Good evening and welcome to this here live blog of them there hustings! We have candidates from all 5 categories here this evening to try and persuade us to vote for them this Thursday. Polling is open from 9am-6pm, and you must be a QMU member to vote. I’m hearing rumours of popcorn in the polling booth this year… Stay tuned for more info.
As with all things QM, the start of this hustings has been delayed. As soon as we’re ready to get going we’ll kick off with the hotly contested Current Student Representative A category. There are 3 seats for 9 candidates. Madness. I can tell you that the row of chairs on the Jim’s Bar stage is as long as I’ve ever seen.
18:12 Hon. Asst. Sec Celia issues a 3 minute warning. Get yourself a pint and be ready to go soon, she says. We’re getting close.
18:17 Celia talks us through the rules and the running order. Each candidate gets 2 minutes to introduce themselves and tell us about their manifestos. After that, it will be opened up for the audience to ask questions. First, questions for all candidates. Then questions for individual candidates. She explains what her intimidatingly slamming the table means, and invites the CSR A candidates to the stage. They are: Noah Cloack, Megan Davies, Mata Durkin, Katie Fannin, George Gillen, Emily Rose, Mike Setchell, Jamie Small and Charlotte Talwar. This is a hella busy stage.
18:19 Noah Cloack. He says that, being here all the time, he sees nothing wrong with the QM, but accepts there must be something. He says there’s a lack of international events at Glasgow Uni and that the QM should do more. Freshers’ Week events were successful so he wants a biweekly event where international students (though not exclusively for international students) can meet, bond, and share cultures. He thinks it would be an opportunity to learn languages. If you vote him number 1 on Thursday, he’ll keep you number 1 all year.
18:22 Katie Fannin. QM is her home away from home and she wants to give back by joining the Board and improve on what she already thinks is quite good. She wants to work on providing sex education, and more themed music nights. More diverse stuff and more live music. She’d like to improve the committee rooms. She thinks she probably spent too much time here in first year. qmunicate disagrees. There is no ‘too much time in the QM’.
18:24 Charlotte Talwar. She wants to help improve the already good Elephant in the Room campaign. She would like it to reach out to first years to help people who may struggle with loneliness. She particularly wants to set up a safe/quite space in the TV Room on the 3rd floor with beanbags, books and ‘cosy stuff’. She would like the QM and the Board to be there to listen to people who may need someone to talk to. She wants to get involved more in event planning too.
18:26 Megan Davies. She wants to create a regular feedback session one or two afternoons a week where a Board Member could go meet people to hear their ideas in a less formal way. She wants to improve signage in the QM as she found it hard to find her way around the building and know what’s on when. She would like more language societies to use the QM, and would like to work with the Campaigns and Charities (C&C) Committee.
18:28 Emily Rose. She has been on the Board for the past six months. Her last manifesto was C&C based. She runs the Elephant in the Room campaign. They are working on getting good information to give out to people – and particularly the best information possible – and setting up a ‘safe space’ full of soft things during exams, and she’d love to keep doing all that stuff.
18:30 Jamie Small. He thinks the QM should play to its strengths as it has a lot to offer. It may not be able to pull of a sweaty club night in the same way that The Hive can. Qudos is one of the best venues in the West End, perhaps even Glasgow. He thinks that collaboration across committees and with the member, we could much better utilise it. He also says we should remain distinct from the GUU and says he would like to promote that which makes the QM unique. He thinks cross campus communication and transparency can be improved upon. He says ‘With U there can be no QMU’. qmunicate groans.
18:32 Mike Setchell. Transparency is something he’s keen on. He really likes the new white boards for suggestions, and would like suggestion boxes too. Collaboration with other student bodies, he feels, could be great. He would like a sports day or a fundraising competition between the four bodies. He would like to create an arts festival as a follow up to the upcoming QMU music festival (which we are mad excited for).
18:34 Mata Durkin. Her two main manifesto points are a victim support group and getting inspirational speakers to the Union. She says the best way to deal with being bullied/discriminated against is sometimes to talk about it to people who have also been through it. She would like to set up something like that at the QM. For inspirational speakers, she says that everybody needs a role model. People who have overcome challenges such as discrimination, poverty and even war could be of great help to students.
18:36 George Gillen. He’s a home student, and says that it can be difficult to to get involved in University life for home students. By way of example, he asks the home students in the audience to raise there hands. 3 people do. He would therefore like to reach out to more home students. He also says that he was working the C&C condom booth when somebody made a suggestion to him and he told them about the committee. He would like to raise awareness of the committees. Finally, he would like to make disabled facilities (such as toilets) more visible and accessible.
