Welcome to all of our new and returning international students! It’s election week at EUSA. But what are the by-elections all about and why are they important? We asked Vice President for Student Activities, Andy Peel, about how student representation works and how you can get involved.
Edinburgh University Students Association (EUSA) is a democratic membership organisation…so what does that mean? That means all students are able to decide two things:
- Who runs EUSA?
- How EUSA is run?
How can students decide WHO runs EUSA
Students run in the EUSA elections every year to make changes as to how EUSA is run. They upload manifestos to the EUSA website saying what they don’t like and what they will do to change it; for each position there are numerous candidates to choose from. I would encourage all students to vote in the elections – it gives you the chance to shape the future of EUSA by voting for a candidate you think has the best ideas and intentions for all students. Imogen Wilson is your full time Academic Affairs sabbatical officer, which means she’s taken a full year out of her studies to work for and represent students on academic issues. She is campaigning to bring back the post-study work visa , which was ended by the UK Government in 2012. There are always issues that are relevant to international students. Students who are passionate about those issues should definitely vote in elections and perhaps even stand for a position!
How can students decide HOW EUSA is run?
If students decide that they want EUSA to provide more food options in Teviot or that the their lectures aren’t been available online quickly enough, they can submit a policy to EUSA saying so. Policy is submitted to Student Council, a forum where students gather to debate issues which are then voted on. If the policy passes then EUSA is then mandated to enact it. A recent example of policy passed was ‘Say no to arms companies’ – where EUSA was asked to not let any arms companies on campus because of the effects these arms companies have in war-torn countries.
The best way to get involved is to start by coming to Student Council meetings. If you are passionate about the way Edinburgh University and EUSA are run then come along to the meetings and take part in the voting and discussions. If you have ideas that you think would make a difference to students on your course, you can also get involved by being a class rep or standing in the EUSA elections in March to become a School Convenor, Student Group Convenor eg. International Students Convenor or Sabbatical Officer.
Voting is now OPEN for the EUSA By-Elections! You can see all the candidates on the EUSA website and you can vote for anyone you choose up until 12pm Thursday 15th October! So have a look and cast your vote to decide how EUSA is run.
Categories: University Life