AU Presidential Candidates: Who are ya? Who are ya?
Talking bum tattoos, Top Top and dodgy dance moves, Jack Banister meets the four AU President candidates
Amidst the sea of pamphlets, manifestoes and rain-soaked campaigners engulfing you as you climb Forum Hill, there’s one election you probably should stop and think about: the AU presidential race .
The first of this year’s candidates is well-known EUNC Social Sec, Sports Science-studying Lukie and BNOC of the Year finalist Indigo Hull, who says she’s “just about managed” to come back from her narrow defeat at the hands of TJ Nartey.
This lass takes the utmost pride in her bolt – her finest, she tells me, is “a very ladylike 2.9 second effort.” When quizzed about her Top Top antics, Hull claims she’s “a horrid dancer,” but still loves “putting on a performance for the crowds on the Ledge.”
Asked what single, radical change would occur under her regime, Indi suggested that she would “turn Forum Hill into a ski slope, so we could get a ski lift up, and just cruise down,” which sounds pretty bloody good, really.
Of course, there’s some serious clout to her campaign. She says that “more female varsities is a must,” and has hatched an elaborate plan for a massive multi-sport varsity event, incorporating both the big and small AU clubs.
Our second candidate is another Lukie – yep, a Sports Science student: ten points for Gryffindor – Emily Robinson, a self-professed “sports fanatic.”
This girl is the Women’s Cricket Club Captain, an EULHC Social Sec and a member of the EUWRFC 1st team. She says, “the old degree often has to take a back seat,” mainly because she’s obsessed with beating Loughborough, and with collecting stash.
If elected, she plans to “take small steps to benefit the AU” and to have an “everyday active presence.” Pleasingly, she’s also agreed to help me get rid of the “purple monstrosities” in the Auditorium, and to “replace them with green ones.”
You may also have seen her drunken promise to get AU President 2014/15 tattooed on her bum, along with the Uni crest, if she’s elected, a claim she admits she “may live to regret.”
She has confirmed, however, that the tattoo will be happening if she wins, because she’s “willing to go all out, and has always wanted one anyway.”
Our final female candidate, Ali Borland, is studying Sports Science, Biology and Mandarin, but maintains she’s a Lukie at heart.
Another candidate “bugged” by the lack of female Varsities on campus, this girl is Volleyball’s Club Captain, and has also been heavily involved in all levels on netball in her time here.
Due to what she describes as her “incredible jump height,” Ali does have to be careful on Top Top, for fear of smashing her head on the ceiling.
Pleasingly, she’s also dead against p*rple, and has vowed to “ban all students from wearing it on campus.” She also forced me to put the asterisk in above, so as to not offend anyone.
Ali is particularly concerned with succession, which she says is “an undervalued element in student politics,” and hence, one of the focal points of her manifesto is to ensure she “builds on the ideas of previous AU Presidents and carries them through to fruition.”
Under her presidency, we can also expect more campaigning for a new indoor sports hall, which she believes is essential to give our indoor AU clubs the opportunities they deserve to succeed.
Our final candidate, and the only bloke running, Andy Higham is EUTC’s Club Captain, and was their Publicity Secretary in his second year. Asked why he thinks there’s no other male candidate, he jokes “everyone saw me in the gym, and ran away.”
Sadly, there’s no outrageous plans for ill-placed tattoos in his campaign. Higham was quick to shut down the possibility when I mentioned it: “Why would I ruin my perfect ass?” he asked.
Andy is “really pleased” with the state of our intramural sport, although he plans to get more weekend tournaments off the ground, which, to my delight, he says will “kick off with an ultimate frisbee extravaganza.”
If their was a buzzword for Andy’s manifesto, it would definitely be publicity. His inspiration comes from his brother’s experience of US College Sport, where 1000 people will turn out to watch a home tennis match.
This crowd size, Andy tells me, has “a lot to do with how they cover sport.” He hopes to create a comprehensive website of team biographies, match reports and videos.
He “firmly believes people at Exeter would come and watch more sport if they knew how good our teams were.”