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Sabbatical Candidates: Manifestos

Feb 19 2007 13:01
Ashley Brown
Manifestos for the remaining 16 candidates running for sabbatical positions.
They're dropping like flies...

With a week of campaigning left, the field has been reduced from 18 to 16 candidates, with Ben Harris and Ben Schneider withdrawing from the the Presidential race.

Manifestos for the remaining candidates (if they submitted in time) are below. There is also a brief biography available for every candidate.

Remember, if you think you can make a prediction about who will win and who will lose, you can enter the Live! competition. The first hustings is tonight at 19:30 in the Union Dining Hall.

President (5)

Stephen Brown

Stephen Brown

Having spent the last two years reporting on Union affairs for Felix and to a lesser extent representing students on Union Council and various other committees I can tell you that the Union needs a new type of leadership. A lot of students feel that senior officers in the Union have the tendency to be aloof, unapproachable and disconnected with the student body. Elect me as your President and I believe that this would rapidly change. I have the experience to drive such change, but if you have read my columns you will know that I am not your standard ?Union hack?. A full manifesto is available online at but I will provide you with a brief summary below.

Elect me as President and I will:-

  • Negotiate discounts with local businesses so that your Imperial card will start to save you money with no hassle, no forms and no fuss.
  • Only send college-wide emails when I have something important to say, not regular spam that clogs up your inbox.
  • Commit to lobbying for the number of popular course books in our libraries to be increased.
  • Continue working with College to end unfair examination grading practices.
  • Ensure the NUS delivers on their promise of a Science & Engineering network.
  • Work towards better Union catering and more varied ents.
  • Continue with the ?greening? of the Union building.
  • Sell the NUS Extra discount card for £7 instead of £10. Discounts should be free.

Vote Stephen Brown for a better Union!

Diogo Geraldes

Diogo Geraldes

Weeeey! I?m Diogo (dee-oh-goh!), a full-time 21 year old Portuguese macho and a more occasional Biomedical Engineer wannabe.

You're probably now wondering why would someone like me, whose only Union experience is having tried all the types of lager sold in Da Vinci?s, run for President.

Well? I think that anyone can learn the bureaucratic crap that you need to run it, but student life, my fellow friends, that can?t be studied in the library! You have to experience it in order to completely understand what being a student is and how to solve our problems and that I think I master.

The following are some of the things I?m aiming to change in our college:

  • bring fun and coolness to the Union bars by organising more common events with the medics, Wye and the Royal Colleges of Art and of Music.
  • get an outside bar in Beit Quad for Summer Term chilling and revamp Db?s properly.
  • provide hot snacks to the Holland Club for all those PhD binge drinkers.
  • try to get reading weeks and create the Teacher of the Year award in all the departments, improving results and lecturing quality.
  • give more funds to departmental societies and organise career days within each course in order to help with professional decisions.
  • start workshops and collaborations with the neighbouring colleges of Art and Music for all the repressed creative Imperial students.

More information in my Facebook group or when you see me half sober.


Julian Giannuzzi

Julian Giannuzzi

I believe that a good Union president is the person who best represents the Imperial College students. The president is the elected spokesperson for the students of Imperial and responsible for conveying the view of Imperial students to the rest of the country. I believe that I am that person.

As a first year I will be bringing fresh blood and new ideas to ICU. I will still have to complete my course after being president, so I care about how the Union will be run. Final year students may have union experience, but may not care as much for the future of ICU as a younger candidate as they are no longer a student, will they best represent views of students?

I am not going to tell what you want to hear, or say I will do things that I know I won?t or can?t to be president, instead I will express things that I think need changing:

Stella Artois on tap in the union! Why isn't the country?s most popular beer in the union?

Open a union run book shop! Are we becoming illiterate? With Waterstone's gone where will students buy their books? (yes some people actually BUY books)

Have more recycling facilities on campus! I am no eco-warrior but do feel we throw away too many things that could be reused.

I support all ideas expressed by fellow members of the 'Slate' (Messrs. Balikhin, Holland, Narayanan and myself).

