Hustings for Derwent JCRC elections took place from 8pm on Tuesday of week 7 and were held in the college’s hub, D Bar.
The first speeches were from candidates for the position of Campaigns Officer. Emma Sanderson and Maddy Kirkman are running as a pair, and the other candidate is Thomas Ron. Ron caused an eruption of applause and cheering when he took to the stage and talked about the role of Campaigns Officer needing better defining, as well as proposing a pro-active approach to problem-solving for the college. Sanderson and Kirkman spoke enthusiastically about their passion and cited getting YUSU to send out emails as a way of raising awareness of college events which should be looked into.
Many speeches throughout the evening focused on Derwent’s reputation for being a sociable college, and some candidates sought to build on this further. Elizabeth Villanueva, Lucy Winship, Maisie Kelly and Samuel Davies, who are running a a group for the ents reps positions, said specifically that they want to “make D Bar the place to pre-drink” before nights out. Their opponents, Charles Wain, Rory Brimmer, Andy Bostock and Millie Paterson, focused on Club D events, Derwent’s regular college-wide club nights, arguing that they should be “less like a school disco”. After their speeches, the candidates for this position had a dance-off to Gangnam Style, which featured Maisie Kelly performing the worm on stage.
Other challenges included the candidates for the position of International Officer singing a national anthem or Eurovision song of their choice and the candidates for Alumni Rep and LGBT Rep eating as many dry Weetabix as they could in a minute.
The challenges went down well with the impressive audience and broke up the long periods of speeches well. However, the number of people who turned out for the event shows that there is a serious interest in college politics within Derwent. This interest has definitely not gone unnoticed, as the (unopposed) team running for Sports Reps and both pairs running for the Secretary position proposed some sort of bulletin or news letter to tell the college’s students what they’re up to.
The Sport Rep candidates, however, specifically wanted “dick of the week” and “dick of the day” to be a part of their bulletins, which could potentially cause some controversy.
Candidates for the Chair and two Vice Chair positions were last to speak, with both pairs for Vice Chair – Welfare proposing an anonymous, online alternative to a drop-in, and both pairs of candidates for Vice Chair – Ents focusing on Big D. Specifically, it was suggested that Big D should feature bigger artists and cater to a wider range of musical tastes.
The position of JCRC Chair was hotly contested by Simon Varley, Adam Seldon, and Anmoli Sodha. Sodha’s speech hinged upon her achievements over the past year as Treasurer, which include quadrupling the Committee’s cash reserves and getting club sponsorship deals. Seldon was the previous RAG rep and spoke about his success in that position, as well as arguing that Derwent needs to “adapt to [its] expansion”. Varley focused more on the JCRC itself than his opponents did, proposing a reformation to increase accountability and transparency, which was met with rapturous applause.
Voting for all positions opens on Wednesday.