The UGLY truth about NIG. University ELECTIONS (BSU as a case study, the 3rd reason happens all the time)
As a students’ union officer you’ll have the chance to represent your peers and bring about the changes you’d like to see. Discover how standing in student elections can also boost your career.
Participating in an extra-curricular activity while at university has substantial career benefits; yet graduate employers often look for something more. Assuming a more active role within the students’ union, or it’s numerous societies and sports clubs, is a good idea.
There are many elected roles available, with some requiring greater involvement than others. While societies and sports clubs host voluntary elected positions to run alongside your studies, the students’ union offers numerous paid, full-time sabbatical roles – such as president, vice-president, education officer and welfare officer- that can be held for one or two semesters.
Before i continue i want you to know that there is always a good and a bad side of things like the saying goes “there are two sides of a coin”
The Advantages of holding an office in the university are vast let me mention a few to you before heading to the main point of the article.
- First and foremost, elected students have the ability to drive change. By leading campaigns or organising events, you can steer the direction of your society, sports club or wider university, and advance the causes that you and your peers believe in.
- Involvement extends to wider university matters for those in more senior roles. Sabbatical officers sit on major committees with the vice-chancellor and the senior team – providing an invaluable insight into the higher education sector. You really get to understand what the university does and see how it works from the inside.
- Taking a more active role also allows you to interact with students from a range of different backgrounds and this can result in strong, long-lasting friendships. You’ll meet people from every course, and from different cultures. You’ll work with a diverse range of people, including academics, university senior management, university staff, union staff, the wider community and importantly, the eclectic make-up of students.
- Perhaps the biggest advantage of becoming involved in your students’ union is boosting your employability. The experience you’ll gain will look great on your CV and you’ll be able to use relevant examples from your time in office to back up skills in your cover letter and at interview. Tasks such as managing budgets and running effective meetings develop qualities that are highly desired by employers, such as drive, leadership, influencing, multitasking, organising, communication and negotiating. Having to make decisions that may be unpopular with your peers also enhances resilience.
- Becoming an SU officer provides you with a unique opportunity to lead a huge organisation early in your career,
‘Far from putting your graduate career on hold, becoming an officer can actually accelerate it. Your CV becomes chunkier and you gather impressive references.
All this advantages mentioned above are quite good reasons to pick a form and apply for a post in the SUG elections but then, every story has different sides to it.
The Main Article citing BSU as a case study.
There are, however, some drawbacks; most notably the fact that increased involvement results in increased time pressures. For the more demanding roles particularly, you must be willing to sacrifice much of your time, which may impact upon your studies or social life.
- Everyone wants a bit of you. You’ll spend one day chatting to students and drinking coke and doughnut at a student conference and the next you’ll be in a senior meeting approving thousands of naira projects. The next day you’ll be hosting an awards evening to celebrate student success. You’ll never get flexibility like it in any other role.
- the responsibility can sometimes weigh heavy. ‘Being an officer can be very draining at times, considering that you are accountable to the entire student body and at times you’ll have to make decisions that will long out-last you. The role comes with a lot of expectations and you can’t please everyone.
- Winning roles in a major position in the SUG elections today has been redefined, if you don’t belong to some society or you don’t have backing from some society leaders it will be highly unlikely that you win the position you applied for. if you feel you are capable enough to win without backing then you may be attacked and threatened by unknown people which may lead to you ultimately giving up on the position you applied for well, it happened to someone that i know which i will explain later on in this article.
- The new e-voting system lacks adequate orientation and it would cause a lot of issues because, the system is new and from statistics 65% of people prefer practical examples than just an explanation of what they haven’t used or tried before. This could lead to an inadequate amount of voters because, only the quick and fast thinkers will understand it. Moreover, most of the students don’t open their mails and are not internet savvy they mostly understand social media platforms.
The story i promised earlier was about a student who applied for the post of a departmental senator, he was kidnapped before the day to the election but was later realized.
Well for different elections i have experienced in this story there have been a story attached to it let’s watch out and see how this one turns out.
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