Candidate Handbook and Nominations Pack

On this page you will find all the information you need to know if you're planning on running in the Election. 

Nominations Form

SOAS SU Spring Election 2024

SOAS SU Spring Elections: Co-Presidents, Preferenda Portfolio Part-Time Officers and NUS Conference Delegates. In order to see all election details, including standing and voting in the election you will need to log into the SU's website using your student log in. If you experience any issues please contact suelections@soas.ac.uk

13 posts are up for election.

Nominations are now closed.

The polls open at 10:00 on Monday 26 February 2024 (in 32 hours)

Please log in to see more details.

Timeline

Monday 5th February 10am Nominations Open
Thursday 8th February 4pm Election Outreach Session
Friday 16th February 5pm Nominations Close
Thursday 22nd February 4pm Candidates Meeting
Thursday 22nd February 6pm Candidate Announcement and Campaining Begins
Friday 23rd February 6pm Hustings
Monday 26th February 10am Voting Opens
Thursday 29th February 2pm Voting Closes
Friday 1st March 6pm Results Announced
Wednesday 17th April ALL DAY NUS National Conference
Thursday 18th April ALL DAY NUS National Conference
Monday 1st July  10am Co-President's Start Date  

The SU  

As you are interested in running for a role within SOAS SU it is important that you know what we are all about. SOAS SU is a charity that represents students at SOAS. Every student at SOAS enrolled in a programme lasting over one year is automatically a member. As a membership organisation we’re led by our members who get to set the direction and make the big decisions about the things that we do. At SOAS SU we campaign, represent and support students by:  

  • Organising events  

  • Providing clubs and Societies  

  • Campaigning on issues that affect students  

  • Representing student issue in the school at SOAS committees and boards  

  • Working directly with students to address issues and provide individual support  

  • Running the SU Bar, Shop and Coffee Pod  

  

Did you know that SOAS SU has a history dating back to early 1900! You can find out more about our history here.  

 

The Roles  

In this election there are 13 roles available, these include the 4 Sabbatical Officers, 8 Preferenda Portfolio Part-Time Officers and 1 NUS Conference Delegate.  

Sabbatical Officers for 2024/25  

During this election students will be electing the four Co-President roles for 2024/24. These roles are full-time paid positions. The students elected to these roles will be responsible for representing and campaigning on behalf of SOAS students.   For the 2024/25 academic year they will recieve a salary of £29,657.80 (inclusive of the London Weighting)

The roles available are:  

Co-President Democracy & Education

The Co-President Democracy and Education is responsible for ensuring that students voices are heard in the University and the SU, by being a member of the Universities Board of Trustees, championing students educational experience, working with Student Reps and leading on democracy within the SU. As Chair of the Board of Trustees they are also ultimately responsible for the leadership and direction of the SU. 

Dates: 1st July – 31st July  

Hours: 35 hours per week, Monday-Friday 

Representative and Campaigner 

  1. Work alongside students, finding out their views and experiences and advocating on their behalf.  
  2. Acting in students interests by supporting student led campaigns and projects to improve their experience. 
  3. Represent SOAS students on School Committees and attend regular meetings with the Director of the School in order to make change in students' lives. 
  4. Represent the Union externally, working with other students' unions, the NUS and other organisations.  
  5. Work closely with other Union Officers and Union Staff members. 
  6. Engage in collective decision making and accountability with the Executive Committee by being accountable to them, consulting them before taking actions where practical, reporting activities as well as facilitating other members work.  
  7. Support democracy and promote active citizenship within the SU by attending and participating in democratic meetings such as General Meetings and Union Forums. 
  8. Create positive change in the SU by carrying out Union Policy set by members and your manifesto points.  

Trustee 

  1. All Sabbatical Officers are Trustees of the SU. This means that they are responsible for the finances, reputation and legal compliance of the Union.  
  2. Be responsible for ensuring the SU pursues its charitable objectives. 
  3. Oversee the governance, finance and strategy of the SU. 
  4. Ensure that the SU complies with its governing documents, charity law and other relevant legislation or regulations.  

Benefits

  1. Training and induction programme, including Trustee training and a handover between the outgoing and incoming officer team.  
  2. 30 days holiday, plus bank holidays and agreed closure days. 

Personal Profile

  1. Committed to students and SOAS SU 
  2. Ability to network, influence and communicate effectively 
  3. Willingness to represent students' opinions, even where they divert from your own 
  4. Ability to critically evaluate 
  5. Attention to detail in the context of strategic decision making 
  6. Ability to make rational and objective decisions 
  7. Act reasonably and responsibly when undertaking your responsibilities 

