The results for the Michaelmas Term elections were announced by the LSE Student Union (LSESU) as reading week began. After receiving almost 8600 votes for 11 different positions, the LSESU celebrates the results as “one of the most exciting Michaelmas elections in LSESU history” on their Facebook page. However, this statement has been met with scepticism following a record low hustings turnout, and what many have considered to be poor advertising from the LSESU.
Although there were almost 8600 votes cast, these actually came from a total of 1883 students (according to the LSESU election statistics), representing just under 20% of the student population. Of these, nine-hundred and eighty were undergraduates, eight-hundred and ninety-eight were postgraduate or research students. The most highly represented Departments were, the Department of Government and the Department of Law, with 220 and 201 student voters respectively.
The low turnout was compounded by the confusion of running Student Union and Hall Committee elections simultaneously, according to candidate Jeremy Burey-Abraham. Last year Jeremy served as President of the Bankside House Committee, and has been elected this year as Bankside’s International Student Representative as well as the Student Union’s Academic Board Member, and NUS Representative.
Reflecting on the process compared to last year, he stated that “a lot of freshers failed to understand the difference between the processes [of the Hall Committee and Student Union Elections]”, which caused “voter fatigue and confusion”. Similarly to the Student Union elections, the turnout for the Bankside House hustings was also “disappointingly low”, according to Jeremy only about 12 people attended.
Fifty candidates ran for eleven separate posts in the Michaelmas Term elections. Fifteen candidates were elected to seventeen different positions.