Davies’s prior experience on the Queen Margaret Union (QMU) Board of Management as Campaigns & Charities Convenor has certainly made her aware of the union’s inner-workings and the problems it faces and her campaign reflects this knowledge.
While Davies’s manifesto is light on the details, it is clear that these are not simply meaningless statements, but actually have solid ideas behind them. A major focus of her campaign rests on improving the general services that the union provides for members and non-members alike, such as updating the cafe and bar till systems. Whilst improving the efficiency of these services is a good idea and a realistically achievable one (a rarely encountered phrase amongst student elections), it is perhaps too simplistic and is unlikely to draw in significant revenue for the union.
When questioned on the idea, Davies admitted that the quality of services was only one of the numerous issues contributing to the union’s financial woes. However, Davies stood by her goal and believes that the union must focus on the changing needs of its membership, stating that “students want things to be fast and easy, and if we’re trying to meet those needs we need to look at improvements like the till system.” Whether these goals are remarkable and revolutionary enough the bring the QMU back into financial stability is questionable.
Davies emphasises that “it is first and foremost about our membership”, and many of her other plans focus on improving the benefits of being a member. While plans to provide committee members with more opportunities to gain additional skills are interesting ideas, Davies’s desire to focus on an insular and dwindling membership instead of enticing and engaging with the wider student body is perhaps problematic. However, Davies has put forward plans to offer incentives for clubs and societies to become affiliated and has previously demonstrated her capabilities as Convenor.
Overall, Davies does not offer any radical new ideas or risky policies and instead wants to broadly improve processes already in place: small; realistic; and beneficial changes. She may not have the most imaginative solutions, but remains a competent Presidential candidate. The biggest question mark over her campaign is: will it be enough?