18:40 Questions for all candidates now. President Sefton shouts abuse at somebody asking a question because he’s rude. Q: what would the candidates do with an unlimited budget?
George – Book loads of quality bands to build on the QM’s musical history and improve disabled access.
Mata – Beyoncé.
Mike – Massive bands would be good. He would like to renovate the entire place, paint it and modernise the whole place. Get JK Rowling down to read some Harry Potter at his art festival.
Jamie – Repaint the QM in QMU Red rather than Weird Blue. Jim’s and Champs look good, and he’d like the rest of the Union to look that good. He’d like to bring in some top quality stand up and do a big charity comedy gig with some big names and local ones.
Emily – Also would like to improve disabled access. Put money in to Elephant in the Room and hire loads and loads of counsellors.
Megan – Renovate the building and put loads of money in to the committees and do what we do but bigger and better. She’d use the money to improve member discounts.
Charlotte – Big bands names and more cash for committees, particularly events. Throw some cash at Magic.
Katie – Agrees with everything already said. More regular things like Red Ribbon Ball to raise money for charity. Free sanitary products would be even better than tax free ones.
Noah – Put the door to Jim’s back where it was. Buy the Boyd Orr and demolish it to improve the view from Scran.
18:47 Q: What would candidates do to fill the hole left by Magic?
Noah – Good culture in the Union. Use international events to draw people in from outside the QM regular crowd.
Katie – Weekly events perhaps don’t work as well. Something different now and again (i.e. themed nights) may be better. Hip-hop, 80s, Jazz etc. We need to maintain the safe, comfortable atmosphere at Magic but mix it up a bit.
Charlotte – Themed nights, fancy dress etc. Not every night but maybe once a month. Smaller bands would be a good way of using the space.
Megan – Focus on what we do well and not try to copy others. We can use Fridays to book bands and for big committee planned events, society balls, inter-society mixers etc. We can do variety and alternative things.
Emily – Open Fridays up to other books. Events committee are looking to do this already, so keep on it.
Jamie – Weekly night not the best for us. Magic perhaps didn’t work because it was unsure of its identity. If we had something that was sure of itself and different from The Hive etc. Catty provides a unique service, so maybe we could try a night somewhere between it and Propaganda.
Mike – Being this far down the running order is tough for him. We can book Qudos out society and external companies. Look beyond Glasgow University. Live bands is what it’s best at so let’s focus on that.
Mata – Also thinks most stuff has been said already. Themed nights and opening it up to other societies etc. Comedy Society in particular would love to do a show in Qudos. More events like Red Ribbon Ball.
George -QMU Live has been great so obviously we’re good at that. That sort of thing would be good. Work more with societies. Play to our strengths and our history.
18:55 Q: What one area of the QM most needs improved and what can we do to improve it?
George – Renovate the place as it looks a bit rubbish. Disabled access also needs to be improved.
Mata – Disabled access. She really likes the QM so finds it hard to pinpoint its problems.
Mike – PR-ing big events is a problem. Push it more and get more modern posters that don’t like quite as cheesy. Get everything sorted, know what we’re doing and start pushing it well in advance.
Jamie – Ground floor and 3rd floor toilets. We all go to the toilet and it wouldn’t hurt to have somewhere nice to go.
Emily – Get more societies (particularly charitable ones) involved in the QM. We could really help them.
Megan – Agrees with Emily. She loves the mad group of ex-Helpers and so on but thinks it might be intimidating for others. She wants to encourage more people to go to committees. We need to reach out to other years as well as first years.
Charlotte – Agrees with Mike on PR. We do a lot that people may be unaware of.
Katie – Her priority would be plugging committees. Particularly important to get first years involved in them so that they can make friends and feel comfortable and at home in the QM.
Noah – Biggest problem is attendance at events. Nothing has been full since Freshers’ Week. With Magic going, we can focus our efforts on other things and getting more people in.
19:03 Q: What’s your favourite Disney film and what did you learn from it that will make you a good Board Member?
Noah – Pocohauntus. Genocide is bad.
Katie – The Lion King. Don’t trust people with scars on their eyes.
Charlotte – Mulan because Girl Power!
Megan – Hercules. (I missed that. Sorry Megan, and sorry readers.)
Emily – Robin Hood. Be good to the little guy.
Jamie – Mulan. You don’t always have to listen to your parents. You can take advice from Eddie Murphy too.
Mike – The Little Mermaid. You should always follow your dreams even if they have negative side-effects.
