With conference delegates now elected - and the main Anti-NUS campaigner achieving 100 more votes than the nearest competitor - ICU is gearing up for its first NUS conference at the end of the month. One of the duties there will be to elect new members of the national executive committee, including the positions of President, VP Education, VP Welfare, National Treasurer and National Secretary.
Imperial seems to have had an impact on this year's holders of some of those positions, with John Collins giving his support to the incumbents for their re-election. Gemma Tumelty, Wes Streeting and Stephen Brown (the NUS one, not our raving Scot) all mention the ICU President in their list of supporters.
Proving Imperial's membership is a political bonus, Stephen Brown uses it several times: not only is "John Collins Pres Imperial" mentioned as a supporter, but he uses a photo of himself with a penguin by 'Yes to NUS' signs. The list of things he has "promised and delivered" this year also includes "Imperial College in Membership".
When challenged about his support for the incumbent holders of these positions, Mr Collins indicated that they were the people pushing for reform so ICU should lend its support. Looking at the manifestos he is probably right, but why are two year sabbaticals bad for ICU but good for the NUS?
We have carefully removed manifestos for the 'key' positions in the NUS from the 88 page, 52MB manifestos document and presented them below. You will find a selection of "activism", "education not war", "education not for sale", "solidarity" and various sabbatical officers from unions around the country slapping the candidates on the back and saying "well done old chap".
Imperial students do not get to vote directly, but there is still time to have your voice heard. The President may not have consulted with Council or the student body before putting his support behind candidates, but there are eight NUS delegates who have pledged to follow the wishes of Imperial students when voting. Given the choices, many may conclude that Mr Collins is spot on with where he gives his support.
A few abbreviations you may need:
- ENS: Education Not for Sale, describe themselves as "radical anti-capitalist activists", opposed to fees and in favour of grants for all
- SBL: Student Broad Left, standing for "No to Bush's war drive; Fight racism, stop the BNP; For free education; No to NUS Xtra; For international justice and solidarity"
WARNING: The manifestos available for download contain graphic scenes of student activism and extreme left-wing propaganda materials.
- Sofie Buckland (ENS)
- Rob Owen (Respect)
- Gemma Tumelty (Incumbent, Supported by John Collins)
NUS Vice President Education
- Dan Glass (ENS)
- Wes Streeting (Labour, Incumbent, Supported by John Collins)
- George Woods (SBL)
Of particular interest is that Mr Streeting was recently criticised by his former union at Cambridge for attacking their boycott of the National Student Survey. Streeting himself set up the boycott when he was President, but told Cambridge's Varsity that recent changes to the survey have made it more applicable to the university.
NUS Vice President Welfare
- Richard Angell (Labour)
- Daniel Randall (ENS)
- Clare Solomon (Respect)
- Ama Uzowuru
NUS National Treasurer
- Dave Lewis
- Sam Rozati (Students First)
- Hannah Tweddell (SBL)
NUS National Secretary
- Assed Baig (Respect)
- Stephen Brown (Incumbent, Supported by John Collins)