"Youthful enthusiasm and new ideas vs. experienced old hacks"



Jon Matthews

Jon Matthews

The Union has taken great steps forward this year albeit not without controversy. We have joined the NUS, we have reformed our governance structure, we have entered into a Sports Partnership with the College, we undertook some painful but necessary reforms to our commercial services. We can make great things from these changes but need a President that is fully aware of the issues and has been involved in them throughout.

Vote Jon Matthews for President and I will:

  • Ensure that we get the service we deserve from the NUS especially the promised Science and Engineering Network.
  • Negotiate properly with College to ensure better co-operation without sacrificing independence.
  • Work for a model of postgraduate representation that works and serves all postgraduates.
  • Ensure an energy efficient and sustainable redevelopment that continues to meet student wishes and requirements.
  • Make all Union officers truly accountable and remove the hurdles that still exist in calling officers to account.
  • Ensure the gym remains truly free, not charged for by the back door.
  • Be available to students whenever needed (I already work 100 hour weeks).
  • Continue the work to reduce bar prices, we have had three cuts this year but can have more.
  • Improve Union catering, let?s face it, it needs it.
  • Bring experience and proven leadership ability to the Union.

You cannot select a President on 250 words, for more information, email me at or watch out for me at hustings and around campus.


Sophie Spillard

Sophie Spillard

As President I will represent students to the best of my ability; I will take student issues to council and be the voice of the student body. Since I am in my second year I feel I have the benefit of being both accustomed to the ways of the university long enough to take on the responsibility of this post as well as having an insight of the demands of all students.

The clubs and societies at College are very important to the students and I would like to maintain the funding that they receive.

It is clear that Imperial is London's leading university academically, however in terms of the social scene and night life our union is far behind the competition; far too many students spend evenings at Kings or LSE. I believe the union has the potential to be an amazing venue and with the incorporation of Beit Redevelopment I would like to attract more students as other London Unions are able to do by hosting larger club nights which would be affordable and desirable. I would also like to heighten the profile of the ICU Cinema; as one of the cheapest cinemas in the West End I feel it is a shame it is under used.

I would like to improve catering within the College; I am keen to keep the privately run RSM café, where food is cheaper and tastier than in equivalent College owned outlets such as in Da Vinci's.

As President, representing student's needs [cut to word limit, 20 words removed]


Deputy President (Finance & Services) (4)

Anthony Calder

Anthony Calder

Make your vote do something!

Firstly, I would like to thank all those students who have seconded me to make it possible to run in this forthcoming election for the role of DPFS, those of you know who you are and thanks, it means a lot!

ICU is going through exciting changes with refurbishments and the implementation of its 5 year strategy plan, the governance review and its affiliation to NUS.

Why should YOU vote Calder;

  • As I will full fill the duties laid out in the constitution regarding the DPFS role to the best of my ability.
  • Make sure campus clubs do not feel isolated from ICU if they are not based in South Kensington by keeping in contact and helping where necessary.
  • Supporting the President in implementing the current Union Strategy.
  • Ensure that ICU Clubs and Societies spend their money wisely.
  • Make sure the changes made this year to ICU such as the governance review are successfully fulfilled.
  • Help ensure we run successful and entertaining events within the Union.
  • As I already have a fairly good understanding on how the finances of ICU work, I will explore ways on improving the system.
  • Work on trying to satisfy the student?s needs regarding the services ICU offer.


  • Depending on what my powers permit me to do so; research and explore the possibility of developing an ICU brand amongst clubs and societies in line with other large universities such as Bath.

Andrew Holland

Andrew Holland

Nobody can deny that our Union bars need improving. If I were elected I would seek to improve this by ensuring that all bar staff are trained to a high standard. All too often we receive service which is poor and slow, sometimes even to the point of downright rudeness. I have worked and have been involved in training in bars before, and know exactly how to turn them around. After that, I would seek to introduce a wider range of drinks, including cocktails, and more beers (Stella!!!) on tap. Also, I would try and get later drinking licenses for end of term events.

With the smoking ban coming in, we are set to lose the shisha bar. I would strive to keep this by introducing patio heaters and a marquee to allow shisha to be comfortably smoked in all weather. The sorry state of food in the union will be addressed as well, with prices better reflecting what you are paying for.

Waterstones has shut down. We are one of the few universities in the UK without a bookshop. A union run bookshop should be on campus ? it is a necessity for students.