Mata – The Princess and the Frog. Work hard to achieve your dreams, but not too hard.
George – (I wasn’t paying attention. Sorry lads!)
19:07 Q: What traditions do we have that you don’t like? What should we stop doing?
George – There’s nothing much he doesn’t like. That’s why he’s on stage running for board.
Mata – She has no idea either. She would like people to stop giving her messy bombs when she comes in as she doesn’t drink, but it’s not a QM specific problem.
Mike – He would like people to stop slagging off the GUU. They are our rivals, but he thinks we can work together.
Jamie – Agrees with Mike and thinks we should work together as students. We don’t have to identify ourselves as ‘the alternative Union’ and he’d like the QM to be it’s own place with it’s own identity.
Emily – Chanting is fun but slagging other bodies is a bit much. The Board flat is also a tip. (qmunicate can confirm this. It’s a shitehole)
Megan – It’s a bit cliquey. We all have a cracking time during Freshers’ and so on, but we could try to be more inclusive to everybody.
Charlotte – DJ Toast needs to go.
Katie – PR is too wordy. There are way too many words on the PR, but she thinks it’s a bit nit-picky. Also, the Board Room table is huge and takes up most of the room.
Noah – Never get rid of Guinness again.
19:12 Q: How, specifically, would you improve PR?
Noah – More of it everywhere. Some buildings on campus don’t like it, but we need to get stuff elsewhere outside this building. Improve our social media presence. Get the message out that way too as it’s inexpensive and efficient.
Katie – Much more online PR. In-building PR is too wordy. Some sort of timetable somewhere in the building with what’s on on any given week.
Charlotte – Social media presence. A timetable for the committees. Promote committees more during Freshers’ Week itself.
Megan – Use the website more. Updates from the committees and what they’re up to at the moment. Not enough QM PR in other buildings. More, but not so much that we annoy people.
Emily – Put wordy PR on the back of toilet doors. Make PR that people want to take home. People keep stealing funny signs, so maybe make signs funnier. (qmunicate would like to see more banterous signs)
Jamie – Greater level of continuity between PR. Promote one single image of the QM in everything that we do. Social media again. Go to halls more often and outside Freshers’ Week to let people know we are still here.
Mike – A dedicated PR team may be a good idea. Get out there and go up to halls more.
Mata – We did well at halls during Freshers’. If we do that more and communicate with halls managers more we can improve what we do. Social media is also important.
George – Not only facebook, twitter and so on. Use other things like the snapchat (@qmunion, get it added!) more. Get to first years early on about our regular events.
19:20 Q: If you were asked what makes us different from the GUU, what would you say?
George – He had assumed based on the description given to him that he would like the GUU more. Obviously he was wrong. He would tell people to try both and decide for themselves.
Mata – The QM has more of a history of music.
Mike – The QM doesn’t care who you are and loves everybody. Come and enjoy what we do.
Jamie – It’s less to do with individuals and more the atmosphere. It’s more welcoming and open. The GUU seems like stuff is going on behind closed doors.
Emily – We do more charity, they do debates. We do music, they do clubnights. She would recommend going to both though.
Megan – We have a great history of live music. How simple it is to get involved by just becoming a member and strolling into a committee.
Charlotte – Try both. We actively try to be more accepting and welcoming. You can be yourself here.
Katie – Events. Live music, charitable events. Seems we do them more. It’s a more warm and accepting environment. Not to suggest the GUU isn’t, but that’s her experience.
Noah – How accepting the QMU is. Somebody will come speak to you. It took him 40mins to get a pint in the GUU once.
19:27 Q: WHich of the other candidates would you vote for and why? (this is a boaby of a question)
Noah – Everybody’s great but I’d say Jamie. I like the idea of getting the student bodies to work together more.
Katie – Emily. Caring for our members through Sexpression and Elephant in the Room is really important.
Charlotte – Emily. She’s doing an great job with Elephant in the Room.
Megan – Emily. She’s clearly passionate about the Union and has done a lot of great work this past 6 months.
Emily – She hasn’t decided. She will base her decision on hustings. (somebody shouts cop-out. Boooo.)
Jamie – Everybody is great and shows a lot of passion but he’d vote Noah. Getting more international students involved isn’t something he’s seen a lot of and he thinks tehre should be more of that.
Mike – Emily was his first thought because student well-being is a huge part of university. However, he’d go George because he wants to improve disabled access and get everybody who wants to be here, in here.
Mata – Torn between George and Emily. Disabled access is very important, and she thinks Emily has done a great job.