Responsibilities 

  1. The Co-President Democracy and Education shall be a member of the School’s Academic Board and Learning and Teaching Quality Committee as well as a member of other School committees as approved by the Board of Trustees. 
  2. The Co-President Democracy and Education shall identify areas for attention relating to the education of students and provide information to Co-President Welfare and Campaigns to aid in running campaigns where relevant. 
  3. The Co-President Democracy and Education shall sit on the School’s Board of Trustees.  
  4. The Co-President Democracy and Education shall be responsible for organising and publicising the three SU Forums working with Union staff. They shall also be responsible for maintaining the Policy File and publishing records of meetings, supported by the Communications and Governance Co-Ordinator.  
  5.  The Co-President Democracy and Education shall be the lead delegate and liaison with NUS, and shall be the first point of contact within the Union.  
  6.  The Co-President Democracy and Education shall liaise with the appropriate members of School staff in the Library, Faculties and elsewhere to ensure that Union policy and campaigns are progressed.  
  7. The Co-President Democracy and Education shall be responsible for the running of the student representation system, in liaison with the Union’s Research and Representation Assistant, and for supporting the student representatives within the School.  
  8. The Co-President Democracy and Education shall provide information on the appropriate channels through which to raise issues with the School via the student representative and School committee structures.  
  9. The Co-President Democracy and Education shall be Chair of the Union’s Board of Trustees  
  10. The Co-President Democracy and Education shall be Chair of the Influencing SOAS Forum  
  11. The Co-President Democracy and Education shall be Vice-Chair of the Governance Sub-Committee.  
  12. The Co-President Democracy and Education shall be Chair of the Reps General Assembly.  
Co-President Activities & Events s 

The Co-President Activities and Events

The Co-President Activities and Events is responsible for ensuring that  Clubs and Societies are supported and developed as well as leading on major SU events and a wider events programme. 

Dates: 1st July – 31st July 

Hours: 35 hours per week, Monday-Friday 

Representative and Campaigner 

  1. Work alongside students, finding out their views and experiences and advocating on their behalf.  
  2. Acting in students interests by supporting student led campaigns and projects to improve their experience. 
  3. Represent SOAS students on School Committees and attend regular meetings with the Director of the School in order to make change in students' lives. 
  4. Represent the Union externally, working with other students' unions, the NUS and other organisations.  
  5. Work closely with other Union Officers and Union Staff members. 
  6. Engage in collective decision making and accountability with the Executive Committee by being accountable to them, consulting them before taking actions where practical, reporting activities as well as facilitating other members work.  
  7. Support democracy and promote active citizenship within the SU by attending and participating in democratic meetings such as General Meetings and Union Forums. 
  8. Create positive change in the SU by carrying out Union Policy set by members and your manifesto points.  

Trustee 

  1. All Sabbatical Officers are Trustees of the SU. This means that they are responsible for the finances, reputation and legal compliance of the Union.  
  2. Be responsible for ensuring the SU pursues its charitable objectives. 
  3. Oversee the governance, finance and strategy of the SU. 
  4. Ensure that the SU complies with its governing documents, charity law and other relevant legislation or regulations.  

Benefits

  1. Training and induction programme, including Trustee training and a handover between the outgoing and incoming officer team.  
  2. 30 days holiday, plus bank holidays and agreed closure days. 

Personal Profile

  1. Committed to students and SOAS SU 
  2. Ability to network, influence and communicate effectively 
  3. Willingness to represent students' opinions, even where they divert from your own 
  4. Ability to critically evaluate 
  5. Attention to detail in the context of strategic decision making 
  6. Ability to make rational and objective decisions 
  7. Act reasonably and responsibly when undertaking your responsibilities 

Responsibilities 

  1. The Co-President Activities and Events shall be responsible for encouraging the formation, and success of societies and sports teams within the Union.  
  2. The Co-President Activities and Events shall be responsible for organising the Societies Fayre in the first and second term and other events relating to societies.  
  3. The Co-President Activities and Events shall also be the main point of contact with the British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS) and seek Sport Development opportunities from regional and national Bodies.  
  4. The Co-President Activities and Events shall be responsible for preparing an up-to-date list of active societies and publicising this. They shall also be responsible for the Sports and Societies area of the website and promoting its use, with support from the Communications and Governance Co-Ordinator.  
  5. The Co-President Activities and Events shall oversee the Union’s publicity policy and they ensure Union events are appropriately publicised on the Union website and via printed publications.  
  6. The Co-President Activities and Events shall be responsible for ensuring that societies’ budgets are set in line with SU procedures. The Co-President Activities and Events shall ensure that clubs and societies are spending their funds according to the stated aims of the Union and in the interests of each society’s members. 
  7. The Co-President Activities and Events shall be responsible for ensuring that societies are aware of regulations pertaining to the running of societies and that they abide by them. The Co-President Activities and Events shall be responsible for ensuring that all sports and societies have adequate training and information about health and safety issues and abide by policies set.  
  8. The Co-President Activities and Events, with the Co-President Equality and Liberation, shall be responsible for promoting and monitoring equality and diversity within sports, societies and extracurricular student activities.  
  9. Working with the Commercial Services Manager, the Co-President Activities and Events shall be responsible for organising a programme of Union entertainments. Reports on each event’s finances should be reported to the Union. They must ensure that all Union events are appropriately publicised.  
  10. The Co-President Activities and Events shall be responsible for funds raised for charity and must ensure that any fundraising on campus by societies and by the Students’ Union is followed through with an appropriate receipt and report. This is to be included in a report to the Board of Trustees.  
  11. The Co-President Activities and Events shall be the Chair of the SU Operations Forum.  
  12. The Co-President Activities and Events shall be the Vice-Chair of the Commercial Services Sub-Committee.  
  13. The Co-President Activities and Events shall be the Chair of the Societies Presidents Forum  
  14. The Co-President Activities and Events shall be the Chair of the Sports Forum  
Co-President Welfare & Campaigns

Co-President Welfare and Campaigns  

The Co-President Welfare and Campaigns is responsible for ensuring that the welfare of students is prioritised within the union and university, developing campaigns and initiatives that seek to improve student experience.  

