Sabbatical debates kicked off at 6.30pm this evening, beginning with the candidates running for the position of VP Education. 

Candidates taking part in the debate for VP Education:

  • David Heard
  • Shaun Coston
  • Thomas Rogers
  • Sophia D’Angelico



One hot topic in tonight’s debate was concerns about students using the library, including discussion around the 24 hour library, digitising core text books and space.

All candidates showed support for current VP Education, David Mendoza-Wolfson’s 24 hour library scheme. However, Sophia D’Angelico showed concern about the 24 hour trial promoting an unhealthy lifestyle and the safety issues of leaving the library in the early hours of the morning. She also suggested how money could, potentially, be better spent on digitising core text books, a point raised in her manifesto.

Utilising the space in the library was an issue raised by Shaun Coston, who proposes getting rid of the 4th floor gallery in the library and opening up the Murray Building to free up more work space.



Andreas Day asked about candidates stance on the strikes and if they were to continue. David Heard responded in saying that he was personally in support of the strike action but, that being said, deplores the tactics of the strikers for using students as a ‘bargaining chip’. Sophia  agreed with this, and suggested a need to canvas students and gauge support, then converse with lecturers. Thomas suggested a different approach in having a sit in outside the Vice Chancellor’s office.

Gabriella Discenza questioned how those paying £9,000 fees will get value for money. Sophia suggested reaching out to alumni to create a network that can provide current students with careers advice. Shaun questioned D’Angelico’s response as the focus of the question was about students getting value for money. Thomas raised a point from his manifesto: the MoneyBack scheme, when students can claim parts of their student fees back if they are unhappy with certain aspects of their degree.

Current VP Communities, Oli Coles, tweeted in the question: ‘If the candidates could make one more degree programme at the university, what would it be?’ The candidates responded with suggestions to focus on more integrated modules, such as the curriculum innovation programme, bringing back sports science and a degree focused around globalising and business.

The question of focus groups was then raised. Coston responded with the statement that students want more influence over their modules and SUSU and want to make a tangible difference.

Which VP Education candidate will you be voting for?

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Based on tonight’s debate, who is your favourite for the position? We’ll be releasing articles on the other six debates as they happen. SUSUtv and Surge are also providing live coverage of the debates.


More articles in SUSU Elections 2014
  1. SUSU Elections 2014 Candidates: The Full List
  2. VP Education Debate: Summary
  3. VP Engagement Debate: Summary
  4. Union President Candidate Withdraws from Elections
  5. VP Democracy & Creative Industries Debate: Summary
  6. VP Welfare Debate: Summary
  7. VP Communities Debate: Summary
  8. VP Sports Debate: Summary
  9. Union President Debate Liveblog 2014
  10. Second Union President Candidate Withdraws
  11. Elections Candidates Disadvantaged After Posters Arrive Late
  12. ‘Joke’ Elections Candidate Gets Serious
  13. A Quick Guide to Your VP Education Candidates
  14. A Quick Guide to Your VP Engagement Candidates
  15. VP Sports Development Candidate Withdraws
  16. A Quick Guide to Your VP Democracy and Creative Industries Candidates
  17. A Quick Guide to Your VP Sport Candidates
  18. Campaigning During SUSU Elections: The Guide
  19. A Quick Guide to Your VP Welfare Candidates
  20. Why Are You Reducing Me to a Sexual Object?: One Candidate’s Experience of Elections
  21. A Quick Guide to Your VP Student Communities Candidates
  22. A Quick Guide to Your Presidential Candidates
  23. Exit Polls: SUSU Elections 2014
  24. Nightline Officer Candidate Victim of Email Spoof
  25. Why Vote?
  26. Elections Night 2014 Liveblog
  27. Candidate Live Interviews 2014
  28. Elections 2014: Sabbatical Winners Interviews
  29. Candidates Announced For VP Student Communities By-Election
  30. Anjit Aulakh Elected as VP Student Communities

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