George – Thinks that whatever three people are elected will be great. He also would vote for Emily because of the work she’s done with Elephant in the Room and proven how good she can be over the past 6 months.
Clearly Emily gets the candidates’ vote. Does she get yours? Hmmmmmm…
19:34 Questions for individual candidates! First is for Charlotte. A lot of fancy dress themed events in the past have had poor attendance. How would she get beyond that and convince people to dress up?
Charlotte – Broad themes that don’t require people to spend a lot on a costume. We can use more money to promote them if we don’t have a weekly clubnight.
19:36 Question for Emily. What you’ve done on Board has been great with Elephant in the Room etc. but what would be different being a Board Member than an ordinary committee member?
Emily – It would be helpful to be in contact with the Board to get help, PR, and more money if possible. Being on Board would cut out the middle man. She will keep running it if she’s not elected, however.
19:37 Question for Mike. Can you elaborate on your Art Festival?
Mike – A few days. Any format at all be it poetry, stage shows, comedy, anything at all. Use all the time and space we have available to have loads of stuff on.
19:38 Question for Noah. Can you do a magic trick for us?
This is really tough to blog but rest assured it was phenomenal. One minute magic tricks, cards involved, two red queens with somebody’s card in the middle. I have no idea.
19:41 Question for Megan. Can you tell us more about what you would do with C&C?
Megan – She would like to get more people in the committee to help do all the little things. She would like to push for more money for the big things to make them better. The more money goes in, the more money comes out.
19:42 Question for Jamie. Can you elaborate on cross campus collaboration?
Jamie – We have four distinct student bodies who all want the best for all students at Glasgow Uni. He thinks all four bodies face similar issues and it would be great if we could all work together on it, and not just Executive members but all Board Members.
19:43 Question for Mata and George. How would you revive Unplugged?
George – Use social media to promote it more. There are so many ways of getting your message across (e.g. snapchat), and we should be utilising them all more.
Mata – PR is very important. She knows a lot of people who are unaware that it exists that may be interested in going. Maybe incentivise it now and again.
19:46 Question for Megan. How will you encourage people to engage with the Board?
Megan – Having people in the building in person would be really helpful. Push it, like everything else, through social media.
19:47 Question for Noah. How would you get international questions better integrated in both Union and wider Glasgow culture?
Noah – The first thing you think of is to join your subject society, who are great, but they don’t quite do enough. We could work with them more and supplement what they do.
19:49 Question for Katie. How would you go about making more diverse music at clubnights happen?
Katie – Research DJs and work closely with the events committee.
It’s 19:50 and we are done with CSR A! Next up is CSR B, but not before we take a 15 minute break. This blogger needs a pint. Breaks are the best. For those of you who are interested, we’re on around 3,500 words of blog so far. I have essays to write.
20:10 We’re back with CSR B. There are 3 candidates for 2 seats. On stage now we have Chris Ashforth, Ciaran McQueen and Chloe Tobin-Kemmer. Same rules as before, Chris up first.
20:11 Chris Ashforth. He thinks all the people in the QM are great, but there needs to be more of them. He wants to make a PR Committee with one delegate from each committee who work on it and make it all work together in a cohesive manner. He also wants more (i.e. at least some) live sport shown in Champs. At the moment, you have to go elsewhere. He wants to give people to opportunity to watch what they want here by letting them choose.
20:14 Chloe Tobin-Kemmer. Mental health is something she feels passionate about. She thinks the QM is somewhere where people can talk about mental health. She wants to work with Elephant in the Room and would like to introduce regular stress workshops. She would like to improve the wi-fi by creating a separate wi-fi network for technical things like Swipii, and leave the other for punters.
20:16 Ciaran McQueen. He would like to work closely with the events committee and help them raise the QM’s live reputation to that of the ABC, the Art School and the Academy through his knowledge of the Glasgow music scene. He would like to improve third floor signage and put a sign on the board room door with times of every committee. He would also like to see more diverse, eclectic and interesting music at clubnights.
20:18 Questions for all candidates! First question is what do people not like, and what would they like to change?
Ciaran – Jim’s is hella warm. Make it less warm. Tidy the Board flat.
Chloe – Change all PR to photos of herself with comic sans captions (she says this is a joke, but is it all that bad? Is comic sans that bad? Discuss). Get the word out about committees more.
Chris – The QM is not perfect and there is actually a lot wrong. Attendance is way too low. We need to accept that the QM is a business and get more people in the bars. We don’t make enough money outside of Freshers’ Week.