Although I may be inexperienced, I believe I, as well as the rest of "the Slate", am what the Union needs. Fresh ideas, and a new outlook on things, rather than tired old career politician students. Vote for me, and "the Slate", if you feel that our Union needs change.


Christopher Larvin

Christopher Larvin

With three years of involvement in the Union ranging from working part-time in the Student Activities Centre, sitting on numerous committees, to being RSM CSC Treasurer, I?ve become familiar with the role of the DPFS. A small selection of problems I have identified over the last few months include -

  1. Clubs and societies are a credit to the Union but are supported with outdated and inadequate systems.
  2. Event planning can be daunting and is rarely done properly.
  3. Despite substantial changes in the Union?s bars there is inconsistent pricing and do not cater for all students.
  4. Catering is the subject of discontent for many, and cannot compete with other facilities on campus.
  5. The finance system is not transparent and is relatively poorly understood by officers.

If elected, I promise to?

  1. Review the Union?s money control mechanism with the aim of reducing bureaucracy and delays when processing claims.
  2. Produce a comprehensive finance training program, including planning for very large events.
  3. Where possible reduce bar prices (including non-alcoholic drinks), and make positive steps with Union staff to find cheaper suppliers.
  4. Work to increase the quality of the Union food and would encourage initiatives to bring students into the Union at lunchtimes.
  5. Encourage changes in the finance structure to allow for greater transparency and accountability.

I believe I am the most experienced candidate standing and have the knowledge, enthusiasm and working relationships to make a positive impact on our Union. Vote Chris for DPFS.


Hugh Mansfield

Hugh Mansfield

As Imperial becomes affiliated with the NUS once more, the role of the DPFS is more significant than ever. With the NUS affiliation fees coming out of the Union budget, the importance of a responsible and effective figure as DPFS cannot be overstated; I will make sure that not only would the remaining budget be managed more effectively, but also that Imperial students are able to take the greatest advantage of the services provided by the NUS.

I recognise that students have to stretch their own budget out, so I will ensure that the best possible facilities are available without pricing them out of reach of the vast majority of students; With this in mind, I will keep hall rents in check so they remain affordable to everyone. I fimly believe that facilities such as the gym must stay free to all Imperial students, and guarantee that this will remain the case.

I will make certain bar prices stay down - since the loss of Southside bar, there is no competition to keep prices low, and I will not allow students to suffer as a result. I will also broaden the range of Union events, while keeping their prices down.

There is a growing feeling that the Union fails to represent all students fully; Not only will I be directly accountable to you, but I will also make myself available at all times for anyone to bring any concerns to me.

For a responsible and accountable DPFS, vote for Hugh.


Deputy President (Clubs & Societies) (2)

Alexander Balikhin

Alexander Balikhin

As the Slate's DPCS candidate I will support the policies of the other Slate candidates. These include an office hour for sabbs to make them more accessible and the renaming of the posts of president and deputy president to Don and Capo, along with renaming the council and executive committee to the Commission and the Sit Down.

I will try to continue the war on bureaucracy, as I'm sure every candidate will promise. This can be done by allowing more forms to be handed in electronically. I will also try and increase the autonomy of clubs and societies, for example allowing clubs to decide for themselves how their AGM is run, instead of the usual way written in the constitution template, or by reducing the newly elected officers form, by not including details about the non-essential officers. Money can also be saved by getting clubs to share. It sounds so easy but if for example there are 2 scuba societies why does each one have to get expensive equipment or why do we have 2 golf societies each paying for ground hire.

Our membership of the NUS should be exploited: NUS campaigns like the ?Strong and Active Unions? can provide assistance to societies.

Finally I will help campus?s other then South Kensington, get a fair deal with regards to C&S.

It?s true that my union experience as re-app and club officer doesn?t compare with that of my opponent but with me you are promised some fresh ideas.


Alistair Cott

Alistair Cott

Why should you vote me for DPCS? Well I have seen first hand the problems which clubs and societies face everyday; this experience comes from being a club officer, in a club and society executive committee, and working in the student activities centre. From this I would like to un-complicate the union, so make the everyday running of all clubs and societies less frustrating.

The union has to remember it is here to help clubs and societies not to hinder them. This means not freezing budgets without at least telling the committee, as I have seen it do, or setting deadlines which the clubs and societies only find out about with very little time to spare.

