Engagement and unity were the main themes encompassed in all the speeches delivered by candidates at Tuesday night’s Postgraduate Hustings.
While four candidates of the eleven were unable to attend due to work commitments, the seven who attended all said they will fully back the elected candidates, emphasizing that all students running have the same goals and intend to work as a team with their peers.
“The reason we didn’t pick one candidate is to show we want engagement, by putting forward eleven people it shows that we all want to engage,” said candidate Paloma Ozores.
All eleven students running have the same campaign manager and were described by one candidate as a “political party”.
“We are like a party, we have the same views, but we also have the same goals,” said candidate Simon Creane. “It doesn’t matter who wins we just want our voices to be heard.”
Each speaker at the hustings focused their opening address on post-graduates’ dissatisfaction with on-campus accommodation regulations, including how the rooms are appointed, refurbished as well as issues with heating and water.
“Campus Residences refuses to communicate with postgraduates directly, but rather do all their business through the SU,” said candidate Peter Brennan.
“A postgrad student has to take care of their job first, we can’t control what campus residences do,” said candidate Giuseppe Avella. “It should be a service to help students, not a way to stress them out and get money out of students’ pockets.”
When asked about these issues in September, John Caffrey, the general manager of DCU Campus Residences said, “we engaged in numerous meetings and updates both with the Students’ Union on behalf of the Postgraduate residents as well as with the Postgraduate representatives themselves before any final decisions were made. At all times we took on board their views and opinions and did all we could to accommodate their wishes.”
All candidates also mentioned intentions to increase postgraduate student involvement in college life and the Students’ Union.
“We want to feel that we are a part of this Students Union, that we are the same, undergraduates and post graduates, we are connected,” said candidate Antonio Alarconmiguez.
“Postgraduates want to be included too, whatever you’re doing, hanging out, hiking, whatever, just include us,” said candidate Prashant Prashant, who stressed the importance of maintaining a healthy social life, especially while completing a stressful Master’s or P.h.D degree.
The candidates who could not attend include Julie Brueckner, Lana Camilli, Hassan Bhatti and Mohammad Hosseini.
Image Credit: Kyle Ewald