20:21 All non-first year CSR candidates are Freshers Helpers. How do we get more other people to run, and what is your favourite Pokémon?
Chris – (I missed the Pokémon, sorry). Get more people in general and get them liking the QM, and we’ll eventually get them running. Tell people that you don’t have to be a Helper to run. Make people aware that if they have good ideas, they can succeed.
Chloe – People at committees are usually Helpers. If more people went to committees, they may get involved in Board more.
Ciaran – Nidoqueen is his favourite pokémon because it’s closest to his name. He says he was more of a Digimon guy and the crowd oooohs. (qmunicate likes both equally.) He thinks word of mouth is very important and if we tell people how good the QM is, how good committees are and how good Board is then people will get involved.
20:25 Q: Describe Max Sefton (QMU President) in 3 words or less, none of them can be nice.
Ciaran – Current QM President.
Chloe – She finds it hard to not be nice about people. ‘He is alright.’
Chris – Interesting fellow. Bananas.
20:26 Q: Why should we vote for you in 3 words? (a lot of 3s involved…)
Chris – Sports, Different, Fun
Chloe – Graphic design, mentalhealth (which is now one word)
Ciaran – I love you.
20:27 Q: What would you do to get more non-freshers’ helpers voting?
Ciaran – More PR outside the QM. We can big-up the elections more. Word of mouth is important again.
Chloe – Some sort of event where we can talk about why elections matter and what makes them important. Talk about what student politics can do for people.
Chris – Get more people in the building and doing more stuff in general. Talk to non-members more and reach out to them. Open voting up to all students at UofG, rather than just QM members perhaps.
20:31 Q: 6 months is not actually that long. Can you tell us how you will achieve what you want to do in that time?
Chris – He thinks his objectives are fairly modest and should be very doable in that time. He would like to run again at the end of his term if he does well and people think he does well too.
Chloe – Says it’s all about prioritising. She thinks that she can put a lot of energy in to what she wants to do with Elephant in the Room and then somebody can carry that on after her term.
Ciaran – He says he’s here all the time so it shouldn’t be a problem getting work done. Signage is easily done. Live music is something he wants to get the ball rolling on before somebody else can take over when he finishes.
20:34 Q: What is your best personal quality and how will it benefit the QM?
Ciaran – He is friendly and will talk to anybody so it should be good for helping people and talking to them, finding out what issues they have.
Chloe – She likes to think she’s approachable and friendly and wants people to feel comfortable talking to her.
Chris – He has no shame at all and will do anything to help the QM regardless of how embarrassing it may be.
20:36 Q: How are you going to boost ‘QM love’ halfway through the year? (when asked to define ‘QM Love,’ apparently it is getting people to like the QM)
Chris – We need to push that the QM doesn’t require you to be a nerd or really indie or hipster to enjoy. If we tell people they can just turn up for a pint, that’s cool.
Chloe – Open up to a broader range of things. We need to explain what it is that makes the QM great and be specific about it.
Ciaran – Dogs. More dogs. Dogs more often. More stuff that is to do with safe and relaxing spaces, helping people with exam stress. Dogs again.
20:39 Q: Would you rather face a tornado full of sharks or a plane full of snakes (but no Samuel L. Jackson), and how would that help you at the QM?
Ciaran – Snakes. He hasn’t seen the film but he’d hide in a toilet. He asks if the snakes are angry. Everybody says yes and points out how foolish it is to hide in a toilet when there are snakes on a plan. He needs to see that film.
Chloe – Snakes on a plane. You can’t kill or outrun a tornado. She may be able to kill some of the snakes, however. That means she can take on any challenge, such as people vomiting on the stairs, because she killed snakes on a plane.
Chris – He’s hella scared of snakes, so the tornado. He says once you’ve seen a tornado full of sharks, nothing scares you.
(can we call it what it is? it’s a fucking sharknado. tornado full of sharks, pfft)
20:42 Q: What’s your favourite event at the QM ever and why?
Chris – thatdrummerthatdj because that bass.
Chloe – Was also gonna say that. All of her freshers’ week was great and made her feel a lot less scared about university.
Ciaran – Unknown Mortal Orchestra. He wants bands of that calibre here a lot more regularly.
20:44 Questions for individual candidates! For Chris, how would you decide what sports to show in Champs?
Chris – Online poll maybe, or use a blackboard. If there are two sports on, show both. Some sort of voting system.
20:45 Question for Chloe. How are you going to implement the changes you want to see in Elephant in the Room?
Chloe – It would be in addition to the campaign. Having an outside communicator for people who want to do workshops.