Dates: 1st July – 31st July

Hours: 35 hours per week, Monday-Friday 

Representative and Campaigner 

  1. Work alongside students, finding out their views and experiences and advocating on their behalf.  
  2. Acting in students interests by supporting student led campaigns and projects to improve their experience. 
  3. Represent SOAS students on School Committees and attend regular meetings with the Director of the School in order to make change in students' lives. 
  4. Represent the Union externally, working with other students' unions, the NUS and other organisations.  
  5. Work closely with other Union Officers and Union Staff members. 
  6. Engage in collective decision making and accountability with the Executive Committee by being accountable to them, consulting them before taking actions where practical, reporting activities as well as facilitating other members work.  
  7. Support democracy and promote active citizenship within the SU by attending and participating in democratic meetings such as General Meetings and Union Forums. 
  8. Create positive change in the SU by carrying out Union Policy set by members and your manifesto points.  

Trustee 

  1. All Sabbatical Officers are Trustees of the SU. This means that they are responsible for the finances, reputation and legal compliance of the Union.  
  2. Be responsible for ensuring the SU pursues its charitable objectives. 
  3. Oversee the governance, finance and strategy of the SU. 
  4. Ensure that the SU complies with its governing documents, charity law and other relevant legislation or regulations.  

Benefits

  1. Training and induction programme, including Trustee training and a handover between the outgoing and incoming officer team.  
  2. 30 days holiday, plus bank holidays and agreed closure days. 

Personal Profile

  1. Committed to students and SOAS SU 
  2. Ability to network, influence and communicate effectively 
  3. Willingness to represent students' opinions, even where they divert from your own 
  4. Ability to critically evaluate 
  5. Attention to detail in the context of strategic decision making 
  6. Ability to make rational and objective decisions 
  7. Act reasonably and responsibly when undertaking your responsibilities 

Responsibilities 

  1. The Co-President Welfare and Campaigns shall represent the Union on the School’s Student Experience Committee, Resources and Planning Committee and on other committees as agreed by the Board of Trustees.  
  2. The Co-President Welfare and Campaigns shall be responsible for maintaining a confidential and safe environment within their office in which sensitive issues can be discussed. They shall ensure that all issues raised shall remain confidential unless otherwise authorised by the individual or required by law.  
  3. The Co-President Welfare and Campaigns shall refer students to appropriate internal or external bodies to help resolve a member’s issues. They shall not take on casework. 
  4. The Co-President Welfare and Campaigns shall identify areas for attention relating to general welfare of students and run campaigns where relevant. 
  5. The Co-President Welfare and Campaigns shall liaise with the School’s Student Advice and Wellbeing on welfare issues and encourage the use of the services within the School.  
  6. The Co-President Welfare and Campaigns shall liaise with the appropriate members of School staff in the Library, Faculties and elsewhere to ensure that Union policy and campaigns are progressed.  
  7. The Co-President Welfare and Campaigns shall liaise with the other Co-Presidents to campaign and raise awareness amongst students on education, equality and welfare issues and on education and welfare services available to members.  
  8. The Co-President Welfare and Campaigns shall liaise and meet with Sanctuary Students and other accommodation providers.  
  9. The Co-President Welfare and Campaigns shall work with the Welfare and Advice Caseworker to review casework relating to the student experience at SOAS in order to develop initiatives which might improve that experience.  
  10. The Co-President Welfare and Campaigns shall be the Chair of the SU Campaigns Forum. 
  11. The Co-President Welfare and Campaigns shall be the Chair of the Ethical and Environmental Forum.  
  12. The Co-President Welfare and Campaigns shall be the Chair of the Welfare Reps Forum.  
  13. The Co-President Welfare and Campaigns shall be the Vice-Chair of the Finance and Risk Sub-Committee.  
Co-President Equality & Liberation

The Co-President Equality and Liberation

The Co-President Equality and Liberation is responsible for championing equality, diversity and inclusion  throughout the SU and university, ensuring students from a marginalised background are represented and their needs met.  

Dates: 1st July - 31st July 

Hours: 35 hours per week, Monday-Friday 

Representative and Campaigner 

  1. Work alongside students, finding out their views and experiences and advocating on their behalf.  
  2. Acting in students interests by supporting student led campaigns and projects to improve their experience. 
  3. Represent SOAS students on School Committees and attend regular meetings with the Director of the School in order to make change in students' lives. 
  4. Represent the Union externally, working with other students' unions, the NUS and other organisations.  
  5. Work closely with other Union Officers and Union Staff members. 
  6. Engage in collective decision making and accountability with the Executive Committee by being accountable to them, consulting them before taking actions where practical, reporting activities as well as facilitating other members work.  
  7. Support democracy and promote active citizenship within the SU by attending and participating in democratic meetings such as General Meetings and Union Forums. 
  8. Create positive change in the SU by carrying out Union Policy set by members and your manifesto points.  

Trustee 

  1. All Sabbatical Officers are Trustees of the SU. This means that they are responsible for the finances, reputation and legal compliance of the Union.  
  2. Be responsible for ensuring the SU pursues its charitable objectives. 
  3. Oversee the governance, finance and strategy of the SU. 
  4. Ensure that the SU complies with its governing documents, charity law and other relevant legislation or regulations.  

