FTO Interview: Rhiannon Jones – President

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In the first round of voting, Rhiannon Llystyn Jones was elected as LUSU President. Rhiannon Jones received 1,177 votes, Ashley Threadgold received 639, Adam Gardner received 196, and Re-open Nominations received 104.

Photograph: Ian Meeks
Photograph: Ian Meeks

How do you feel campaigning went this year?
I feel that campaigning this year was very clean, and I feel that the candidates had a lot of respect for each other which was good to see. Compared to last year, I don’t think campaigning was quite so competitive, and it wasn’t as intense as in previous years. I really enjoyed having the opportunity to visit lots of different societies and sports clubs, allowing me to find out what everyone’s real issues are, and consider how I can tackle them.

How did you feel after being elected?
It still hasn’t really sunk in, and I can’t really describe it in words. The feeling is surreal, and you don’t really feel like you’ve been elected – almost as if you’re dreaming. I was shaking so much whilst sitting in Barker House Farm and waiting for the result, and the atmosphere after the results were announced was truly amazing.

How do you feel about working with the incoming Full Time Officer team?
I feel excited to be working with the incoming Full Time Officer team, as everyone was elected into their respective positions for a reason, and we are all working towards the same goal of representing students and enriching the student experience. I’m also intrigued to see how the dynamics of the group will work, especially in particularly controversial or high-risk situations.

What is your main priority for the upcoming year?
My main priority for the upcoming year is, of course, to ensure that each of my manifesto points are being met. The long-term goal is to reach a level where students feel like the Students’ Union is working for them, and their voice feels adequately represented by the team. I would like to get involved with a whole range of different societies and sports clubs, and really get out there to meet as many people as possible. I want to immerse myself in student life to truly understand the issues or concerns that students have.

Any final words to the electorate?
Ever since I joined the University, representing students is one of the things that has made me happiest. Running for the position of LUSU President is something that I wanted to do ever since being elected as President of The County College, and I hope that I can utilise my time over the next year to truly make a difference in the Union. I’d like to thank everyone who voted in the elections – even if it wasn’t for me. Voting in the LUSU elections is just one of the many ways in which you can make your voice heard on campus, and regardless of who you voted for, engaging with the democratic process is so vitally important. Thank you!