LSE SU Lent term elections open amid Union criticism

The opening of nominations on Monday, 19 February kicked off the beginning of the campaign season for LSESU Lent term elections. Lent term elections decide the most sought-after positions in the Union: Sabbatical officers, Part-Time Officers (PTOs), and committee positions.

There are eighteen positions up for grabs this term: the four Sabbatical officers (General Secretary, Education, Community & Welfare and Activities & Development Officers), plus other part-time positions, including Athletics Union (AU) President, LGBT+ Student Officer, Women’s Officer and the BME Student’s Officer.

Aspiring candidates were called to nominate themselves last week, with nominations opening Monday and ending Friday. They now have until Wednesday, 28 February — the official start of the official campaigning period — to come up with their manifestos. The campaign period lasts until Thursday, 8 March.

Hustings will be held on Wednesday and Thursday of Week 8 in order for candidates to discuss their different programs, engage students and win over voters.

Student engagement is predicted to be an obstacle during this Lent Term election. Last term, the Michaelmas elections attracted just 20% of the student population, despite the LSESU hailing it as “one of the most exciting Michaelmas elections in LSESU history”.

These Lent Term elections come in the midst of complaints regarding waning student engagement in Union activities and dis-satisfation with the running  of the Students Union, regarding issues like room bookings and financial opacity. In the midst of these concerns, it is unclear how the student electorate will engage with the election.

Bianca, an International Development postgraduate student, remains unimpressed by the state of the LSESU, telling the Beaver: “I feel like they continuously ask for our opinion on the issues present at school, but then no concrete results follow these students consultations”.

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