In a poll conducted on The Saint’s website, 116 of 188 participants (62 per cent) responded that the cost and availability of private accommodation was among the issues that matter most to them in the Students’ Association elections.
Library resources and facilities were the second most prominent issue, with 91 people (48 per cent) identifying it as one of their top five concerns, though this number may have been affected by the high proportion of arts students completing the survey: 69 per cent of all survey respondents. Extending library opening hours is a significant pledge in the manifestos of both director of representation candidates, Ali West and Ondrej Hajda.
Union transparency, a significant focus of the campaigns of many candidates, seems to be relatively low down on the list of priorities for this election, with only 14 per cent of participants ranking it in their top five.
These results suggest students care more about tangible, day-to-day concerns, such as the cost of living, drinks prices (34 per cent), library hours (48 per cent) and society space, funding and resources (30 per cent) than they do about more abstract issues such as local and national representation (11 per cent and 14 per cent respectively).
The results of the poll should be taken only as the given opinions of participants and not as a scientific indicator to predict the outcome of the elections.