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What is a manifesto?

A manifesto is essentially a statement of what you’d like to achieve over the year if you are elected as an officer! It is a short document which sets out the issues you care about and what you would like to see changed. Importantly, it is a key way that you’ll communicate why you’re the best candidate to voters. Your manifesto should lay out what you care about and what students can expect of you if you win the election!

It is useful to know that your manifesto and campaign poster are two different things. The manifesto is purely text which you upload to the election site. Your plain text manifesto will be uploaded to the elections webpage alongside your photo and it will be included in the manifesto booklet. Your campaign poster can be colourful and designed and will often feature text pulled from your manifesto.

Why is it important?

A manifesto tells people why you want to represent them and why they should vote for you; it sets out your ideas and plans. Your manifesto needs to say why you think you would be a good elected representative and what you would do if elected. It will also be a source of accountability should you be elected. Students will be able to track your progress in your role against what you promised to do in your manifesto.

You’re required to submit a manifesto as part of the nomination process.

Please ensure your manifesto follows this format:

  • Who am I?
  • What do I want to do?
  • Why should you vote for me?
  • Slogan and/or hashtag

To upload your manifesto, visit the page you nominated on.

Getting started!

Introduce yourself: You need to think about why you are running in the election, and why you feel you are the best person for this position. Draft something to get you started, using the pointers below and just get words on paper. It doesn’t matter if your first draft is bad as you will have time to improve this. It is useful to get feedback from your friends, course-mates, and other students. You should constantly be asking for advice and feedback from students - after all, these are the people whose votes are you trying to win! You can also contact current officers and/or staff about specific ideas, to see what has already been done or what is currently going on at UEASU.

Use concise, straightforward language, and keep things brief: Your manifesto is your opportunity to tell your peers why they should vote for you. It should outline who you are, what you will use your role to achieve, and the changes you aim to bring to UEASU. Think about where your manifesto will be displayed: would you stop to read it while walking by or scrolling through Facebook? Don’t add in anymore detail than you’d be bothered to read as a voter yourself! Short, sharp and concise is best.

Do your research: Do the changes you pledge to make appeal to a diverse range of voters, or just your social circle?

Be realistic and precise: Your term in office will last for 1 year: are your manifesto pledges achievable in this timeframe? What practical steps will you take to achieve your goals?

Communicate your skills, experience, and personality: Show voters who you are! What roles have you held before? How does your previous experience make you the best candidate?

Proofread! Make sure your manifesto reads well and is free from spelling mistakes. Use the spellcheck function on Word, or better yet, ask a friend to proofread!

Keep the focus on you: You have a limited number of words; use them to promote yourself rather than discrediting other candidates.

Ensure your manifesto is portrait!

Think about students!

As a Union we are trying to engage with our HSC students more this year. Due to the nature of their courses, a lot of HSC students find themselves on placement, or studying away from campus for long periods of time, making engaging with our channels more difficult. When writing a manifesto, think about way to include your HSC peers! Here are some fact sheets about our HSC students that you may find useful!

Top Ten Tips

Manifestos are an important part of the election – in 2017, 33% of student voters said they voted for a candidate because they agreed with their manifesto (compared to 9% who voted for them because they spoke to them in person), so it matters a lot!

  1. Start with what you want to change
  2. Think SMART (are your goals: specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, time-bound?)
  3. Describe how students would benefit from your ideas
  4. Talk to current Officers and students when writing your manifesto
  5. Include something for everyone
  6. Use clear language and grammar. Spell-check your manifesto before submitting!
  7. Be creative – you want to stand out, not blend in
  8. Don’t get carried away or waffle to fill space
  9. It’s about you and your relevant experience - not your opponents
  10. Repeat your name and ask for their vote at the end

Examples of previous manifestos

Links and Resources

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