3627 students voted last week for those they felt would best represent their needs as part of the new Union executive at Queen's. Both election days saw the Union buzzing with activity, something which has been sorely lacking in previous years, as circus performers drummed up attention and candidates and their helpers campaigned with loudspeakers and flyers aplenty.
The new online voting system was undoubtedly a contributing factor to the higher number of voters, as well as the more active campaigns of the candidates. This year, in contrast to others, manifestoes were made accessible and clearer to the average student, and colourful posters advertising the elections were seen around the Union weeks in advance.
There was the usual bickering among candidates of course, as is usually the case in Northern Ireland; Some claimed that aims targeting law students were simply false promises, bebo was used as a base on which to publicise views about certain potential executive members and one personal statement was even alleged to be disadvantageous to the others due to its 70 extra words...
By Friday afternoon however, threats of electoral courts had been dropped, sore losers had dried their eyes and the names of those to take up residence in the spacious offices of the second floor of the Union next year had been announced. (see below)
Despite certain hitches which were to be expected in a new system of voting, this year saw a positive move towards the way Union voting should be at Queen's - more students taking part, clear campaigns and (for the most part) genuine candidates with no hidden agendas. All that remains is for the new executive to go about fulfilling their promises in the year ahead...let's hope they make more of an impact than the present one has.
President - John Roger
Deputy President - Sarah McCaffrey
VP Education - Michál Harkin
VP Welfare - Ciarnan Helferty
VP Clubs and Services - Steffan Rafferty