After a very long final session of Guild Council, in the immortal words of Fabian, I’ll try to keep this brief…
Each of the officers made a leaving speech looking back on the year and offering advice to the new team. These are some of the highlights.
VPSAD Emma “pacman” Packham has effectively showcased student groups to the Uni administration (the Vice Chancellor’s dad nows wants to join BUDS dance soc) and worked hard to make herself known and approachable. She said that despite the Guild’s under resourcing, few staff and erstwhile joke status among the students it achieves incredible things. She made the point that professional relationships are crucial; and gratitude and banter are useful to grease the cogs.
VPEA Brigid “remarkable” Jones: widely regarded as a model representative of students due to her commitment and dedication she was yesterday awarded honorary life membership of the Guild. Fabian asserted that this “girl, sorry, woman” has been patronised by the bigwigs up at the Uni during her massive campaign against the closure of the sociology department.
VPHC Ed “the smallest man that I look up to” Sparkes has worked hard to calm the housing terrors among first years by making everyone feel included in halls and pushing back the housing rush til after Christmas. He thinks that fun is the most important element in life, and that we should all change something if we’re not having enough of it, and to that end he’s run for nearly every position possible within the Guild.
VPW Johnny “idiotic but popular” Davis is the first ever re-elected officer, he’s determined, innovative to the point of requesting a condom cannon and a penis-shaped bucking bronco for AIDS awareness, and wants to encourage anyone who doesn’t think they’re “political” enough to get involved anyway, because all you really need is the desire to make things better. He’s proud of U of B’s record of supporting student parents, the “hidden gems” of our community, and is excited about carrying on next year, reminding us all to protect our welfare with a Johnny.
VPS Katie “fordy fail” Ford had a hard time splitting commitments and was initially a guild outsider, but has managed to conquer the laddish element of the Sports teams with tact and skill and embed the Guild in the minds of our sportspeople. The Lion sports pull-out in RedBrick, a successful healthy living campaign, a brilliant Sports Ball, increased involvement in Sports Forums and inclusion of Sports RAs are just some of her many achievements.
VPDR Tom “comrade” Guise has come a long way but never forgotten his BULS roots, wearing a rose on his lanyard at all times. He’s delivered Joe’s Bar, not on time but on budget, and been a supportive friend to the rest of the team. He also had a serious message of support for everyone involved in student politics and a warning for the naysayers who ignore the historic importance of our institutions.
President Fabian “that geeky Austrian guy” Neuner has managed to develop from an inexperienced cynical outsider into a positive, passionate, diplomatic, reliable and genuine leader. Following a jibe from Lynne Jones he’s been spending a lot of time convincing outsiders that students do care about politics, has been active in the Vote4Students campaign and wishes to further reform the Guild Council procedure to improve transparency. Among his many other achievements he recently won a game of Lash of the Titans, wearing Johnny Davis’ underwear on his head in victory.
The motion to express GC support for wheelchair ramps in the law library was passed unanimously, which is apparently a first!
Everyone decried the lack of recognition given to the non-sabb team and then carried on ignoring them…shout outs and praise were given to the guild staff, housemates and girlfriends, Carnival Rag, RedBrick, the notorious Ed Bauer, Tom Marley and Wes Streeting as well as all of the new officers…there used to be an official bar crawl called “Chamberlain Chunderfest”… that once you’ve been elected you have to do your best both for those who elected you but also for your rivals…the library WILL be open longer next year…Ed Sparkes is the best person to bring you tea when you’ve fallen asleep on your desk…