Little Change in Student Leadership

31 October 2013

The University of Melbourne Student Union (UMSU) annual election has decided next year’s student reps. Students voted for the positions of office bearers, student council and committee members across five days on Melbourne University campuses.

Stand Up! Candidate Declan McGonigle will carry on Stand Up!’s hold of the Presidential position with a win of 55 % of the votes.

Newly elected President Declan McGonigle said he was excited about his upcoming position. “I’ve been given an amazing opportunity give back to the union that has given so much to me and that I care about so much, and represent 45,000 students at the University.” He also commented on Stand Up!’s dedicated and “passionate” team being responsible for their numerous wins across the election.

Stand Up! Also won the positions of Welfare Officers, Education (Academic) and Secretary. Sophia Liu & Xinyi (Kinsey) won 68% of the votes for Welfare Officers. Adam Galvin & Hana Dalton won the position of Education (Academic) winning 60% of the votes. Samuel Donnelly won 52% of votes for the position of Secretary.

The position of Clubs and Societies officer was won by Tom Walker & Rachel Withers representing More Activities, winning 64% of the votes. More Activities also won the position of Activities Officer with Huan Evans & Keegan Barker winning 76% of the votes.

The polling took place with booths on campus at Union House, The Baillieu Library, the ICT building and Murrup Barak. A total of 3,728 students voted, showing an increase from the total of 3,342 students who voted last year.

Declan McGonigle said students can expect an “active and expansive union” that will offer students a growing number of services and ensure “every student feels a connection with their Union.”

However, with the newly elected Abbott government, McGonigle expressed his concern over the possibility of the Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF) being removed. He said that the SSAF has “contributed so significantly to the growth of the Union allowing us to increase funding to all our departments including Farrago and clubs and societies, as well as expanding University-run services”. He stressed that the Student Union would be active in opposing the potential of the Abbott government to remove SSAF. “We’ll be out there talking to students about why it’s so important and how it affects every student on campus.”

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