Andy Heeps (for it is he), former President of Imperial College Union, has been made an Honorary Member of City & Guilds College Union. The award is the highest in the Union and this is the first time it has been awarded for a generation (of students).
Mr Heeps, now coming to the end of his long tenure as a student of the Medical School, first got involved in Guilds in 1998 when he was ICU President and decided to sack the entire Executive. He subsequently and took over the running of C&GCU himself. Speaking at Live!?s recent 3rd birthday dinner, the veteran columnist described Guilds as ?not being a proper union? at that time.
The circumstances surrounding Andy Heeps? unprecedented ?takeover? of C&GCU are too long to delve into but involved serious problems with morale and a scandal involving embezzlement of Union funds.
Shortly after Mr Heeps? intervention Guilds began the process of rebuilding under the successive leadership of Hamish Common, Ruben Connolly and Dinesh Ganesarajah. Whilst the characteristically sharp criticism (where due) from the (in)famous Tory was a proverbial thorn in the backsides of the aforementioned past C&G Presidents, his support had a constructive effect.
Speaking of the award, Dan Lehmann, Guilds Honorary Secretary said ?it?s a measure of the man?s great dedication to all students at Imperial College ? engineering or medic.?
The conferment of Honorary Membership is the highest award in C&G Union and has not been made for several years. Under existing policy it is only conferred upon individuals who are not C&G students. No-one is entirely sure when the last award was made since one of the sins of the C&G administration booted out by Mr Heeps was to bin almost the entirety of the Union?s archives.