Salient: Victoria University Students' Paper. Vol. 25. No. 13. 1962
Studass — The Mechanics
Studass — The Mechanics
Each year in May, students at University go to the polling booths to elect the Executive President for that year. Polling for this election and for the elections for the rest of Exec in July is not very high, and one of the periodic complaints of Exec members at Vic is that it represents only about 30% of Vic's 3700 students.
This is unfortunate, for those members' elected are empowered by the Students' Association not only to administer student facilities and activities, but also to make important decisions about this administration. Each year before elections Salient publishes a campaign edition, detailing the candidates and any platforms they may have. This is an important way of helping the new student to make his choices, and to exercise his right to see that the people he wants to administer student affairs are elected.
After the new Exec, is elected, an A.G.M. is held when reports of the year's activities and expenditures are tabled by the outgoing. Aside from this meeting, the only other way a student may exercise direct influence in student government is through the S.G.M. —Special General Meeting—which this year became a powerful weapon at Vic. In the hands of students who wanted to see things changed. There must be fifty petitioners for an S.G.M.
Since this represents less than one per cent of the student body, it is obvious that a small, well-knit group could conceivably exert considerable control through the mechanism of the S.G.M.
Exec's five officers are responsible for the general administration of Exec, business. The President chairs Exec, meetings. The Secretary is responsible for Exec, minutes, correspondence and notices. The Treasurer tries to balance the Exec budget. Each holder of a portfolio chairs meetings of a subcommittee which deals with some particular aspect of student affairs.
The House Committee is responsible for the administration of the Student Union Building. Public Relations consists mainly of improving town-gown relations, but the committee is also attempting to create a liaison between the University and secondary schools.
The Publications Committee administers Salient, the University newspaper, Spike, a sporadic literary publication, and Cappicade, Vic's notorious 'humour' magazine. The Social Controller organizes dances and other social activities, and will be responsible next year for the Orientation Week. Sports land Cultural portfolios probably explain themselves. The two vice-presidents have functions which, in the words of one of them "are pretty difficult to define; but generally we act as general rouse-abouts". Jointly, they head the Education Subcommitee.
Our Students' Association is a constituent member of the N.Z.U.S.A., the national student body. The presidents of the six associations and several other delegates meet twice each year at Tournaments to co-ordinate student activities. N.Z.U.S.A., in association with the N.Z.U. Sports Union is responsible for the organization of these tournaments.
N.Z.U.S.A. sends delegates to overseas student conferences, and also responsible for Press Council, which as well as being a forum for student editors, has executives resident in Wellington which publishes an information bulletin for distribution overseas. N.Z.U .S.A. 'costs each student 2/7 out of his annual Association subscription.
Affiliated to the Students' Association are a wide range of clubs, each with their own standing orders and constitution. These clubs cover a wide range of student activities, from football to fencing, and from debating to drama. Any member of the Students Association may become a member of any of them.