. I do take the point that "Union events" probably wouldn't happen without the Union, but as fasr as I can see there is no reason why the others can't exist without the "union" as an elected body.

    Societes and sports clubs I'm sure could get on just fine without an elected union body and if the "union building" wasn't there for us to eat and drink there would be alternatives. And for reference I haven't (yet) needed to use any Advice or Welface services run by the union or the university. Nothing that the university couldn't have taken care of without the need for a union as far as i can see (excluding union events perhaps).

    02 Feb 2005, 23:22

  4. Possibly the University could provide those services, but we would lose out on several scores: 1.) especially in the case of AWS, it is good to have a service independent of the institution people are likely to be complaining about, 2.) we would lose representation and the ability to lobby the university. Anyway, the original question was essentially 'what has the Union ever done for me?' To which I provided a brief, non-exhaustive answer.

    02 Feb 2005, 23:38

  5. I think it's just nice to have a student body there. I don't really care what it does, because it's never really going to change that drastically anyway, so I just leave it be and enjoy the feeling of political import. It's lovely…

    03 Feb 2005, 00:25

  6. Nick Seagrave

    Firstly sorry Dan for using your blog to answer Adam, but I wanted to reply, it's not intend to be campaigny.

    Basically I just wanted to say to Adam I have got far more out of the Students Union than I have out of my actual degree, far far more. So much so that I would have dropped out almost certainly if I hadn't had the opportunities to do the things I have done, which I wouldn't if the Union hadn't existed as it does now.

    I find it really sad when people are cynical in this way, if the University ran the Union, who would stand up to them when they tried to do things that weren't in our interests. I'm not saying we should be at loggerheads with the University all the time, and believe co-operation is the key in most things, but there must be some body representing students so when on the occasions the University do do things that cross the line we can make our feelings known.

    03 Feb 2005, 02:08

  7. I used to feel much as adam did, rarely making use of union facilities I felt that it didn't really matter to me.
    This year I've become a fair bit more politicised, but am ultimately too lazy to go and search out information on what the union can do for me, but i want it to do something for me. So I've been showing my support for candidates who are proposing greater transparency and publicity of the university's "other" services.

    03 Feb 2005, 08:42

  8. Carly

    Really you can't undervalue representation either, although there isn;t much said about it. There are Union officers on all major university committees and we have says on every major aspect of university life. It really does matter! We are there when the rents are set, the timetables compiled, the assesment methods changed, the policies written and when/if warwick goes to asia. We have it justified to us, and we stand up and say if we don't think students would be happy.

    Its hard to communicate all of these things, we talk to the boar about as much as possible and put it in the word. The thing is the changes aren't always sexy! I think Kat (pres. candidate's) idea of blogging the briefing emails we send round the officers after these meetings is a good one.

    Some changes we have already made to university decisions – human rights issues are now a major consideration of any campus in singapore, the national student survey is now being treated with some skepticism, the university is now as concerned about international student visa charges as us, we are working together towards a change in the cannabis policy, greater priority is being given to catering facilities at westwood, we have stood up for our drinks prices, and our right to give impartial housing advice to around 2000 students a year in AWS, secured extra support for students immigrating, set up a structure to greatly improve funding for sports for next year, deciding the future of retail on campus, all old campus kitchens will be refurbished soon, fairtrade campus, thought is being given to a campus cycle pool for getting from one end to another…

    03 Feb 2005, 09:06

  9. Dan would also update on the blogs, as he said in his manifesto, and he would do it with a far superior technical ability than Kat (Just a quick last-minute plug)!.

    03 Feb 2005, 10:12


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