Many of the countless forms which plague clubs and societies could be implemented online with email confirmation and updated versions from last year. Also much of the finance system could be automated online. This would be a huge improvement leading to less paperwork, and the staff having more time to actually talk to the very people they are there to help.

I believe the process in which clubs and societies go through to get anything online needs to be made easier. Plus the time taken to get anything put online needs to be decreased, if only to persuade clubs and societies it?s a good idea in the first place!

Remember a vote for me would be for an approachable friendly person that clubs and societies could come to sort out any of their problems.


Deputy President (Education & Welfare) (2)

Aditya Narayanan

Aditya Narayanan

A good DPEW realises that universities cannot be run completely like businesses. Although making money is highly important, the priority for Imperial College should be education. I feel a union bookshop on campus is essential. With Waterstones closing down there is currently nowhere for students to purchase books specifically related to their course. Have you noticed how there are coffee shops opening up at every corner of Imperial? Are we really the type of establishment that wants to be trading books for a double espresso?

I know that communication with students is vital, and so all members of the 'Slate' (Messrs. Giannuzzi, Holland, Balikhin and myself) intend to hold office hours where time is reserved specifically to talk to students about anything. One of the problems I have found has been the lack of student involvement in the running of the union, which I will strive to rectify. I would like to encourage all students to feel compelled to raise any issues they have with me.

Being a student ? and that too, a student in London ? weighs heavily on the bank balance. I am deeply concerned about the inflation of accommodation prices, and I want to ensure that they reflect the standards of the rooms available with particular attention being paid to Southside.

Finally, I stand for all policies stated by other members of the 'Slate'. Vote Narayanan for DPEW!


Kirsty Patterson

Kirsty Patterson

Imperial students often lack a Union identity. I intend to run campaigns, driven by students at a faculty level, to increase interest in Union politics and facilitate better development of ideas. Entering the NUS is a key issue for the Union this year and supporting the development of a Science and Technology Network will ensure that we do not waste the opportunity we have been given. Additionally I will ensure that I am available before office hours at 9:00am so that students know they can find me in my office rather than in a meeting.

Guaranteeing a place in halls for first years is vital to retain our appeal to students who would not otherwise consider coming to London. I hope to initiate an online forum for accommodation issues as part of the Union website with the view to simplifying the housing process.

The Union needs to provide healthier eating alternatives in Union catering and wider access to contraception in halls. In order to promote Imperial's status as a socially responsible modern institution I will support College?s commitment to become a Fairtrade University. A simple step that needs to be taken is increasing recycling facilities within College and the Union alike. A natural development is to reduce unnecessary waste and use resources more effectively.

This is a brief summary of some of the ideas and issues I have raised in my full manifesto. You can obtain a copy by emailing or by viewing my discussion board on Facebook.


Felix Editor (3)

Thomas Roberts

Thomas Roberts

Felix has changed dramatically over the last few years. Under Rupert, the news teetered on the tightrope of sensationalism, whereas this year?s Felix has maintained a balanced stance and more professional approach. However, this has been at the expense of some of the light hearted content. If elected, I will bring the best of both worlds.

The comments section will continue with its debate on topical issues like gay adoption and veils, but I will bring back Neighbours discussion, Stormy Woods and other easygoing material. An emphasis will be placed on regularly returning columnists too.

Page 3 has lost the essence of what made it so much fun as well. I intend to guarantee that women and men have an even representation whilst ensuring the photos are more tongue-in-cheek and taken at familiar college locations.

I will introduce a global news page briefly summarising the world?s key events as well as a photography page. There will also be a greater presence at the Freshers? Fair to recruit more staff and beef out the current sections, some of which have only appeared sporadically this year. I will maintain the Felix website and create an informal feedback system so that we can listen to your views.

Felix has played a major role in my life at university and I?ve loved writing for it. Technically I?ve gained a vast amount of experience this year as deputy editor. I promise to push myself hard if you elect me and expand upon the good work of the previous editors.


Emily Lines

Emily Lines

I've been writing for Felix since my first year and have been Arts Editor since 2005, nurturing the Arts page into a regular section. I've developed lots of PR contacts and my writers get access to London's most important Arts events.