20:47 Question for Chris. What middle ground between niche alternativeness and lad-culture would you like to see?
Chris – Anything at all. It shouldn’t be one or the other. The two bars can have both on, and we can offer both things. People can choose.
20:48 Question for Chris. We do show sports. Do you mean we need to publicise it more?
Chris – We do need to publicise it more, but we also need to show more. For example, we need to show more Champions League football. We can have a blackboard outside and post online with what we’re showing. The fact we can give people a choice of what to watch may encourage them to come as well.
20:50 Question for Ciaran. How do you want to get bands to come to us first?
Ciaran – Improving out reputation. He would like to do that by getting more, better bands in. He thinks he can do that as he has industry contacts.
20:51 Question for Ciaran. How will you get more bands in?
Ciaran – I will work with events committee. I think emphasising our history (Nirvana, Queen etc.) can really help.
20:52 Question for Ciaran. That’s a big individual undertaking. How will you do it and how will it continue after your time on Board?
Ciaran – Publicising committees more will help once he gets the ball rolling. Actually getting bands in, his contacts will help. He feels like George Osbourne giving the same answer a lot.
20:54 Question for Chloe. How do you propose we support people regularly given that we are volunteers and not necessarily qualified?
Chloe – There may be people going through similar issues. Gatherings of people who are comfortable talking about it and know what they’re going through can really help.
20:54 Question for Chloe. How do you feel about collaborating with student societies on mental health issues?
Chloe – She’s all for it. We can do bigger, better things with other groups.
CSR B are done and dusted. Nice one troops. Candidates for First Year CSR A are invited to the stage. We have Nour El-Issa, Jamie Holyer, Cameron Logan and Kaisa Saarinen.
20:57 Cameron Logan. The first people he met at University were QMU Helpers, who he says were very helpful. He says that as a first year it can be difficult to feel comfortable getting involved in committees. He wants to make them even more first year friendly and accessible to ensure their voices are heard. He says that there is an element of anti first year discrimination which he wants to work to eradicate.
20:59 Kaisa Saarinen. She says the QM already feels like a second home for her. She would like to get involved in event planning. She thinks we can make events better and promote local bands and comedians, and have more events like the film festival Exposure. She would like to see the QM get a microwave somewhere in the building for people to use and bring a packed lunch on to campus. She would like the QM to be more inclusive and open.
21:01 Jamie Holyer. He wants everybody to have the opportunities that he has had to get involved at the QM. He wants to help run and maintain, as well as improve, the QM. He wants everybody to be able to come here and listen to music they enjoy by having surveys and allow students to request bands. He would also like to see more society fundraising events, students fundraising on their own, or suggesting more events for us to do.
21:03 Nour El-Issa. He wants to see the QM change into somewhere where people go to get their cultural fix for the day. He would like to promote local bands more and use social media more. He would like to create a reading room somewhere, though he recognises that this may be ambitious. Rather than being the ‘alternative union’ he would like to see it become the cultural hub of Glasgow University campus.
21:06 Questions for all candidates. Questioner asks if he can have a first to buzz in can answer, Hon. Asst. Sec Celia says stop complicating things. In any case, he asks what the QMU starter Pokémon is. There’s a lot of shouting, I don’t know what anybody says. Who cares. Charmander is mine.
21:07 Q: How would you get feedback from first years specifically?
Cameron – Speak to them directly. Ask them what they want to see. Speak to them openly. He says he would do that.
Kaisa – Have some sort of survey online for people to name bands they’d like to see.
Jamie – Find out what bands people like and what they want. Talk to them directly. There should be a quick way to do it, not a really long survey. A 1-5 rating scale for how much people enjoyed an event.
Nour – A lot of people talk about events in halls. They often want to know what’s going on. There’s not much else we need to do, just ensure we listen to them and keep an eye out. If the Art School, for example, does something well, we can learn from that.
21:10 Q: What was the first thing you loved about the QM?
Nour – First, the free gig night that was free than most gigs he paid for apparently! Second, on that night he bumped in to a helper who told him about Publications committee and was sold. (Thanks Nour, qmunicate is glad you like it!)
Jamie – He got the impression that the QM was very accepting from Helpers which he really liked.
Kaisa – She lost her wallet on the bus from the airport to her halls. Some QM Helpers helped her deal with that throughout that weekend. (She got it back on Monday, so all’s good.) She also loved the white t-shirt party.
Cameron – Some helpers helped move him in to halls, and then when he met them again the next day he really liked the sense of community.
21:13 Q: What do you think we need to change about the QM?