Benefits

  1. Training and induction programme, including Trustee training and a handover between the outgoing and incoming officer team.  
  2. 30 days holiday, plus bank holidays and agreed closure days. 

Personal Profile

  1. Committed to students and SOAS SU 
  2. Ability to network, influence and communicate effectively 
  3. Willingness to represent students' opinions, even where they divert from your own 
  4. Ability to critically evaluate 
  5. Attention to detail in the context of strategic decision making 
  6. Ability to make rational and objective decisions 
  7. Act reasonably and responsibly when undertaking your responsibilities 

Responsibilities 

  1. The Co-President Equality and Liberation shall be responsible for promoting equality and diversity in all of the Union’s work, and ensuring that women students, black and minority ethnicity students, LGBTQ students, trans and non-binary students, disabled and carer students, working class students, mature students, international students, students of faith and any other marginalised groups of students are represented within the Union and that their needs met by the School.  
  2. The Co-President Equality and Liberation shall be responsible for monitoring and promoting the Union’s Equality and Diversity Policy.  
  3. The Co-President Equality and Liberation shall sit on the School’s Equality and Diversity Committee, and any other committees deemed appropriate.  
  4. The Co-President Equality and Liberation shall work closely with the Union’s liberation officers and support their work whilst respect the autonomy of each liberation group, as well as the Mature Students Officer and International Students Officer. 
  5. The Co-President Equality and Liberation shall work with the Co-President Activities and Events in promoting and monitoring equality and diversity within sports, societies and extracurricular student activities.  
  6. The Co-President Equality and Liberation shall identify areas for attention relating to equality and liberation and, working with the Co-President Welfare and Campaigns, run campaigns where relevant.  
  7. The Co-President Equality and Liberation shall be responsible for working to prevent and responding to incidents of harassment, abuse and discrimination on campus, with the support of the Union’s Advice and Welfare Caseworker and the relevant School staff.  
  8. The Co-President Equality and Liberation shall refer students to appropriate internal or external bodies to help resolve a member’s issues. They shall not take on casework for which they are not qualified.  
  9. The Co-President Equality and Liberation shall liaise with the appropriate members of School staff in the Library, Faculties and elsewhere to ensure that Union policy and campaigns are progressed.  
  10. The Co-President Liberation and Equality shall convene and become the link for the six liberation caucuses.  
  11. The Co-President Liberation and Equality shall convene and facilitate other networks and communities of students who wish to come together based on their identity or circumstances.  
  12. The Co-President Liberation and Equality shall be the Vice-Chair of the People and talent Sub-Committee. 

Preferenda Portfolio Part-Time Officers 2023/24  

These roles are voluntary, part-time executive roles and the students elected into post will remain in office until July 31st.    

The roles available are:  

Sustainability Officer 

Salary: Voluntary 

Dates: 1st March 2024 – 31st July 2024 

Hours: Approx 2-3 hours per week 

 

Responsible for championing sustainable initiatives within the SU and University, working closely with the Officer Team and relevant Union and University staff.  

Coordinate the work and campaigns relating to sustainability with the rest of the SU, in order to ensure that such activities are as effective and engaging as possible 

Work with the wider Executive Committee to deliver campaigns and activities as laid out by Union Policy on matters relating to sustainability. 

Work alongside students, finding out their views and experiences and advocating on their behalf on matters relating to sustainability. 

Acting in students interests by supporting student led campaigns and projects relating to sustainability to improve their experience 

Where requested to do so, represent SOAS students on School Committees on matters relating to sustainability. 

Work closely with other Union Officers and Union Staff members 

Engage in collective decision making and accountability with the Executive Committee by being accountable to them, consulting them before taking actions where practical, reporting activities as well as facilitating other members work  

Support democracy and promote active citizenship within the SU by attending and participating in democratic meetings such as General Meetings and Union Forums. 

Create positive change in the SU by carrying out Union Policy set by members and your manifesto points. 

Students Against Securitisation and Surveillance (SASS) Officer  

Salary: Voluntary 

Dates: 1st March 2024 – 31st July 2024 

Hours: Approx 2-3 hours per week 

 

Responsible for championing Students Against Securitisation and Surveillance within the SU and University, working closely with the SASS Campaign, the Officer Team and relevant Union and University staff. 

Coordinate the work and campaigns relating to Securitisation and Surveillance with the rest of the SU, in order to ensure that such activities are as effective and engaging as possible. 

Work with the wider Executive Committee to deliver campaigns and activities as laid out by Union Policy on matters relating to Securitisation and Surveillance. 

Work alongside students, finding out their views and experiences and advocating on their behalf on matters relating to Securitisation and Surveillance. 

Acting in students interests by supporting student led campaigns and projects relating to Securitisation and Surveillance to improve their experience. 

Where requested to do so, represent SOAS students on School Committees on matters relating to Securitisation and Surveillance. 

Work closely with other Union Officers and Union Staff members. 

Engage in collective decision making and accountability with the Executive Committee by being accountable to them, consulting them before taking actions where practical, reporting activities as well as facilitating other members work  

Support democracy and promote active citizenship within the SU by attending and participating in democratic meetings such as General Meetings and Union Forums. 