I'm a 4th year mathematician but I've spent most of my time at Imperial doing lots of other things! I sat on the summer ball committee, worked in the Union bar, played netball and as well as my first love Felix, I am currently a Pimlico Volunteer and RCSU Honorary Secretary.

I will bring Felix out on Thursdays again! Being distributed on Friday lunchtime as it is now means that many students don't get a copy until Monday, when the news may well be out of date.

I want more features and interviews in Felix, and a bigger science section. I plan a 'News in Brief' section with news about student activity in other inferior universities.

I want Felix to hold Sabbs accountable for their decisions and promises, and report on what changes to the Union mean for students.

But it's not just about news. To keep you entertained in boring lectures, I plan to resurrect the legendary FUCWIT league, print more puzzles, games and have funnier comment. I will be bringing in new ideas and contributors to keep Felix dynamic and evolving. As for our beloved centrefold; boys, girls, animals, statues - I?m not fussed.

Ambitious plans.

Experience coming out of my ears.

Vote Emily for Felix.


Felix Sinclair

Felix Sinclair

I'm a third year physicist and a re-app at Southwell Hall. I'm 5'10" with dark hair and a slim figure, looking for a funny, dark-haired girl, preferably with a good dress-sense, for fun, maybe more.

Felix is bland this year. If you want the same again next year, vote for one of the other people (reverse psychology, don't actually do that). I want Felix to be fun and less uptight, it is a student newspaper at the end of the day.

My Felix will be a lot more like it was last year under the legendary Rupert Neate, i.e. nail-biting excitement and drama from start to finish 10/10. It will cater for a less narrow range of readers.

Here are my proposals for next year?s Felix:

  1. Investigative journalism. Apparently nothing happens at Imperial. Fair enough, but those of you who were here last year probably remember the Felix editor trespassing in all the halls to expose hall security. Felix can make news. My Felix is going to get involved, find out what matters to students and investigate.
  2. More writers. Felix needs upscaling. I?ll attract a greater range of writers to keep more people interested.
  3. Pay rise for Felix editor.
  4. The Oxford English dictionary defines naked as ?without clothes?. Why are my centrefold models not naked??
  5. Coffee break with Lou and Andy

In a nutshell, if you elect me as Felix editor I?ll make it a lot more entertaining and light-hearted.

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Discussion about “Sabbatical Candidates: Manifestos”

The comments below are unmoderated submissions by Live! readers. The Editor accepts no liability for their content, nor for any offence caused by them. Any complaints should be directed to the Editor.
Feb 19 2007 13:11

The slate!

These kids are priceless. I can't wait to see them get torn to shreds at hustings.

Feb 19 2007 14:02

This is Amazing! Quote from Ms Spillard

"I would like to improve catering within the College; I am keen to keep the privately run RSM café, where food is cheaper and tastier than in equivalent College owned outlets such as in Da Vinci's."

College owned outlets such as in DaVincis. This, for president

Feb 19 2007 14:04

Since when is kensington the West End?

Feb 19 2007 14:57

To slate sceptic -

See you there :-P

Feb 19 2007 15:11

poor sophie, she riddle her manifesto with errors. quite a promising candidate until she decided to place imperial a few miles off the map and gave some of our profits to college...

ignorance is bliss, she should give up now before she ridicules herself

Feb 19 2007 17:11

Waterstones shut down? That's a bit of an embarassment. The Union shop on the walkway used to be the campus bookstore until the college decided to put it out to tender, with Waterstones ultimately being awarded the contract at the Union's expense.

Maybe this has been discussed elsewhere and I've just missed it....

Feb 19 2007 17:18

sophie's hot which is more can be said for the other candidates!

Feb 19 2007 21:13

Erm, what difference does it make whether she's hot?

Seriously, what would she do for the union? Make it compulsory for all the sabbs to have chiuauas in bags? She doesn't have a clue, I bet she thinks quorum is something you get in Linda McCartney ready meals...

Feb 19 2007 21:21

Oh I'm not so sure - Mr Cott's facial hair gets me going.....

10. Ant   
Feb 19 2007 23:14

If you ask Cineworld then Kensington is within the West End. After all Fulham Road and Chelsea are on its list of premium rate cinemas.

