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USU elections: Candidates revealed

These are 2018's USU Board hopefuls.

Candidates attend a networking session at Courtyard. Photo: Janek Drevikovsky

Disclaimer: Honi Editors Lamya Rahman and Liam Donohoe are not involved in any decisions or contributions to USU Board Election coverage.

Ahead of tomorrow’s official announcement of USU Board candidates, Honi can reveal the nine students who will be vying for five coveted positions this Union Board election. There are five male-identifying candidates and four female-identifying candidates, listed here in alphabetical order: Maya Eswaran, Lachlan Finch, Daniel Lee, Mike Mao, Bec (Rebeccah) Miller, Decheng Sun, Connor Wherrett, Zimeng Ye and Chuchu (Janet) Yin.

Grassroots candidate and debater Maya Eswaran will be running on dark yellow (à la Switch) and attended today’s information session with senior Grassroots member Nina Dillon-Britton, who has election experience with Sin for Honi in 2016. Eswaran is a General Executive member of the SRC, running on the slogan “Go higher with Maya”.

Lachlan Finch, who was 2018 President of the Sydney Arts Students’ Society (SASS) before all executive members were removed due to an invalid election, will be running on the colour Black, likely mimicking the successful black and white tones of factional ally Jacob Masina’s 2017 campaign. The Libdepedent was accompanied to the information session by SRC Councillor Tim Seguna.

18-year-old and second year student, Daniel Lee will be running on the colour royal blue, and is yet to decide on his slogan. Lee is studying primary education.

Mike Mao, currently appearing on Facebook as ‘MagicMike Mao’, is an executive member of the USU’s inaugural International Revue and will be running on “dark grey to white” and declared that his slogan will be “Make Magic with Mike”. He attended the information session with manager Molly Riordan.

Labor-left (NLS) candidate Rebeccah Miller will be running on pink and was accompanied by manager Will Edwards, an SRC Councillor who also ran with Dillon-Britton as a member of the Sin ticket. Last year, Labor-left candidate Adam Torres ditched the traditional NLS colour of purple to go with bright pink. Miller, who is current SRC Welfare Officer, will likely be looking to replicate a successful trend.

Decheng Sun, a fourth year INGS/Law international student lists himself on Linkedin as a cofounder of a Consulting Group. Sun will be running on orange with the slogan “Decheng: A Fairer Union For All”.

Labor Right’s (Unity) Connor Wherrett will be running on sky blue with the slogan “Can’t Stop Connor”, ditching Labor’s traditional colour of red, despite its successful use in Claudia Gulbransen-Diaz’s campaign last year.

Zimeng Ye, who is a second year Business student, will be running on light green and has not yet chosen a slogan.

Second year commerce student Janet Yin is also an executive member of the International Revue along with Mao, and also serves as performance coordinator of MADSOC (Movement and Dance Society). Yin is running on white.

The USU’s affirmative action policy will see two candidates elected who are wom*n-identifying.

Today’s campaign briefing saw the nine candidates come together for the first time. The briefing itself, run by USU President Courtney Thompson, Electoral Officer Mona Jindi and Returning Officer Penny Crossley, saw one announcement that may distress long-time hacks: this year, in accordance with a University order that all A-frames must be weighed down with a 20 kg sandbag. The change is supposedly a safety measure, designed to prevent the painted plywood signs from blowing away in high winds.

For the purposes of the candidates’ spending cap, the sandbags will be costed within the nominal $10 chalked up for each A-frame. For the purposes of carrying heavy things down Eastern Avenue, however, the cost of the sandbags will be incalculably high.   

Voting will take place across campus between May 14 and May 16.