Meet the candidates running for Union Affairs Officer in the SU elections

Voting closes on Thursday


With this year's SU election fully in swing, it's time to meet the candidates who could be running Bristol SU next year.

Take a look at their answers to get more information on who to vote for. But, be quick — voting is only open from 12-14 of March!

Nachan Fujiwara, third year, Law

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What makes you the best candidate for this role?

"I’m currently heavily involved in my society BULABDS, the ballroom at latin dancing society, and I’ve been on the committee for two years now. This year I’ve been the Union Liaisons Officer so looking through the job description of the Union Affairs Officer it is effectively what I’m currently doing, on a bigger scale for the whole society body as well as the further student body.

"I’ve thoroughly enjoyed this job, and I’ve been told by our current committee and people who’ve been on the previous committees that I’ve done this job the best that anybody has so far, which is encouraging. I have a lot of ideas through being on the committee that the SU could definitely improve on, and I think that if I get elected I can definitely get these sorted out."

What is the most impressive part of your manifesto?

"Impressive is a very interesting word to use. I have very specific ideas because I have been so involved in the running of a society. I have very society-specific, but very tangible, goals that I want to achieve. For example, increasing access to societies by students. I have found, through running a society this year that the hardship fund for students, which students can apply to, has a deadline which comes quite close to freshers’ fair, rather than being say after the first week or two when students will more realistically be joining societies."

"Or say, from a committee point of view our current dashboard that we use online is quite hard to manoeuvre. Currently we don’t get training on how to use it properly. It’s kind of a matter of somebody on the committee has to figure it out, and then they have to show everyone. So, I’m making sure that when committees start their jobs at the beginning of the year the SU provides full training on all their tools and programmes that they use, so that it’s not relying on someone that’s within the society to figure it out."

What’s the biggest change you want to bring to UoB students?

"I think there are a lot of students, and mental health services can only handle a certain amount. You can’t expect societies to be able to handle very serious cases, but if you delegate that looking after and keeping an eye on people, making sure that everyone is okay.

"Having those societies being able to actively look after their members is really important in making sure that committees have the right equipment and tools, look out for things or if they spot something that might be a bit iffy, making sure there’s a channel to communicate that in a confidential way.

"Then we can make sure these things get dealt with, rather than festering and getting worse. Along those lines, this all relies on students being part of a society somewhere, if we’re making sure that in one way or another people joining the university find their place to be and making sure that things like financial factors aren’t going to be a variable in that."

Where’s your favourite place to go on a Bristol night out?

"I’m going to have to say Lizard Lounge, because as part of dance society it is our go to place and going out with the dance crew is one of the most surreal experiences. Even when I take my non-dance friends with me to a dance night out, it’s very different because it’s all very comfortable."

Max Langer, second year, Film and TV with Innovation

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What makes you the best candidate for this role?

"First of all it’s the range of stuff that I’ve been doing at uni since I came here. I originally came here to study Maths and ended up transferring so I know exactly how difficult it can be trying to change your course, deferring, or changing your studies. I’ve also been active in sports societies, RAG, volunteering, SU politics and passing motions. I passed the motion that set up the anti-Brexit campaign at the SU, working with Sally Patterson the ELA officer. I think it’s the variety of things that I’ve been achieving in the SU that stands me in good stead for the position."

What is the most impressive part of your manifesto?

"I think the main thing in my manifesto is trying to change the role of the SU when it comes to interacting with students. I really want to reform the Annual Members’ meeting. Anyone who was at the meeting three weeks ago now can attest that it doesn’t engage enough students, it’s never quorate, and so it ends up passing policy that students don’t care about, and ignores the things that students really need dealing with. I want to open up student democracy and try to build a system where students from across the university, even those who haven’t interacted with the students’ union before, are able to actually have their voice heard."

What’s the biggest change you want to bring to UoB students?

"In my manifesto I lay out quite a lot of changes I want to make in terms of sustainability with the Students’ Union, so I want to work towards having a single-use-plastic free campus. At the Annual Members’ Meeting we passed a motion declaring climate emergency, the city has done the same, and all the reports that we see coming out of the UN show that we need to be making action. I think that it’s the role of universities and students’ unions to be leading that charge, and so setting out an aim for having a single-use-plastic free campus within the next few years, while also increasing sustainability in other ways that we can find down the road."

Where’s your favourite place to go on a Bristol night out?

"I’m a big fan of Lounge, I like cheesy tunes. Lounge is the place where you know it’s bad, but you just enjoy it anyway. I’m going there on Saturday for my 21st, I’ve got friends coming down for it."

Julio Mkok, final year, Law

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What makes you the best candidate for this role?

"There’s a serious side and a relaxed side. On the serious side, I’d say experience and commitment. In terms of experience, I have three years experience in education network. I’ve been a law faculty rep this year. So the ability to foster relationships with key people would be a major boost to me in this role. On the relaxed side, I’d like to say I’m charismatic and and approachable. And those are the type of things that help me with negotiation skills. "

What is the most impressive part of your manifesto?

"Definitely improving student experience. I’m a fan of the work done by the current Union Affairs Officer and I want to continue in the direction he’s taken. So for example, free washing in halls for both freshers and returning students. And also I’m looking to establish of UoB app. Everyone has been saying 'why don’t we have an app? Other unis have an app'. So I think that would bring us into the modern age. Another thing is that we have a problem with regards to space. There are too many people and not enough places to put them. So I would open up lecture theatres during exam periods."

What’s the biggest change you want to bring to UoB students?

"Again, student experience: let’s face it. I want to improve involvement of students in university decision making. Students are they major shareholders but they are not put into perspective. Sometimes the are consulted but I want them to be a determining factor in decision making."

Where’s your favourite place to go on a Bristol night out?

"I’m a big sports fan. I like Wednesday sports nights at Bunker, with the football team, the rugby team, cheerleaders, lacrosse. But the creme de la creme has to be Friday nights at SWX. Upstairs on the RnB floor, mmm you can’t beat it. But then there’s midweek at Mbargos too. I’m a party animal man."

Beth Mulley, third year, Music

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What makes you the best candidate for this role?

“I’m very approachable, I care a lot about societies and I work really hard. I am good at delivering on my promises that I have. I’m the President of the Music Society currently and have fulfilled everything I wanted to do with that.

“Also, I’m able to manage a lot of projects at the same time. I’m currently Music President, a lifeguard at the SU, doing an optional research project for Psychology and I work with Student Support Services. I’m pretty capable of managing a lot of things. Also, I have spoken to a lot societies about things that need improving such as RAG, LQBTQ+, Nightline and Vet School. I have mentioned how they need more support in media, not being double booked and being more represented in the SU."

What is the most impressive part of your manifesto?

“I would say reclaiming the SU as a student venue and building. The vets have been double booked and an external venue has got the booking rather than the SU. I want to see at least 20 events happening the Anson Rooms per term. I want a room booking app to make sure it’s easy for societies to get rooms in the SU. I want other venues and buildings attached in the app so that SU is expanding outwards.”

What’s the biggest change you want to bring to UoB students?

“Making the campus more accessible, so trying to ensure that the refurbishments on the campus centre are accessible and geared towards students needs. I want lockers, showers, a food court. I also want to make the Uni more accessible by expanding on the bus routes. I want the U1 go to Coombe Dingle and I want the U2 bus route to be accessible at weekends. A lot of the students up there are stuck in Langford for the weekend and can’t get involved with societies.”

Where’s your favourite place to go on a Bristol night out?

“I really like GFS at Mr Wolf’s, a lot of my friends are jazz musicians. I also like Itchy Feet at Thekla”