As a random observation on cinemas I did notice that Hammersmith Cineworld does have a sign saying NUS Discount only, they never did that at Fulham Road i noticed...

Feb 19 2007 23:22

on a lighter note


i'm curious as to what people who read LIVE! discussions think will happen

Feb 20 2007 07:38

President - Steve Brown

DPFS - Chris Larkin

DPEW - Kirsty

DPCS - Alastair

Felix - Emily Lines

Any other offers?

Feb 20 2007 08:03

President - Jon/Steve (tough call)

DPFS - Chris Larvin

DPEW - Kirsty

DPCS - Alistair

Felix - Emily Lines

Feb 20 2007 08:19

Mmmmmm.... pancakes!

Feb 20 2007 12:14

My thoughts:

1. While we're arguing about who owns what, the Holland Club isn't union-owned, and shouldn't really even be open to PGs. Plus the guy running it isn't really very friendly. So good luck to Diogo in his quest for hot snacks.

2. Stella is frankly p***.

3. Stephen Brown would be my first choice for President, but to be honest I'm a little worried by the fact that he was part of the team that managed to lose the NUS referendum - something I thought would be impossible even given some of the dodgy goings-on... As long as he doesn't rename the union MUDFLAP or something we'll probably be OK though.

16. sophie   
Feb 20 2007 15:08

clearly its sophie for pres! put up a pic that shows how hot you are and you'll win hands down. it is time we had someone attractive and fun as a union sabb

Feb 20 2007 15:50

Sophie - get yourself a full frontal page 3 in Felix and I guarantee you'll win the election hands down. I think you would be brilliant as the Pres. It's about time we get some real people into the Union. Any students with half a mind should vote for a president with half a mind.

18. jess   
Feb 20 2007 16:50

... don't the holland club already serve hot snacks? i was sure they sold pies and paninis...

and no, phd students arent allowed in there. only staff.

and kevin is VERY friendly.

Feb 20 2007 16:58

Hmmm, PhD students aren't allowed in the Holland Club? That will come as a disappointment to the people from my group who have been drinking in there for years...

Feb 20 2007 17:56

They also allow undergraduates if they are from a group that has previously sought permission eg. orchestras and darts players...

Feb 20 2007 18:42

In fact I'm pretty sure that only support staff (i.e. not academic staff) are allowed in there. Luckily this rule is normally (but not always) carefully ignored.

Jess you are showing your age - The Holland Club stopped serving hot food about a year ago. If you ignore the hot nuts that is...

Feb 20 2007 23:49

Mr Brown is an independent minded individual. But I reckon that renaming the Union "MUDFLAP" is probably not on his list of priorities/wishes.

Feb 21 2007 01:35

Mr Diogo looks like the most abissmal choice for Pres. Mr Brown would just be a miserable bast*rd who would bring a reign of terror across the whole of Gimperial. Dr Spillard would change things for the better, definately. Mr Gonzalles, well when did we all turn 50 years old, for goodness sake. Lets get real.

Feb 21 2007 16:00

I think word of mouth missed out one candidate... Would you care to express an opinion on Mr Matthews?

25. jess   
Feb 21 2007 17:43

yes, i'm "well old"

and ashley, shh, you arent actually allowed in. i think kevin just puts up with you

26. order?   
Feb 24 2007 15:57

whats with the ordering? def not alphabetic...

27. ;)   
Feb 24 2007 17:04

Brown, Geraldes, Giannuzzi, Matthews, Spillard.

Which alphabet are you referring to?

Feb 24 2007 18:31

Roberts, Lines, Sinclair?

Feb 24 2007 18:50

I believe those were sorted using the "c**k-up" alphabet. It was quite widely used by Felix last year (all those interesting spellings were not mistakes, just re-interpretations of the alphabet).

Feb 25 2007 22:54

So which elections are shaping up to be proper contests? Last year was boring.

Feb 26 2007 10:33


Feb 26 2007 11:55

If the "normal" students in the running mobilise their supporters, I think some of these elections could turn out to be very interesting indeed.

If they get apathetic and turnout doesn't increase, then its probably a foregone conclusion...

Feb 26 2007 11:55

And the bug which was stopping some posts going on to Live! is now fixed...

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