Create positive change in the SU by carrying out Union Policy set by members and your manifesto points. 

Anti-Racism Action Officer 

Salary: Voluntary 

Dates: 1st March 2024 – 31st July 2024 

Hours: Approx 2-3 hours per week 

 

Responsible for championing Anti-Racist initiatives within the SU and University, working closely with the relevant Liberation Caucuses, Officer Team, and relevant Union and University staff. 

Coordinate the work and campaigns relating to anti-racism action with the rest of the SU, in order to ensure that such activities are as effective and engaging as possible 

Work with the wider Executive Committee to deliver campaigns and activities as laid out by Union Policy on matters relating to anti-racism action. 

Work alongside students, finding out their views and experiences and advocating on their behalf on matters relating to anti-racism action. 

Acting in students interests by supporting student led campaigns and projects relating to anti-racism action to improve their experience 

Where requested to do so represent SOAS students on School Committees on matters relating to anti-racism action. 

Work closely with other Union Officers and Union Staff members 

Engage in collective decision making and accountability with the Executive Committee by being accountable to them, consulting them before taking actions where practical, reporting activities as well as facilitating other members work  

Support democracy and promote active citizenship within the SU by attending and participating in democratic meetings such as General Meetings and Union Forums. 

Create positive change in the SU by carrying out Union Policy set by members and your manifesto points. 

Mental Health Awareness Officer 

Salary: Voluntary 

Dates: 1st March 2024 – 31st July 2024 

Hours: Approx 2-3 hours per week 

 

Responsible for championing mental health awareness initiatives within the SU and University, working closely with the Officer Team, and relevant Union and University staff. 

Coordinate the work and campaigns relating to mental health awareness with the rest of the SU, in order to ensure that such activities are as effective and engaging as possible 

Work with the wider Executive Committee to deliver campaigns and activities as laid out by Union Policy on matters relating to mental health awareness 

Work alongside students, finding out their views and experiences and advocating on their behalf on matters relating to mental health awareness 

Acting in students interests by supporting student led campaigns and projects relating to mental health awareness to improve their experience 

Where requested to do so represent SOAS students on School Committees on matters relating to mental health awareness 

Work closely with other Union Officers and Union Staff members 

Engage in collective decision making and accountability with the Executive Committee by being accountable to them, consulting them before taking actions where practical, reporting activities as well as facilitating other members work  

Support democracy and promote active citizenship within the SU by attending and participating in democratic meetings such as General Meetings and Union Forums. 

Create positive change in the SU by carrying out Union Policy set by members and your manifesto points. 

Arts and Culture Officer 

Salary: Voluntary 

Dates: 1st March 2024 – 31st July 2024 

Hours: Approx 2-3 hours per week 

 

Responsible for championing arts and culture initiatives within the SU and University, working closely with relevant Clubs and Societies, the Officer Team and relevant Union and University staff. 

Coordinate the work and campaigns relating to arts and culture with the rest of the SU, in order to ensure that such activities are as effective and engaging as possible 

Work with the wider Executive Committee to deliver campaigns and activities as laid out by Union Policy on matters relating to arts and culture 

Work alongside students, finding out their views and experiences and advocating on their behalf on matters relating to arts and culture 

Acting in students interests by supporting student led campaigns and projects relating to arts and culture to improve their experience 

Where requested to do so represent SOAS students on School Committees on matters relating to arts and culture 

Work closely with other Union Officers and Union Staff members 

Engage in collective decision making and accountability with the Executive Committee by being accountable to them, consulting them before taking actions where practical, reporting activities as well as facilitating other members work  

Support democracy and promote active citizenship within the SU by attending and participating in democratic meetings such as General Meetings and Union Forums. 

Create positive change in the SU by carrying out Union Policy set by members and your manifesto points. 

Cost of Living Campaigns Officer 

Salary: Voluntary 

Dates: 1st March 2024 – 31st July 2024  

Hours: Approx 2-3 hours per week 

 

Responsible for championing initiatives related to the Cost of Living Crisis within the SU and University, working closely with the Officer Team and relevant Union and University staff. 

Coordinate the work and campaigns relating to the cost of living with the rest of the SU, in order to ensure that such activities are as effective and engaging as possible 

Work with the wider Executive Committee to deliver campaigns and activities as laid out by Union Policy on matters relating to cost of living. 

Work alongside students, finding out their views and experiences and advocating on their behalf on matters relating to cost of living. 

Acting in students interests by supporting student led campaigns and projects relating to cost of living to improve their experience 

Where requested to do so represent SOAS students on School Committees on matters relating to cost of living 

Work closely with other Union Officers and Union Staff members 

Engage in collective decision making and accountability with the Executive Committee by being accountable to them, consulting them before taking actions where practical, reporting activities as well as facilitating other members work  

Support democracy and promote active citizenship within the SU by attending and participating in democratic meetings such as General Meetings and Union Forums. 

Create positive change in the SU by carrying out Union Policy set by members and your manifesto points. 

International Students Officer 

Salary: Voluntary 

Dates: 1st March 2024 – 31st July 2024 

Hours: Approx 2-3 hours per week 

 

Responsible for championing initiatives relating to the international students experience within the SU and University, working closely with relevant Clubs and Societies, the Officer Team and relevant Union and University staff. 

