Thinking about running in the SU Elections, but not sure if it’s for you? We know there are lots of questions and misconceptions about elections that might put you off running. We’ve put together some answers and myth busters to help you decide whether running in the elections is for you.
1. The President and Vice President role isn’t a real job – WRONG!
This is often one of the biggest misconceptions about the role of the President and Vice President, many people don’t see it as a proper job only people who ‘can’t let go’ run for these positions. This couldn’t be more untrue.
As President or Vice President, you have the power to make real change across the university and impact the lives of all students. You work full time as part of the wider SU team working on a whole host of different projects throughout your time in office which equips you with the skills needed to help you in the next stages of your career.
Employers love individuality, there are hundreds of Harper students out there but only a few who can say they’ve held these positions, and they stand out.
2. I've not been involved with the SU before, can I still run?
100%! You don’t need to have any history or experience with the Students’ Union to run for this election. The SU is here to represent ALL students and to give the best student experience possible. So, as long as you’ve got some idea’s on how to better the university experience for your fellow students and a passionate mindset, then GO FOR IT!
With 13 roles available, both part-time and full-time, there is something for everyone!
3. I'm an international student, am I still eligible to run?
Of course!! We even have a specific International Student Rep role which you can get involved with and represent the views of your fellow international students but you can also run for any position on the SU Executive Committee. The SU will support you and help you fill out any visa forms if it's a full-time position you're looking to go for!
4. I don’t know enough people to run...
People commonly mistake the elections for a popularity contest, this may have been the case in the past but not anymore! Your campaign and manifesto are the important part for any candidate and voters will want to hear your reasons behind running.
Social media can play a huge role in any election, especially this year. Use it to reach out and connect with as many students as possible. Use your campaign team to spread your message beyond your course or friendship circle. No one knows everyone.
5. The Part-time roles take up too much time and I won’t be able to balance my studies...
This is another popular misconception. The part-time roles don’t require your full-time attention and can easily run side-by-side with your studies. It is good to have a work/life balance and being on the SU is a great way of achieving that.
6. I’ve never run a campaign before...
The majority of people that run in SU Elections have never run a campaign before, so don’t let that get to you! The key to running any campaign is to have a clear idea of what changes you want to make across the university, inspire others and connect with people. Plus, the candidates briefing will give you all the information you need about how to run a campaign, the dos and don’ts so no need to worry about this!
7. I'm worried about delaying starting my career...
Working as President or Vice President is not delaying your career or delaying finding your dream job. It is a stepping stone to getting that dream job or career path. You will learn so many skills we don’t have time to list them all and these skills will be looked upon and valued by any future employer and make you even more employable.
It is a chance to reflect on your time at Harper to improve the things you like and change what you dislike whilst learning and developing yourself as a person.
8. I’m just ensure in general…
It’s completely fine to still be unsure on whether the SU Elections are something for you. Talk to us! We’re here to answer any questions you might have! Drop us an email on firstname.lastname@example.org.