Union President candidate Morgan “Mo” Wilson took centre stage, as he slammed the Union and the university for “lack of action” over the suspended 13 at the annual election hustings.
In his opening speech, he said: “I’m not a status quo candidate – I’m one of the 13 students who were suspended for occupying the management building.
“The Union has failed to support us efficiently. I’m a candidate for change.”
Union President Chloe Whyte responded after the hustings, saying: “As always, the Students’ Union offers its full advocacy and support to all students.”
“We have offered support to the suspended 13. It’s their decision whether or not to accept the support we have offered them.”
Mo’s only opponent, current Vice President Education Amy Smith, also spoke of supporting student activism, as someone who has been heavily involved in the Stirling Extinction Rebellion movement.
She also said: “I want the Union to be leaders on climate change, run a better buses campaign, and have lots of student engagement in delivering the mental health strategy.
Mo added that he has “no shame” in being on the left, and that, if elected, he would “make a concrete base at which activists can be defended against university management.”
Sports President candidates Edd Keeler and Craig Stephen received questions on a range of issues, from mental health in sport to accessibility and inclusion.
Craig spoke of his experience holding part-time positions within the Sports Union, while Edd spoke of how he aims to increase funding for mental health training.
Both candidates voiced their passion for increasing disability inclusion and breaking down the barriers for LGBTQ+ participation in sport.
Vice President Communities candidates Josh Muirhead and Jess Reid faced questions on issues from media freedom to housing and sustainability.
Josh said: “Student media and journalism students should feel empowered.
“The media societies should be encouraged to work in conditions close to a newsroom environment, to prepare them for life after university.”
Jess Reid said: I believe that our media societies are a voice, and they should be free to publish what they want, according to what they see and hear from the students that they represent.”
“Removing caps will make student media societies speak for us.”
Uncontested VP Education candidate Lexi, and Sustainability Officer candidates Matthew Morrison and Lily Climie also spoke about their manifestos.
Brig will be releasing in-depth interviews over the next few days with the sabbatical and part-time officer candidates.