Coordinate the work and campaigns relating to international students with the rest of the SU, in order to ensure that such activities are as effective and engaging as possible 

Work with the wider Executive Committee to deliver campaigns and activities as laid out by Union Policy on matters relating to international students 

Work alongside students, finding out their views and experiences and advocating on their behalf on matters relating to international students 

Acting in students interests by supporting student led campaigns and projects relating to international students to improve their experience 

Where requested to do so represent SOAS students on School Committees on matters relating to international students 

Work closely with other Union Officers and Union Staff members 

Engage in collective decision making and accountability with the Executive Committee by being accountable to them, consulting them before taking actions where practical, reporting activities as well as facilitating other members work  

Support democracy and promote active citizenship within the SU by attending and participating in democratic meetings such as General Meetings and Union Forums. 

Create positive change in the SU by carrying out Union Policy set by members and your manifesto points. 

Afrikan Studies Officer 

Salary: Voluntary 

Dates: 1st March 2024 – 31st July 2024 

Hours: Approx 2-3 hours per week 

 

Responsible for championing initiatives relating to afrikan studies within the SU and University, working closely with relevant Liberation Caucuses, relevant Clubs and Societies, the Officer Team and relevant Union and University staff. 

Coordinate the work and campaigns relating to afrikan studies with the rest of the SU, in order to ensure that such activities are as effective and engaging as possible 

Work with the wider Executive Committee to deliver campaigns and activities as laid out by Union Policy on matters relating to afrikan studies 

Work alongside students, finding out their views and experiences and advocating on their behalf on matters relating to afrikan studies 

Acting in students interests by supporting student led campaigns and projects relating to afrikan studies to improve their experience 

Where requested to do so represent SOAS students on School Committees on matters relating to afrikan studies 

Work closely with other Union Officers and Union Staff members 

Engage in collective decision making and accountability with the Executive Committee by being accountable to them, consulting them before taking actions where practical, reporting activities as well as facilitating other members work  

Support democracy and promote active citizenship within the SU by attending and participating in democratic meetings such as General Meetings and Union Forums. 

Create positive change in the SU by carrying out Union Policy set by members and your manifesto points. 

NUS Conference Delegate 2023/24  

Each year the NUS National Conference takes place. This is an opportunity to debate the issues that matter most to students, set NUS policy and campaigns, attend workshops and events and network with other student leaders. This year's National Conference is on the 17-18th April 2024 in Blackpool. Conference, travel, and accommodation expenses will be covered.   

NUS Conference Delegate x 1 place 

  

Nominations  

Only Student Members of the SU are eligible to stand as a candidate in the election.  

Nominations must be submitted by the deadline and must include the following, any nominations that are incomplete by the deadline will not be accepted: 

  • Proposer and Seconder (you must get the students permission) 

  • Manifesto (No longer than 500 words)  

Candidates shall need to request their proposers/seconder to contact the Elections Clerk to confirm their intent to proposer/second your nomination.

Candidates are also asked to submit a photo alongside their nomination.   This photo will be used by the SU in a range of election promotion.

Candidates shall only be eligible to nominate themselves for one role per type (Sabbatical Officer, Preferenda Portfolio Officer and NUS Conference Delegate).   

Events  

As a prospective candidate you are encouraged to come to the Elections Information Session on Thursday 8th February at 4pm in the Ambedkar Studio in the SU.

All candidates will need to attend the Candidate Briefing on Thursday 22nd February at 4pm in R201.

All candidates for Co-President roles shall also need to attend the Hustings on Friday 23rd February at 6pm in the JCR.

Manifesto’s  

You are required to submit a manifesto as a part of the nominations process. This is your chance to state what you intend to do if you were to be elected. Your manifesto can be up to 500 words.  

Your manifesto will be available for voters to view. You don’t have to submit your manifesto at the same time as your nomination, but it must be submitted by the nomination's deadline.  

A strong manifesto will reflect the feelings of students, it will be evidenced based and include the current issues that matter most to students and how you will approach this. Think about why you want to run and write it down! It is also worth remembering that there are many types of students at SOAS so think about who your audience is. You might want to ask yourself the following questions:  

  1. What are you interested in and what motivates you?  

  1. What makes you angry?  

  1. What does the SU already do that I’m interested in?  

  1. Why does this role matter to you?  

Finally, make sure your manifesto falls into the remit of the role you are nominating yourself for!  

What to Include 

You will want to include:  

  • Who you are  

  • What role you are running for  

  • Any relevant experience you have  

  • Three to five policies that are the most important to you and the most appealing to students.  

Be original and creative, but also practical. Students will expect you to achieve whatever you lay out in your manifesto, so it is important that you keep this in mind. They will also know if something is unrealistic. The best policies strike the balance between what students want and what is achievable in a year. You might also want to speak to one of the current Officers or a member of Union Staff to find out what has already happened on this issue.   

Manifesto Structure 

Below is a simple guideline on how to set out your manifesto; you can lay your manifesto out as you wish. But feel free to use this template as a basic idea.  

Introduction:  

Hello my name is....  

I am running for...  

I am running because...  

I have these experiences which I could use to benefit students...  

I have previously been involved with SOAS SU through...  

