‘We’re seen as unimportant when we get burgled’: Olivia Narayan is running to be Notts SU president

This role truly reflects the students’ voice


The SU elections are here. Cue candidates thrusting leaflets in your face, inviting you to like their Facebook pages, and sincerely pledging to change the world.

As part of a series on the SU presidential candidates, The Nottingham Tab will be profiling each of the six students gunning for the most important role in the Nottingham Students Union.

For our first profile, we interviewed Olivia Narayan, a third year studying English Literature, who's aiming to change how we live in Lenton and the ways we view student voice on campus.

This is what she had to say to us:

What do you hope to do in your year as president?

"I want to make Lenton a safer place, somewhere people feel is their home and that they can actually relax and rest in, instead of being on edge! I want to increase welfare accessibility and signposting, ensuring students feel the help they need in available.

Also, I want to reward students on committees for their hard work in a significant and meaningful way. I also want to have two ports of call, one in Christmas semester and one in spring where students can voice their thoughts and immediate needs for the officers to take on board"

How will you make Lenton a safer place?

"I will aim to meet with police and explain the situation because it is not fair that we are not taken seriously. If burgled, we are seen as unimportant but we experience the same trauma as the general public and it should be acknowledged and taken seriously."

Do you think people bother voting in the elections? Is this a problem?

"People who are invested in the SU tend to vote, but only 9000 out of 33,000 voted last year. It’s important students take their opportunity to vote and shape the SU for the better.

Students say it doesn’t matter if they’re graduating but it does for the incoming cohort! People should take the time even if they’re busy just because one person can shake the entire student experience."

What are your hopes for your role as president?

"The role of an officer is to be a voice for the students and accordingly; I would hope to implement several points within the year where students can put forward their views and opinions of what could be improved or changed within the union. This can then go forward to the officers for them to work upon. This role would therefore truly reflect the students’ voice."

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Olivia's manifesto:

1. Make Lenton a safer community for all.

2. Increase awareness of the welfare services and increase funding towards them.

3. Recognise the hard work of students on committees and JCRS, through a reward scheme.

4. Increase SU officer visibility and provide opportunities for the officers to adapt their manifestos to fit the students opinions throughout the year.