Read our interview with Ms Morrice here.
Fay Morrice, a fourth-year English Literature student, is running unopposed for the position of director of student development and activities. At first glance she has a reasonable amount of prior experience. Her work over the last academic year as the SRC member for disabilities is notable, with successes in launching a St Andrews Access Group and an Inclusive Learning Policy. She describes this experience as having “offered great insight into the workings of the Students’ Association”, particularly by offering “the chance to work with other subcommittees of the Union”.
Ms Morrice also has experience as a social convenor for the Mermaids theatre group. This role saw her personally organise the sell-out Mermaids’ Christmas Ball of 2012.
Her concise manifesto highlights three main priorities: the furthering of student development, accessibility and the Union redevelopment.
Furthering of student development
Saying that she wants to “work to expand the Career Launch: Employability Conference”, Ms Morrice aims to improve employability schemes throughout the University. As the current DoSDA, Kelsey Gold, has been doing, working with both CAPOD and the Careers Centre will be fundamental to this.
Her proposals also include the broadening of training opportunities for societies. Such training would ideally involve “sessions catered to specific committee roles”. Various training schemes introduced this year have helped societies to improve their management and general cohesion; Ms Morrice must be clearer as to which specific roles would be offered training, as well as to who would provide such preparation.
Ms Morrice describes herself as somebody who “loves woolly bobble hats and the Fisher and Donaldson vending machine”. She clearly has no issue in terms of personability and seems highly approachable. Her manifesto is stylistically informal and an open door policy is commendable if not unusual.
Nevertheless, Ms Morrice’s aim to be “willing to help with all that comes [her] way” is overly ambitious and ambiguously phrased. She has yet to specify which areas of Association activity she regards as priorities. Moreover, she needs to state the means by which she proposes to be approachable. Ms Gold, the incumbent DoSDA, achieved this through communication via Facebook and the Students’ Association website, as well as weekly face-to-face meetings with societies and subcommittees.
If elected, Ms Morrice will be confronted with the task of finding alternative venues for society and subcommittee activity that would normally take place in the Union. She encouragingly promises to cooperate with the University and Union staff regarding the allocation of space.
Her aim to ensure that the redeveloped Union “works perfectly for every type of event” is broad, but not unrealistic. If she is successful, space offered by the Union will be a real asset to the intimate University community. She again needs to concretely suggest substitute venues for the duration of Union redevelopment, however.
A reliable and notable candidate, Ms Morrice clearly has the experience and enthusiasm to be a successful director of student development and activities – but despite its friendly, accessible tone, her manifesto is strikingly brief and ambiguous. This is perhaps understandable, given that she is running unopposed.
Though she would likely face problems regarding Union redevelopment and some of her proposals need more thought, Fay Morrice is a compelling nominee.