   

Key Campaign Points:  

If elected I will campaign on the Following things:  

1. Campaign Point 1  

This issue is important because...  

I will achieve this through...  

   

2. Campaign Point 2  

This issue is important because...  

I will achieve this through...  

   

3. Campaign Point 3  

This issue is important because...  

I will achieve this through...  

   

Closing Statement:  

Please make sure you remember to go out and vote...  

My name is... and I am running for... Please consider voting for me  

   

You could also include contact information and links to where to vote - SOASunion.org/elections 

Manifesto Transparency  

Being elected to Sabbatical and Executive Officer positions puts you in spaces and conversations you may not normally be able to access as a student. Many students use these opportunities to help promote existing student campaigns or bodies of work. It is important however that your manifesto does not unintentionally erase the work students have already put into these campaigns and works. It is important that, where mentioning a pre-existing campaign or body of work in your manifesto, you make clear:   

  • What has been your involvement in this work so far?   

  • What would you hope to do to help, given your new position?  

Finally, all candidates can ask for feedback on their manifesto from the Elections Clark   

  

Campaigning  

Campaigning can seem daunting, but it does not have to be! Find out more here about how to run a fantastic campaign more information will be provided at the candidate briefing. It's important that all campaigning is within the Election Rules.

Planning your campaign  

Look at your manifesto, which students do you think will care most about those issues, think then about how will be best to reach them. Plan using SMART Goals – Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time–Bound. A good campaign will be well thought out around key dates and activities, so make sure you do the prepatory work to make it the best it can be.   

Your Brand  

Part of your strategy may include creating a personal brand. Think about what your brand is and how this can be reflected in your campaign. Make it identifiable and clear and then stick to it, creating brand recognition with all your campaign material.   

Campaign team  

A crucial part of a successful campaign is a team that will help you spread the word. You can ask your housemates, friends from your course, or friends from student groups you are involved in. The more people who are supporting and promoting your campaign, the more students will know who you are and why they should vote for you. It is important that your campaign team are familiar with your manifesto and the rules as you will be accountable for their actions.   

Your campaign team can help you with loads of things from in-person campaigning to design.   

Physical Campaigning  

Physical campaigning might seem daunting, but it is one of the most important parts of the election, you will want to think about how you are going to navigate this.   

A good place to start is simply talking to students by going into some of the social areas on campus and politely asking if you can have a quick chat. Chat to your course mates, housemates, and the person you met that one time, and ask them to talk to their friends and get the word out.  

Please bear in mind there will be campaign free and poster free zones, these will include the Library and vicinity of the polling stations, further areas may be defined by the Returning Officer.  

Physical Campaigning 

Candidates may not campaign in designated Campaign Free Zones, Campaign Free Zones shall include:  

  1. The Library 

  1. The vicinity of any polling stations 

  2. Learning Lounge

  3. Further campaign free zones may be defined by the Returning Officer and shall be communicated with all candidates.

 

Design  

Designing engaging material is now really easy with tools like Canva, if you’re not sure how to use it there are free courses on LinkedIn Learning. Make sure whatever you create matches your brand! Our recommendation is to:  

  • Keep the poster in line with your brand  

  • Don’t overcomplicate your design  

  • It should include your name, a photo, key policies and slogans  

  • Get someone to proof read it   

Social Media   

Using social media is a great way to promote yourself but use Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Twitter, LinkedIn or Snapchat. Think about which platforms would target the students you want to vote for you and where you would be most likely to get high engagement.   

Consider if you will want to use the social media accounts you already have set up or if you will want to create election specific social media accounts. There are pros and cons to each; with new accounts you’ll need to build up followers in a relatively short time frame but also consider your privacy on existing personal accounts if you open them up to new followers and the student population. Also think about your digital footprint and what you’ve posted and been tagged in in the past!  

Examples of how you could use social media:  

  • e-posters and other graphic design elements  

  • videos (including easy to do animation)  

  • websites, blogs and podcasts  

  • sponsored posts  

  • direct messaging  

  • hosting lives  

Society and Sports Teams Endorsements

Clubs and Societies that are registered with SOAS SU are able to endorse a candidate or multiple candidates. This can help you secure additional votes, however you should me mindful of the rules surrouding endorsements.

  • In order to endorse there must be a democratic decision. This decision can be made by a majority vote of the committee or of the club or society members. This process must happen prior to an endorsement being made. If a committee member is also a candidate they must abstain from voting in this process.  

  • Candidates must not start to seek endorsements until the commencement of the campaigning period and therefore no endorsement can be made prior to the campaigning period.   

  • Clubs and Societies that have not endorsed a candidate or set of candidates must ensure equal access to the Society/Sports Team at all times.   

  • Societies and Sports Teams that have endorsed a specific candidate or set of candidates must not use society budgets towards campaigning activity. All expenses must be allocated within the candidate's budget  

  • Societies and Sports Team may inform their members of their decision to endorse a candidate by creating a graphic using their society's branding on social media, however, this branding should not form part of the candidate's campaign material, nor should any physical material be produced.   

  • Societies and Sports Team may also notify their members of their endorsement via email and encourage students to vote in the elections, however, these emailing lists must not be used for broader campaigning activities on behalf of a specific candidate. 

