SSC Committee Positions: Scores On The Doors

SSC Charities Officer – George Parker 6/10

RAG Week, Race 2, and Jailbreak are all cash cows of the highest order. It’s difficult to screw them up, and to be fair, George hasn’t. Her report contains exactly the right number of buzzwords (cohesive, impressive, synergy) to make it have zero actual value and she will clearly do well at KPMG or somewhere similar. She does however ruin it by closing an official document with “#chazza4lyf”. Dock that woman a point.

SSC Societies Officer – Courtney Lewis 9/10

Courtney is probably one of the busiest members of any committee in St Andrews. There are a staggering number of societies affiliated to the Union (136), and every single one has almost weekly dealings with the Socs Committee which Courtney chairs. She has ably marshalled the move to the new Societies portal, dealing with #redev, and has sat through some of the longest and dullest meetings in the building. Why no 10? There is still a lot of red tape involved with running a society, and as a two-year President, I wish there was less.

SSC Debates Officer – Will Lord 8/10

One thing you always know you’ll get with a Debates Officer is eloquence; Will maintains that stereotype, and debates have remained as popular as ever under his governorship, and the £2.5k Accenture sponsorship deal is worthy of some praise. I have worked in fundraising for debating and it’s a tough sell. St Andrews is world-famous for debating, and continues to be so.  (Rare sincerity from you there… Ed.)

SSC Performing Arts Officer (Mermaids) – David Patterson 6.5/10

12 months ago, when DP was first elected to Mermaids officer, I bet that he would be President 13 months later. Hence it was with no surprise that I read his name on the nominations sheet; whether he wins or not is yet to come, but his performance as Mermaids officer is likely to influence the result. I have heard few complaints about the man who pretends to know everyone, so it’s difficult for me to mark him down, although I will do so on the basis of three things: he budgeted for free wine at EVERY event, he refused to sell Xmas Ball tickets online, and more on a personal level, his FB profile picture is of him posing at the Holocaust memorial in Berlin, which I object to on principle.

SSC Music Officer (Music is Love) – Anna Merryfield 8/10

Music is Love is perhaps the most niche thing the Union does officially. MIL does produce some really good varied music nights, and I’ve no doubt Anna is a bit part of that. It treads that difficult line between populist and hipster, getting the numbers in but also making sure that those in half-cardigans and lenseless spectacles don’t feel too mainstream. Anna says she wouldn’t change anything she’s done this year. That’s ballsy.

SSC Broadcasting Officer (St Andrews Radio) – Oscar Swedrup 3/10

This man is currently one of the people I work for, which makes this a little awkward. His opening line of his AGM report – “A year of quality, community and creativity” – is as cheesy as it is untrue. STAR is still as closed a book as it ever was; the majority of students have no idea what it is, those with shows on it are given almost no training or backing in their own ideas, and the quality of output is atrocious. STAR committee seems to be more focused on making sure they enjoy their own parties than building a brand. The latest “promotional” video, which overstepped ‘misguided’ into the realms of ‘bizarre’, is an excellent example of the lack of understanding of what STAR requires.

SSC Entertainments Officer (Ents) – Fiona Woodhall 4/10

This is often one of the most under-celebrated members of any Union committee, requiring technical knowledge, physical strength, and tremendous resilience. With #redev in full flow, there can have been few harder years to run Ents Crew. Having Daniel Palmer (former Head of Ents) as DoES made life a lot easier, but the difficulties of running a multipurpose nightclub on a building site run into the hundreds. Dealing with endless other societies and committees trying to realise impossible dreams must also be a serious challenge – Fiona’s reference to RAG Week’s “novel takes on classic events” is too thinly veiled not to be a dig…That being said, the turnout to most of the Ents events this year has been devastatingly low, and that must be laid at someone’s door. Tough job, tough score.

SSC Member Without Portfolio – Keith Cordrey 10/10

This post is something of a joke (who can forget Henry Hayes’ “I honestly don’t care” campaign) and Keith treated as such. His report is worth reading in full.

“12 months ago I spoke of a prophecy in which an ancient man would return when a worthy member without portfolio appeared. The ancient man would return on a pure white horse with a portfolio of the utmost importance and made of fine Italian leather at a time when the Association was most in need. I believed I could be that member without portfolio to fulfil the ancient prophecy.  But apparently I’m not, ’cause he never showed up. So instead I read some minutes and wrote some tweets.”

The Students’ Associations report can be read in full here.

A quick guide to St Andrews election lingo

Want to know who the SSC actually are, or what an earth DoSDA stands for? You’re in the right place – this is a comprehensive guide to EAISA (Every Acronym In St Andrews).

SAB – The Students’ Association Board is where the real power lies in the Union. Thirteen people, namely the four Sabbs, the Association Chair, the SRC Senior Officer, the SSC Senior Officer, and six external non-student members make up the committee and the buck stops with them for all the Association’s operations and budgeting, and they are responsible for maintaining the Union’s charitable. Dr Frank Quinalt is currently the chairman.

SSC – This is now called the Union Council, but everyone still calls the Student Societies Council. All the societies of which every student is automatically a member (Mermaids, STAR, LGBT etc) have their leader sit on the Council. These leaders are elected during the elections in the second semester. They vote on the direction of the Union with regard to societies and extra-curricular opportunities for students. The DoSDA is a senior member of the SSC who reports on its activity to the SAB (see acronyms are fun!).

SRC – This is the other major committee to which we elect members. The Students’ Representative Council is made up of elected members. They are parallel to the SSC and vote on legislative matters in the Union.

Sabbs – The Sabbatical Officers, Sabbs for short, are elected in the March elections diet. They are students who take a year out from their studies to work full-time with a salary for the Union, trying to make the Bop better, among other things. The five sabbatical positions are listed below.

Association President – Chloe Hill currently sits cross-legged in the biggest chair in the corridor of power. She sits on the University’s governing body, and is in charge of redevelopment (sort of), strategic planning within the Union, and the general representing student rights to the University: a responsibility of all the Sabbs. She also has a great range of natty jumpers and walks like Rihanna.

DoSDA –  Kelsey Gold co-ordinates the SSC (remember them?) in her role as Director of Student Development and Activities and runs Freshers Fayre. They’re a time-consuming bunch, but she also works with the University and Careers centre on issues like acknowledging extra-curricular activities.

DoRep – Teddy Woodhouse is the current incumbent, and he works primarily in areas such as accommodation, education, welfare and environment issues, as well as dealing with people like class reps, and the organisation of most elements of democracy. He sits next to Chloe on the University’s governing body. Their games of noughts and crosses are stuff of legend, and Teddy is best known for his bow-ties. Seriously. Check them out.

DoES or DoServ – Dan Palmer is the Director of Events and Services. He runs events…and services. Like the Bop…and Freshers’ Week. He pretty much has the best job in the world. Rumour has it he also runs around the building site juggling bowling pins after dark.

AU President – Jess Walker is the woman in charge of building a swimming pool, and expanding the gym. It’s a big job, but that’s what the Athletic Union President is paid to do. Of course, that’s not the only thing, but you get the idea. They also look after the paid interns with the AU employs.

SSCC – Student Staff Consultative Committee. (Trying saying that after a few Messybombs!) You know those emails you get from class reps, asking you whether the seats in Purdie are comfortable enough? Well, those class reps all get to go to SSCC with their School President, where they feedback your complaints to your teachers.

Of course, that’s not everything, (the number of acronyms around the University is estimated to be over 9,000) but it’ll get you through most of the important stuff. I hope.#saelect memeThis is loosely based on my original post on The Saint