Cameron – For specific events like Unplugged we need more people to come. We should get in touch with societies and so on and get them more involved in certain events.
Kaisa – More people should be at events. Also more member discounts, and more good music. More interesting events.
Jamie – Attendance is an issue. We should bring back the headphone disco. One thing every week may not be the answer, but a variety of things.
Nour – Take a more business orientated approach to what we do. He doesn’t know if there’s much difference really between Jim’s and Champs. He thinks we should be more interesting and if something isn’t good, axe it.
21:17 Q: Which candidate would you least like to fight?
Cameron – You
Kaisa – She would rather not fight anybody ever
Jamie – There’s a mystery about Kaisa that scares him
Nour – There’s an intrinsic optimism about Kaisa that scares him
(Kaisa’s scaring the opposition, apparently…)
21:18 Questions for individual candidates. First up for Cameron, what do you mean by ‘pro-discriminative vocalisation of first years’?
Cameron – He explained this earlier and would like a
21:20 Question for Jamie. What charitable societies do you want to work with?
Jamie – We can use lots of societies to improve what we do for charity. Any societies, not just charity ones.
21:21 Question for Nour. How should we improve qmunicate’s online presence, and how would tyou work with the online editors?
Nour – It already has a very strong online presence. Other online publications tend to market themselves better and we can learn from them a lot. A few small changes would make a big difference, such as viral marketing.
Q: Would you push for increased funding for qmunicate?
Nour – Definitely. He really likes the publications committee and would definitely pursue more money for it.
21:24 Question for Kaisa. On the microwave, how would you ensure that that doesn’t detract from our catering income?
Kaisa – She thinks that people would still buy coffees and so on, and may not bring a packed lunch every day. She doesn’t think it would have too great an impact.
21:25 Question for Nour. Elephant in the Room is looking to set up a stress-free room. Could that be something you work on in relation to your reading room plan?
Nour – Yes. He wasn’t aware of that plan but would like to do that. What sets it aside from the library is that it would be a less tense atmosphere.
21:26 Question for Nour. Would you like to see tech team do tech for big bands?
Nour – Really big bands probably have their own sound guys so we could use tech team whenever possible and appropriate.
Another short break before the final two categories: First Year CSR B and Former Student Member! I’m gonna go stretch my legs and get another pint. Monday nights.
First Year CSR B! We have two candidates for one seat and they are Julia Mark and Stella Sewell. On your marks, get set, go!
21:45 Julia Mark. She’s a home student and, as a result, can’t go to events that finish beyond midnight. The only weekly event starting before 8pm is FUQ. She wants to help ensure that home students can enjoy the social side of Uni, just like everybody else. She says that while big things are important, so are little things, like too many sandwiches with mayo on and not enough veggie options. She wants to make the QM better for all.
21:47 Stella Sewell. She wants to have mobile phone charging points in the Union so that people don’t have to walk home at night without a fully charged phone. She also thinks that the food at the Union is perhaps too expensive and would like to see cheaper options – things like Pot Noodles and so on.
21:49 Questions for both candidates. What can the QM do to make events more accessible an appealing to home students?
Julia – Since Magic’s demise, we could use Fridays to create an event that is more home student friendly. For example, weekly heats for Glasgow Uni’s Got Talents.
Stella – If we advertise the space more as somewhere to sit and study during they day. The idea of a reading room is a good one two.
(Turns out Julia and Stella live near each other as they are both home students. That’s a delightful coincidence.)
21:51 Q: What do we need to change?
Julia – The music in Jim’s and Champs is sometimes too loud when it isn’t particularly full, making it impossible to have a conversation.
Stella – Too many of the night time events are too drinking orientated, so we could advertise non-alcoholic options more.
21:53 Q: What new event should the QM put on, and what is your ringtone?
Julia – Her phone is always just on vibrate. She’s not sure what her ringtone is. As for an event, regular heats for Glasgow Uni’s Got Talent.
Stella – More kareoke. (I didn’t get what her ringtone is. Sorry all)
21:54 Q: How can you make the QM more attractive to first years? What have you heard from first years about the QM?
Julia – A lot of her friends are already QM people. PR everywhere is a good idea. People use the buildings when they have classes nearby, so PR around there could help.
Stella – She also has QM pals so hasn’t heard anything bad. More study spaces is something, again, which she feels we should work on.
21:56 Q: What is your favourite childhood TV show and what did you learn from it that you can use in the QM?
Julia – Sesame Street. It taught her the alphabet and to treat everybody as equals.
