By Hugo Harris
Megan Croll has been elected President of Durham Students’ Union (DSU) for the academic year 2017/18. The current St Cuthbert’s JCR President defeated Harry Cross in a final round by 1,874 to 1,709 votes.
In the other results, Sabrina Seel was elected Postgraduate Academic Officer, Charlie Walker Opportunities Officer, and Rosa Tallack Welfare and Liberation Officer. 4,207 voted out of a possible 20,219, marking an overall turnout was 20.8%.
According to DSU statistics, turnout was highest at St Chad’s, where 238 out of 611 eligible students (39.95%) voted. Other colleges with relatively high turnouts were St Cuthbert’s (37.35%), St Johns (37.03%), and Van Mildert (29.72%). Colleges with the lowest turnouts included Stephenson (7.36%), John Snow (7.72%), Ustinov (9.97%), Hatfield (11.54%) and Josephine Butler (15.82%).
Croll, whose manifesto had “Value for Money, Student Consultation and Common Room Support” as its three main themes, was not present at the result announcement in the Riverside Bar. Nevertheless, writing on her Facebook page after the event, she said: “I’m absolutely delighted to have been elected as Durham’s next Students’ Union President. I just want to say a huge thank you to everyone who voted and supported me throughout what was a tough couple of weeks. Also, very well done to the other candidates in all of the elections; there were so many strong campaigns. Particularly to Harry (Cross) who was tough competition but was so gracious”.
In response to his victory, Charlie Walker, Opportunities Officer-elect, said: “Really big thank you to my campaign team who worked so hard, my boyfriend Dom who has seen me through a number of emotional crises and to all my friends who have been here with me through this, thank you so much”.
Alice Dee, current DSU President, brought the announcement evening to a close: “I would just like to take the opportunity to thank everyone again for running in the election. Having run an election campaign myself, it was probably one of the most difficult things I’ve ever had to do. Everyone poured their absolute heart and soul into it, so well done!”
Photograph: Rob Hardyman