Manifesto analysis: Jeremy Hipps, candidate for AU president

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Photo: Maria Faciolince
Photo: Maria Faciolince
Photo: Maria Faciolince

Read our interview with Mr Hipps here.

As the tension in St Andrews surrounding the elections trumps anything that an episode of Scandal or The Thick of It could possibly muster, Jeremy Hipps’ manifesto plan for the Athletic Union comes under scrutiny.

A fourth-year psychology student who is the current president of the Badminton Club, something he has been involved in since first year, he cites a long involvement with sport at the beginning of his manifesto. He seems well-qualified, having held a number of positions within the Badminton Club.

In what seems a common theme during this election campaign, Mr Hipps says he would make the AU more accessible. Making his office at the Sports Centre a more welcoming place and having semesterly meetings with the committees of every sports club are part of his plan. One suspects that such a move will go down well with the committees of clubs, some of whom feel something of a disconnect with what goes on within the corridors of power at the Sports Centre.

Mr Hipps also wants to make the AU come across better; he seeks to improve the way the AU communicates with clubs and to make sure that its members know how decisions are taken. By planning to make training for committee members much more rigorous it seems as though Mr Hipps is campaigning on a card of making the AU a more transparent and less confusing organisation for clubs to deal with. While in the context of elections for the AU this seems a populist move, it is not one lacking in substance, and if his promises come true I suspect he would be providing part of a resolution for frustrated committees from several clubs.

There is a certain zeal in Mr Hipps’ manifesto that seem to give primacy to improving organisation not only within the AU but within clubs themselves. Improving participation, working with clubs to assist their specific needs and working with them to make sure they get the best out of the developments taking place at the Sports Centre are all stated objectives. If he gets his hands on the role, something which he states to be his “dream” in the closing section of his manifesto, Mr Hipps looks as though he will certainly be a very hands-on president indeed.

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