Hi, we’re Eleanor and Carrie, and we’ll be covering the Queen Margaret Union’s General Elections Hustings in Bar. This evening we’ll be hearing from all candidates, except those running for the Vice President and President positions. They will all have a chance to put forward their manifestos and to answer audience questions. Check out the QMU instagram to submit questions.
18:29 First up we have First Year Current Student Representative A. There is one seat and one candidate – Cailean Campbell.
CC: Attracted to inclusivity of QMU. Focus on gender-neutral bathrooms, accessibility for disabled members, diverse acts performing.
Q: What is your favourite thing about the QMU?
CC: Diversity. The members and haw different they are.
Q: What snacks would you buy as a lefty from the snacks budget every week?
CC: Oreos, coke and sandwiches
Q: How do we make sure the first-year members are heard?
CC: Have lots of first-year students
Q: Why do you want to be a CSR?
CC: Love the QMU. Wants to be involved in politics.
Q: How will you execute your goal to increase engagement in small events?
CC: Cooperation with all the representatives will develop a good plan.
18:37 Now we have First Year Current Student Representative B. There is two seats and two candidates – Christopher MacNally and Fatima Saeed.
CMN: I am already a class rep for Geography. Got involved through the quizzes, inviting atmosphere. Attend social and C&C.
FS: Studying history and economics. Involved through Elephant in the room, welcoming committee. Motivated to become more involved on the board and the union. Help introduce a program to prevent date rape drugs circulating the university.
Q: What snacks do you buy?
FS: Muffins, biscuits, fingers.
CMN: vegan-friendly chocolate to be inclusive, pringles.
Q: What qualities do you have that would make you a good CSR?
CMN: Great listener. Patient.
FS: Work in a team, hear what everyone has to say. Enthusiastic, friendly, obsessed with cats.
Q: Night or morning shower?
CMN: Morning wakes you up for the day.
FS: Depends on the timetable, if you have a morning lecture I’m not going to get up at 7am to wash my hair.
Q: How would you promote the committees?
FS: Talk to everyone and encourage engagement. Ask friends and peers to take part.
CMN: I had no idea how to get involved at the start. Promoting committees. Hey, nip in!
Q: How would you help with the welfare of students.
CMN: Not that much power as CSR. Welfare is crucial. I am here to listen at the end of the day. Knowing that its there is all the help you can ask for.
FS: Introduction of rape drug detection kit. Increase engagement as people feel safer.
Now we move onto Current Student Representative A. There are three seats and four candidates – Tom Burnip, Miles Grant, He Ng, and Ishanki Mukherjee.
HN: Malaysian. Independent. I want to help everyone, including myself. Enjoy helping others.
TB: Electronic and software engineering. Already on tech team. Spend a lot of time in the union. Want to help expand the live music engagement. Provide more PR.
MG: A lot of activism at the uni. QMU is in a great position to help activists. Place for people to meet and organize safely without feeling under threat.
IM: Love the QMU is so enthusiastic, makes me really excited. Voices are just sounds until they reach the right ears, you can really find your place when you find people like you. I enjoy social events, have them on a larger scale.
Q: What snacks would you by for the committee? IM: Taco kit. Pringles, diet coke. HN: Not a big snack fan, keep myself healthy. I wouldn’t focus much on the snacks part, will focus on more important things.
MG: local Glasgow bakers. Independent shops.
TB: Scones, jam and cream.
Q: Which committee would you choose to be the Lefty.
TB: My plan is to infiltrate the CSRs to be lefty for Tech to stop Alex.
MG: Proud tech team member! To effect change, events or social. C&C would be a great place to absorb activism.
HN: Events is an easy choice for me.
Q: What can you do to help support activism in the university?
IM: Stop using toilet paper, go paperless in board meetings. Raise money for planting trees.
HN: Raise money for a charity. I have big plans, the money should be an issue but we’ll see. Raise money for charity within C&C.