Candidates Budget   

Candidates must not exceed their allotted budget. The budgets are as follows:  

  1. Sabbatical Officer Candidates £20 

  1. Preferenda Portfolio Officer £10 

  1. NUS Conference Delegate roles £10   

Where a candidate is contesting more than one role the candidate shall be entitled to the budget of the role that receives the highest budget amount.  

Any products/services that candidates already own or are offered at a reduced price will be assigned a fair price to be deducted from the candidates' budget.   

Candidates must submit their Expenses Declaration no later than the close of voting, including those who did not spend anything as a part of their campaign. The Expenses Declaration must include proof of expense of all campaign materials produced or primarily used in this election.   

Candidates shall be reimbursed by SOAS SU following the approval of their Expenses Declaration. 

Assignment of a Fair Price (nominal fees)  

  • A4 Black & White | Single sided: 3p   

  • A4 Black & White | Double sided: 5p   

  • A4 Colour | Single sided: 15p   

  • A4 Colour | Double sided: 25p   

  • A3 Black & White | Single sided: 6p   

  • A3 Colour | Single sided: 25p   

  • Bed sheet for decorating: £1   

  • Plain T-shirt for decorating: £1   

  • Art equipment (colouring pens, paints, etc.): £2  

Items that you use for free, that could reasonably be used by other students will not receive a nominal fee, for example if you conducted a recycling audit, or found an old cardboard box.   

If you have any questions about nominal fees please contact the Elections Clerk. 

Candidate Expenses Tracker 

Expenses Declaration Form

  

Rules  

The elections are governed by the Election Rules, which can be viewed here. There are 6 guiding principles of the elections which ensure that the elections are free and fair, these are:

  1. Candidates must treat other candidates, students and members of the public with respect. This includes engaging in healthy debate, to not to campaign negatively or defame individuals character.  

  1. Candidates’ campaigns should be fully transparent and accountable to the union.  

  1. Candidates must not do anything to gain an unfair advantage.  

  1. Candidates must not undermine the fair and democratic running of elections.  

  1. Candidates shall be responsible for the actions of their campaign teams. 

  1. Candidates must not break any general Union and School rules and regulations. This also includes the Law. 

If you feel that the rules have been broken you may submit and election complaint.

  

Complaints 

Complaints must be submitted via the Complaints Form, provide details of the election rule which is alleged to have been broken along with evidence.  

Complaints must be received via the Complaints Form no later than one hour after the close of voting.  For this election the deadline shall be Thursday 29th February at 3pm. 

Should a candidate be in breach of the Election Rules the potential actions are: 

  1. An informal warning 

  1. A formal warning 

  1. Campaigning Ban 

  1. Disqualification 

  1. Any other action deemed necessary by the Deputy Returning Officer or Returning Officer 

Candidates can appeal a decision using the Union's Complaints Procedure. For the purpose of that Procedure they will be entering at the Appeals stage.  

Please see the Election Rules for more information.

  

Key Staff  

Elections Clerk (EC) - Charlotte Morris-Davis, SOAS SU: Responsible for setting up and administering the elections. Your first contact for any election-related questions or complaints, the Elections Clerk will escalate your query or complaint as necessary. This role sits within the Students’ Union.   

Deputy Returning Officer (DRO) - Emily Chapman, SOAS: Responsible for making decisions on all election complaints and issues. Your first contact for any complaints against the Elections Clerk. This role sits within SOAS.   

Returning Officer (RO): NUS - Responsible for making final decisions on difficult or complex complaints and issues. You will not need to contact the RO directly. This role sits within the NUS.  

  

 Elections FAQ's

When do elections take place?

Elections for Reps and the Preferenda Portfolio roles normally take place in the Autumn Term. Elections for the Co-President roles takes place in the Spring Term. The timeline for elections will be published prior to the election taking place in the election notice.

How does voting work?

Voting in SOAS SU Elections uses Single Transferable Vote (STV). STV means that candidates do not need to win a majority, but instead must reach a quota/proportion of the vote. The quota is determined by the number of votes cast and the number of positions to be filled. The quota is: Total votes cast / (Number of ‘seats’ available +1) +1
 
When voting students select their candidates in order of preference and are able to vote for as many or as few as they like. When the voting has closed, Candidates are excluded if it is impossible for them to reach the quota, their votes are then transferred in order of preference, this ensures that fewer votes are wasted.  In addition to the candidates in the election students are also able to select Re-open Nominations.  

Can International Student Stand and Vote?

Yes, international students can normally be a Sabbatical Officer, and Visa extensions can be granted for the purposes of undertaking a Sabbatical role. You will be liable for paying any additional fees. If you have any questions please contact the School’s Immigration Team.  

Find out more on the UKCISA website.  

International students can also run for Part-Time roles and NUS Conference Delegate roles as these are voluntary and do not have set or regular hours.

Can I undertake the roles alongside studying?

For Part-Time and NUS Delegate roles absolutely, you will need to be enrolled in a current programme of study.  

For Sabbatical roles, you will be expected to work Monday-Friday, 10am-6pm, therefore continuing full-time study is not normally possible.

Where can I find out more about election rules?

When an election is taking place the election rules will be published online and you will be able to view them. All students will be able to make a complaint if a candidate or their team is breaching the rules. 

 

Questions

Interested but not sure where to start? If you've got any questions please contact the Elections Clerk at SUelections@soas.ac.uk

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