Tales of a Past Full-Time Officer – Luke Daly

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How did you become an SU Officer? What made you run? 

A ton of different things made me run in the end for the student leadership race. I actually lost my very first election, which was for ITBSU Clubs and Societies Officer (Pre-Merger), and it thought me valuable skills and over the year after. One of the driving forces was that I had a pretty rough time getting through college, from my financial background, moving up from Limerick, and then also learning supports available. I wanted to try impact that as best I could with regards to ensuring no other person went through what I went through, or at least without knowing of the supports that are available to them! So in 2018, I was elected Vice President for Welfare & Equality for ITBSU and stuck around through the merger as Campus (Deputy) President for Blanch, Education Officer & Welfare & Equality Coordinator for 2 years after that! I was never a class rep, I was president of the Colours LGBTQ+ Society for 3 years and that’s how I got the know how.  

What (transferable) skills did you learn as an Officer? 

I remember vividly saying in an Academic Council setting, that I learned so much more real life experience from my time within Societies and the Students’ Union than my course could ever teach me. Working with various personalities, personal growth, communications skills, leadership skills, being able to stand up for myself and my beliefs, public speaking the list is so endless. I always say that I moved up from Limerick with a suitcase and nothing else, no friends, no money, no confidence, and I left as a person completely different to who I was in the best way possible. 

What were your (best) experiences as an Officer? 

I have a few! First one is my lollipop moment, there was a student (who’s long gone and graduated from college now) who had financial difficulties, couldn’t pay their fees, family situation wasn’t great, and college was their only escape, we worked so hard to get their fees waived under extreme circumstances, and I didn’t see that person for a while, I thought things didn’t go to plan, so they dropped out, only for the next week the officer door to swing open, student there, in tears (me worried), and then gave me the biggest hug ever, fees waived! 🙌🏼 whenever times got tough that’s what I pulled from to keep it going. Inductions was always the best as well, shout out to my Social Care & ECCE inductions, ye were GAS. Oh… and a little thing called TUDSU 🤪 The first ever merger in Ireland! Probably have tp mention my stint in USI’s policy books also 😌 I’ve put about 30 motions & policies into their mandate books. I remember vividly somebody telling me Blanch was a joker college on the national foot, and I made it a mission to change that. Amsterdam & Berlin was AMAZING as well #InternationalMysteryTour and LASTLY WHO CAN FORGET TUDSU TAKING ON THE TAOISEACH 🤌🏼🤌🏼 

Do you have any advice for the people who consider running for a position? 

IF NOT YOU THEN WHO? If you’re going to wake up tomorrow morning and have regrets, then put your name down. There’s no such thing as winners and losers, there’s winners and lessons learned. It’s not all as glamour puss as we’d like to think it is, 95% of your work is policy, behind the scenes, but my good god it’s so worth it and if I had my time back again I’d do it all over again. I’ve made lifelong friends, incredible connections and I’m not sorry for a single bit of it. We represented, uplifted and defended. I now work in the National Second Level Students’ Union (ISSU), so you never know where you’ll end up! If you ever need advice hit me up on LinkedIn, or pop me a DM on Twitter where I do a yearly thread on running for elections; @TheDukeLuke 🥰 

All the very best,  

Luke  

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