MG: Offer space and a voice for activists. Stage film screenings. Space for Arms Divestment.
TB: Complicated issue. Eliminate disposable cups to make huge environmental change.
Q: Is a jaffa cake a cake or a biscuit?
TB: Cake. It goes hard to soft, not soft to hard.
MG: I visited the jaffa cake factory and they wouldn’t let me inside. It’s whatever jaffa cake says it’s not. It’s a fruit
HN: Jaffa CAKE. I’m not English, I’m not going to debate.
IM: It’s a cake. It’s got an orange inside.
IM: I’ve volunteered with the SRC as a tour guide. I adapt well and make quick friends. It teaches you a lot about communication.
HN: I am a class rep and board member of the gymnastics club and creating weekly meetings for committees are important. Meetings should be kept short with not a lot of chit chat.
MG: worked with the SRC- the talk a lot with the university. Good relations between the uni and the SRC, and this would be a good thing to mimic. With regards to encouraging activism, this would be much more effective if we had good communication with the uni itself.
TB: Can we steal the GUU’s building? We get a nice building and the can have a pub down the road.
Q: If you had to describe the union with one song, what would it be?
MG: Billy Brag
HN: Stronger by Kanye West
IM: We didn’t start the fire by Billy Joel.
TB: Stay with me.
Q: Do you feel represented at the university?
TB: Difficult question to answer. Large populus. I feel reasonably well represented but does that mean the majority of people do?
MG: I feel represented by the SRC but I don’t feel activists are. Activism is an area which needs more representation.
HN: As an Asian, I am a minority in Glasgow. I feel at home and welcomed by everyone here.
IM: I think it’s relative. It’s not that I haven’t been represented, I think with this position I can make sure people are heard. Representation begins with you.
Q: What is your favourite thing about tech team?
TB: I’ve been doing tech since before I was at the uni and is one of the more challenging situations. Diverse range of opportunities.
Q: You make mistakes when doing tech for Friday music quiz, can we accept you being a liability?
TB: It’s a difficult job and I am often underprepared, behind schedule, and running four things at once. The reason I am there is for the live music afterwards, rather than for running the quiz.
Q: You want to create events for charity, can you expand?
IM: Bakesales. Having social events is the best way, maybe have bigger events. Quirky events, we would have to ask people what they want.
Q: Are you planning on letting other campaigns have a space or just your own?
MG: Arms divestment had a film screening at the Boyd Orr which is not suitable where the QMU is the perfect space for those sort of situations. Offer space around conventions.
Q: How would you add on to the QMU’s support of mental health groups such as Elephant in the Room?
IN: Let people know there is a space, more sectioned groups within Elephant itself.
TB: One of the major problems with club nights is that they stay strong and peter out. We need to make
Q: You want to start a new clubnight to showcase another type of music, is that enough?
MG: Activist groups like to have club nights, but they don’t know what the QMU offers. The money they bring in is great for the groups and for the union.
TB: We start strong, but peter out. People are unaware we don’t do things weekly or monthly, we need to keep the advertising up so people know it’s going on. Encourage people to like and share events.
IM: Word of mouth. Have members share the word. Collaborating events with other groups.
Q: The year started with a lot of financial backing but that backing has disappeared. Would you be happy to actively engage with PR?
TB: During freshers’ week we have helpers who allow us to flood campus with PR. That’s Publications Committee’s job. qmunicate is meant to show off best of QMU, their launch parties get numbers so we can use them to PR our events. Can do more for student engagement, eg. livestreams for different events.
MG: PR is important but I think the image problem is the main issue. Even if they hear about the events, they might not want to come. I think our best way to fix it will be to make QMU the union of activism.
HN: I can PR quite well. I have the power to bring people together.
IM: There’s no reason people shouldn’t come to the QMU. Always have an option for people to come to.