Stella – Redwall, which is about mice who are priests (what?! yes please!). It taught her that even the smallest person can be a big hero. (the audience awwwwwws)
21:57 Q: What would your Raven warrior name be?
Julia – Curly haired devil, she says, admitting that she’s never actually seen it.
Stella – Likewise doesn’t think she’s seen it. Sunshine Sparkleface would be her name.
21:58 Question for Julia. What home student events would she put on/how would she adapt current events?
Julia – Make things earlier in the evening. Maybe some sort of primary school disco-type thing.
Big round of applause for Julia and Stella and we go straight on to Former Student Member, featuring Andrew McAllister and Yasmynn Lloyd. Yasmynn cannot be with us so her proposer Lucy Hornsby will speak on her behalf. They are competing for one seat.
22:01 Andrew – He is handed a shot of tequila. He would like to make signing up for life membership easier as he says that he found it a faff. He would like more life member engagement in event planning, perhaps through speaking to the Whisky Club and others who have succeed there. He is glad to see that art is becoming a bigger thing at the QM and would like to help with that. He would like to assist a CSR in working with the Honorary Secretary. He then does the shot of tequila.
22:03 Yasmynn (through Lucy) – Yasmynn thinks that recent graduates are easily targeted and we should do more to engage them. As Honorary Secretary last year, she believes she understands the system well and can help a lot. She would like to address the idea of ‘hack culture’.
22:05 Questions for all candidates. Both of you have been on board. What was your greatest achievement, and what was you biggest failure?
Yasmynn (through Lucy) – She was events convenor. Lucy points out she is not Yas.
Andrew – Made some kickass magazines. His biggest failure is that what he did didn’t cement itself properly and trailed off when he came off board.
22:07 Q: What can we offer life members?
Andrew – Reduced prices on drinks. Being a part of the Union is good, but he’s still figuring it out.
Yasmynn/Lucy – Life members often have good ideas and it’s important to remember they may have been through a lot of this already and can help us.
22:09 Q: The FSM is intended to advise the rest of the Board. What problems have we had before that we’re still dealing with?
Andrew – Getting a clubnight to work. It’s quite difficult. Cross-committee collaboration has been spoken about before and he’d like to help facilitate that.
Yasmynn/Lucy – The ‘hack’ problem is that we lose a lot of people who could be useful by labelling them hacks. She could also help with the membership system.
22:11 Q: How active are you going to be, given you have jobs now?
Andrew – He hopes to be at every board meeting. May not make it to committees but would like to help CSR Committees and duty board.
Yasmynn/Lucy – Again, reminds us she’s not Yas, but assures us she is a hard worker and would do everything she can.
22:12 Q: What role should the FSM play and why should we keep it?
Andrew – Somebody needs to represent the life membership, and it needs to be distinct from other board positions.
Yasmynn/Lucy – They should be targeting recent graduates and offer advice.
22:14 Q: Do you think there should still be a fee for life membership?
Andrew – The fee must exist for some reason. We need to cover costs somehow. If it were free, would we make the money back through more people joining? He says he would like to discuss it with the executive.
Lucy wouldn’t like to comment too much as she is unaware of what Yasmynn would say. She is not Yas.
22:16 Questions for individual candidates now. First up, one for Andrew. The life membership database isn’t good and not many people open emails we send out. How would you improve that?
Andrew – The database has always been bad. We still need to send these emails, even if they aren’t opened.
22:18 Question for Yasmynn. What would you bring to the Board that you didn’t do as Honorary Secretary last year?
Yasmynn/Lucy – She would like to help the current Honorary Secretary fix the database.
22:20 Question for Andrew. Would you like to explain full committee training?
Andrew – He worked on this during his time as a CSR. People at committees would learn design technology through publications committee for example, and he would like to see that continue. He would like it to be more formalised.
22:20 Question for Yasmynn. If membership is a problem, is that a rolling vs. year on year problem?
Yasmynn/Lucy – No. It’s a problem with the software and how we input members to it.
The Honorary Assistant Secretary thanks everybody for coming and notes that it has been super long. She tells everybody to vote and make sure they’re all members. You have to be a member to vote.
22:22 And so ends the 2015 Autumn By-Election Hustings! My arm is crazy sore, I would like to have more Tennent’s, and I am no closer to knowing who to vote for. Mad props to all candidates in all constituencies for being good eggs. Everybody, get down on Thursday and vote. Hopefully this comprehensive (and long) live blog has helped you decide who you think is worthy of your vote. Engage in the democratic process, and I’ll see you around. Peace out xoxo