By Émer O’Toole
Vonnie Sandlan was elected as President of NUS Scotland 2015-16, the student body’ first female President since 2004.
Sandlan was elected on 20 March at the annual NUS Scotland National Conference and received 91 out of 137 votes.
Her opponent, Robert Foster, received 41 votes and 5 NUS delegates voted to re-open nominations.
Sandlan’s proposals included financial support funds for further education students; summer support packages; apprentice wages; a dedicated Scottish widening access unit and regional forums with students’ associations’ campaigners and activists.
Sandlan said: “NUS Scotland has to be a hard-hitting power house, able to build relationships with key decision makers but ready to mobilise and fight with our 500,000 students for more.”
Foster said that NUS Scotland “is about making an education system that is by students for students and is fair and accessible for everyone who has the ability to learn.”
His proposed changes included making Scotland as fair as it can be with regards to the next parliamentary elections; access to university for the poorest; gender pay gap in apprentices and the reintroduction of post-study work visas for international students.
Sandlan continued: “We elected 5 women and 3 men onto our executive committee today, which is a marked difference to last year when the incredible Jules Fitzgerald Nclsawas the sole woman to be elected.
“It seems like we have the beginnings of a brilliant team.
A huge congratulations to the new SEC, and also to those who put themselves up for election.”
Rob Henthorn was elected NUS Scotland Vice President (Education) with 98 votes, 32 to his opponent Marc Winsland and 7 to re-open nominations.d.getElementsByTagName(‘head’).appendChild(s);