TCDSU opens nominations for sabbatical roles

Candidates have until Friday January 24 to submit their nomination forms

Trinity College Dublin Students’ Union (TCDSU) has opened nominations from students who wish to run for election for one of the union’s six sabbatical officer positions. 

The six sabbatical officer positions within the union, which are all elected on an annual basis, are President, Education Officer, Welfare Officer, Communications and Marketing Officer, Entertainments (Ents) Officer, and Editor of the University Times.

The President is the union’s Chief Operating Officer and is also responsible for any campaigns run by the union. The Education Officer provides students with support for any academic issues they may face, while the Welfare Officer role is intended to provide support for students experiencing “mental, emotional or physical” distress. The Communications and Marketing Officer is responsible for the unions public relations as well as organising sponsorship deals. The Ents Officer organises events for students, including the annual Trinity Ball. The Editor of The University Times runs the union-funded newspaper.

Nominations for these positions will remain open until 5pm on January 24. Following the close of nominations all candidates will be announced outside House 6. Candidates must secure the signatures of at least 10 other students in order to successfully make it onto the ballot paper.

The announcement of candidates will be followed by a briefing for all candidates and their campaign managers on the rules of campaigning. The campaign will take place over the course of just under two weeks, during which candidates will canvas students for their votes, usually through a combination of posters, flyering and social media. Candidates are permitted to spend up to €200 on their campaign, plus an additional €80 on a “stunt”.  

The campaign period will run from Monday February 17 to Thursday February 27.   

The union’s sabbatical officers are elected by a vote open to all Trinity students. In a race where more than two candidates are standing, students will be able to rank candidates in order of preference. Students will also have the ability to vote for a “none of the above” option and vote to reopen nominations for a particular position.  

Currently, all sabbatical officers in the union receive a salary and on-campus accommodation, which amounts to a combined cost of €25,000 per officer. However, following a referendum held last April to reduce the union’s expenditure, the Ents Officer elected for the 2020/21 academic year will serve a reduced term of only nine months, rather than the full year. 

During last year’s elections, which produced the union’s current sabbatical team, three of the six potions positions, Communications and Marketing Officer, Welfare Officer, and Editor of the University Times, were only contested by one candidate each.

Nomination forms can be collected from the front office in House 6.

Finn Purdy

Finn Purdy is the current Deputy Editor of Trinity News. He is a Junior Sophister English Studies student, and a former News Editor and Assistant News Editor.