The Finance and Services Officer has the fundamental job of proposing a budget for the income and expenditure of the Students’ Union. The officer should then monitor all Union grants and expenditure and draw up quarterly reports of income and expenditure. They should also consider budgets for entertainment events of the SU and should ensure adequate finance training to the relevant officers of Clubs and Societies, Student Run Services, Associated Bodies and JCRs.
After being elected as Treasurer for Broadgate Park with responsibility for a £100,000 budget, Hudson felt that running for FSO was the next natural step. He maintains that it is his profound interest in financial and business issues which differentiates him from his competitors – he has been trading on the stock market (apparently with “great success”) since the age of 18 and has gained a significant amount of work experience in the City.
There is no doubt that Hudson’s most ambitious manifesto pledge is to address the “seriously inefficient” financial management of the Den. Although he admits it would be complicated and controversial, he said that he would consider handing operational control over to an external company. Hudson is adamant that his Fresher status is “not relevant” and reminds us that he is in fact 20 years old. He seems certain that people will judge him on the quality and “wide appeal” of his manifesto rather than on his age. Aside from his clear ambition, Hudson’s strongest attribute is probably his extensive understanding of the current state of the SU’s finances.
Sam Le Pard
Le Pard is undoubtedly highly competent in the domain of finance. He has already acted JCR treasurer, AU Finance Officer and History Society treasurer. During his interview with Impact he made some interesting comments about the current economic climate. It’s reassuring that Le Pard is aware of the challenges that he may be confronted with as FSO- he mentioned financial pressure from the government as an example- but he also said that this is an “exciting time” for the SU as the economic situation will inevitably require working and thinking in new ways.
Le Pard has apparently been working on his policies since Septmeber. One of his most appealing ideas is to use an online ticketing system for all SU events, such as Week One and Varsity. He added that this would also be an environmentally friendly system.
Geller wants to “provide an improved range and variety in services on offer” and wants to make them as cheap as possible and best value for money. This would include looking into the products stocked by the SU shops across the different campuses and looking to source the products that people want for the best possible price. He also suggests Mooch and the Print Shop as areas that should be looked at to ensure that the services are value for money. Improved feedback is another of Geller’s key aims. One of his plans is to create a suggestions board for students in the SU shop, where they can write items that they want to see in the shop. Geller is also aiming to implement a 24 text feedback service if elected, so that students can “quickly and easy feed back to the Exec what they want to see in the Students’ Union”.
Geller is not looking to make widespread, radical changes to how the Union is funded. For him it is important to “maintain appropriate income streams to the Union and as part of a long term strategy look at the current allocations of the Union budget so that the Exec can continue to support clubs, societies and SRSs to the same extent as they are now”. Having been part of an AU club, multiple societies, multiple SRSs and many of the largest student events such as Week One, Grad Ball and Summer Party, he asserts that leaves him in “the best possible position and with the knowledge pool required to take on the position of FSO”
Images by Helen Miller