19:46 Now it’s time for Current Student Representative B. There are two seats and three candidates – Finlay Carruthers, Jahnvi Kadakia, Ritika Pandey.
JK: First year genetics. I’ll be there for you. Be a voice for the voiceless. Encourage people to try new things. Start a book exchange to help with mental health.
RP: First year neuroscience. Elephant in the Room. Passionate about dance and Bollywood. Focussed on going green and bringing inclusivity and diversity. Collaboration with other societies.
FC: Study English Lit and History of Art. GULGBT Committee. Run open mic night. Help run sustainability events like clothing repair workshops. Make the university a safer place for disabled and trans students.
FC: Hummus. I wanted to make it GULGBTH vegan
RC: Sensation crisps
JK: Thai chilli sensations, smoothies and cookies.
What committee Would you left for?
FC: Events committee, small things we could work out with timetables, for example if there’s a quiet event in Bar it doesn’t make sense to have a loud event in Venue.
RC: Events and Charities. Encourage a bigger crowd.
JK: Charities committee to help with Elephant in the Room.
Q: What would make you a good CSR?
FC: I’m usually the one comforting the crying people in Pop on Wednesday, helpful
RC: Good listener and outgoing person.
JK: Patient listener. Hesitant in first year and would help encourage new students.
Q: Which of the events that you’ve been to at QMU have you enjoyed?
JK: haven’t been to many events but would like to try some.
RC: Also haven’t been to many events.
FC: Quieter social space free from alcohol to allow you to chat.
Q: What appeals to you about the QMU?
RC: Sanskar brought me into this, everyone is so welcoming and I want to take up some responsibilities.
JK: Café is my favourite place
FC: Place on campus I feel the safest
Q: Focus on ‘Aloud’, how would you aim for more involvement?
FC: More advertisement helpful, would be nice to work with qmunicate.
Q: How do you aim to resolve issues surrounding race in the LGBT society?
FC: Facilitate meetings. I can’t come up with solutions that don’t apply to me.
Q: Do you have any ideas to promote Anonymous Pal?
JK: start of Elephant in the Room and share with friends. Social media too.
Q: How to increase inclusivity at the QMU?
RC: President of Indian society. Bring in members from the society.
20:04 Now onto Campaigns & Charities Convenor. There is one seat and one candidate – Robbie Greenshields.
If it ain’t broke don’t fix it. Our camaigns are going really well. Focus more on mental health and environmentalism. Make it a successful committee.
Q: What’s your favourite thing to bake?
RG: I’m Glasknow famous for my chocolate and orange cookies.
Q: You’ve been involved in C&C for two years, you’ve seen varying levels of success. How can we improve?
RG: It’s about the energy, putting your all into it. In the past, we’ve not promoted events as much as we could be, it’s been a little last minute. I will make sure our event planning is organised.
Q: Any ideas for environmentalism?
RG: Helping arrange a screening from World Health Day with a recycling drive. That’s the sort of thing wants to carry forward into the future. Profiles for international women’s day and want same idea to carry forward for environmentalism.
Q: Being a committee member of Elephant, will this bring a new depth to the role?
RG: I want to work more closely with Elephant, and make sure the two committees are integrated and that Elephant members are represented by C&C.
Q: Would you work with the other committees? RG: the board needs to be a lot more collaborative. Especially during freshers’, running charity alongside events such as Propaganda was really successful. No reason why we can’t continue this and excel.
Q: If you had to introduce new events, what would you do?
RG: More environmental events like screenings etc. Recycling drive. Reduce the union’s carbon footprint.
Q [from Sandy the dog]: what plans do you have to ensure a steady supply of dog treats in the building?
RG: I will give you lots of belly rubs because you’re a good boy. I love you. Treats aren’t really my area, but if the café runs out of treats I will not be happy and will stand up for your rights.
Q: Campaigns or Charity?
RG: That’s like asking me to pick a favourite child. Charity. But also campaigns.