Liberation and Campaign Officer candidates share their personal experiences

We asked your Liberation and Campaign Officer candidates about themselves and their manifestos

Candidates for the 2024/25 Students’ Union have been announced, and with voting opening Tuesday 5th March, we interviewed your Liberation and Campaign Officer candidates.

All candidates were asked what their number one priority is, how their personal experiences have shaped their manifesto, and what sets them apart from their opponents.

You can read their manifestos here.

International Students’ Officer:

Ifaz Younus

via @eyefaz on Instagram.

Ifaz has served as the President of International Student Organisation, Senator of Student Government, and Chair of Infrastructure Committee at his previous university in the US. Amongst others, his goals include setting up social events for every cultural festival, increasing discounts for international students, and working towards language exchange programs. His number one priority is to create an environment that is welcoming of international students, “that represents international students and is welcoming of their diverse culture and beliefs.”

He says his personal experiences have shaped his manifesto:“I came to the UK last year hoping to see a students’ union… that is welcoming of International Students, that celebrates the culture, beliefs and international events. I was surprised when I found out that Lancaster was lacking all of this.”

Ifaz said that experience is what sets him apart from his opponents: “I come from a political family. I have been seeing my father represent and advocate for people… I have been in leadership, advocacy and representation roles since I was in grade 1 of school.”

Sara Raidah

Sara is the International Faith Officer for County JCR, alongside her roles as and engineering student ambassador and chemical engineering academic rep. Her number one priority is to create an international student society in where they can be supported with living costs, foo affordability, events and job opportunities.

She said, “I have always been that person who strives to learn, develop and grow though the problems and obstacles I face, always looking for opportunities to improve myself and challenges to build an even stronger version of myself.” She believes her “persistence, resilience and self-confidence” are what set apart from her opponents.

Khanak Mavan

via @khanak_for_iso on Instagram

Khanak is a fine art student and student ambassador. Her main aims are to bridge the gaps between international and home students, advocate policies and initiatives to enhance the university experience, and promote cross culture understanding.

She said, “We represent 2.4 per cent of all students in the university, which makes it important for our voices to be heard. I want to ensure that all of us have an enjoyable, enriching, and homely experience.”

Students with Disabilities Officer:

Em and Charley

Em and Charley are co-running for this role, stating “as disabled students ourselves, co-running will allow us to share the responsibilities without burning out.” Their main aims are to campaign for better access to lecture recordings and quality of captioning, encourage better maintenance and signposting of accessible and alternative routes, compile a list of resources and contacts to signpost students more effectively. Their top priority is improving accessibility and inclusivity of disabled life. “We know university life can be made all the more difficult when you’re disabled, and different disabilities will cause different obstacles and barriers.”

Their personal lived experiences of being disabled have shaped their manifesto, but they are aware that its crucial to be inclusive of every disability, “not just our own”.

“Between us we have lived experience of nearly every area of disability, and crucially how these different disabilities impact university life differently.

“We’re both well acquainted with the systems already in place for disabled students whilst also knowing what could be improved to increase inclusivity and accessibility across all departments and areas of university life.”

Voting opens Tuesday 5th March at 10am.