An exclusive poll carried out by The University Observer has revealed that most students are unable to name any of the five Students’ Union sabbatical officers.
47 per cent of students surveyed were unable to name any of the five full-time officers. Just seven per cent of students interviewed were able to name all five of the officers, who are elected in high profile university-wide elections each March.
Only 39 per cent of students were able to correctly name the Students’ Union President as Gary Redmond, while 27 per cent of respondents could successfully name Mike Pat O’Donoghue as the Entertainments Vice-President.
35 per cent of students were able to name Scott Ahearn as the current Welfare Vice-President, while Paddy Ryan was identified by 24 per cent of students as the Campaigns & Communications Officer.
The Education Vice-President, Donnacha Ó Súilleabháin, scored lowest, being correctly named by just 16 per cent of the students surveyed.
Ó Súilleabháin also came last in a separate survey, where students were asked to identify the person being shown to them in an A4 photograph. The Education Vice-President was recognised by just 24 per cent of the student body.
Redmond was the most recognised, being successfully recognised by 68 per cent of the student body.
Ahearn was recognised by 51 per cent, while O’Donoghue and Ryan were correctly identified by 44 per cent and 33 per cent respectively.
The results will be a blow to Donnacha Ó Súilleabháin as he seeks election to the position of Education Officer with the Union of Students in Ireland (USI). Ahearn, however, will be buoyed by the news that his face is recognised by more than half of students surveyed as he seeks re-election to the position of Welfare Vice-President in next month’s elections. Redmond will also be pleased with his facial recognition as he seeks the USI presidency.
The poll will also offer food for thought for the seven other candidates who will run for election to the five positions at this year’s elections in two weeks’ time.
The University Observer invited all five sabbatical officers to comment on their statistics but each declined to offer any comment.
The poll was carried out by The University Observer last Thursday and Friday. Several hundred students were polled in each of the two surveys, which were carried out separately and surveyed separate pools of students. Respondents were split evenly between genders and represented programmes from all five UCD Colleges.