Welcome to SURG's 2017 politics blog: Shortwave. Today, the USU Election looms over us.
It seems like USU Board candidates are finally beginning to pay attention to what (and who) has gone before them. Last year, independent candidate Koko Kong, who ran on the single-policy platform of better representation of international students, received 1451 primary votes, the most ever cast for a USU candidate.
The USU has released the list of candidates for board directors, each whom provided a brief outline of their prospective policies.
This year, the field of ten candidates has done their homework. Seven of them are running as independents, with 6 sharing the policy of "better employment (or job training) for international students", and 5 sharing the pledge for a "international student mentoring program run by domestic student / USU alumni volunteers".
One can hope that these policies reflect the candidates' legitimate concerns that the USU needs to provide more services for international students, and are not just cheap lip service based off Koko's success.
The full list of the shared policies (more than 3 candidates) can be seen here:
Access for International Students to CareerHub / USU employment / local employment (6 candidates)
Mentoring for International Students run by domestic student volunteers. (5 candidates)
Better food/ better venues/more USU spaces/hire them out more (5 candidates)
international festival / language week / revue (4 candidates)
In-app signup to clubs and societies / better C&S marketing etc (4 candidates)
Reform loyalty programs and track progress with the USU app (3 candidates)
Quarterly (or similar) Director reports published in PULP (3 candidates)
Free Access Card Program for students from low-SES backgrounds (3 candidates)
A review of C&S funding to reduce overfunding. (3 candidates)