Candidate interview: Ste Smith

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“I have the necessary skills for the job”

Ste Smith – Fylde College

Ste Smith feels that he has “a passion for LUSU” and would aim to “improve the student experience for everybody” if he were to be President.

To date, Smith has had plenty of involvement with LUSU. He has been on Fylde JCR for two years, is currently Cross Campus Officer for LUSU campaigns, and is employed by LUSU retail. He believes that his previous role as Fylde President will be extremely beneficial to him. It involved “taking a widespread view of all the different aspects, whether it’s socials, welfare, Freshers’ Week or Extrav” he explained, and in order to lead LUSU, Smith thinks it is fundamental to “have an interest” in all aspects. He also feels that this role has given him the necessary leadership skills for the job.

Smith has a variety of different plans should he be elected, including altering the governance structure in an effort to make LUSU more accessible. At the moment, he feels that the structures are not clear enough, reflected in the frustration felt at the latest General Meeting where people were not fully aware of the amendments procedures or the voting regulations. He would aim for an “open source democracy” where “random selections of students” can be consulted in order to formulate new ideas.

Smith would also like to have a big act during Freshers’ Week and labelled the fact that this has never been done as “criminal.” Smith is also keen to work closer with the JCRs in their organisation of Freshers’ Week, ensuring that the channels of communication are kept open.

This idea goes hand-in-hand with the rising expectation of incoming students as a result of £9,000 fees. “The union needs to be a watchdog” he commented, and that they must constantly be on the case of the university “to make sure they are living up to the promises and pledges they have made to their students.”

“We need to make sure the money that is being spent on students” he continued, “is being spent in the right way and that students are benefiting from it.”

Smith would also like to see the Sugarhouse and LUSU retail services developing and “providing for what students want, not what they think students want.”

On the subject of the possibility of a Lancaster-Liverpool collaboration, Smith believes that at the moment there is still not enough information available. He thinks there are clear benefits and drawbacks to this possibility, and does not want to see “Lancaster being a partner that is abused in a way that Liverpool gets the benefits” and would tread with caution in regards to this.

“If I become President” Smith concluded, “I hope that when I leave I will be leaving behind a much clearer, defined structure for people to get involved in the Students’ Union.”

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