by Luke James
Cymru X Chair
Since I became involved in Cymru X in 2008 I have been in a handful of members of the Cymru X executive to stand in any students' union elections.
Last year at Swansea University I was encouraged by a Labour student to stand as a part time officer and was duly elected General Secretary.
I've also been successful in the National Union of Students' (NUS) UK conference delegates’ elections and last week was elected to serve as full time Education Officer for the next academic year.
But for the records I missed out in the NUS Wales delegates’ elections, so it wasn't all good times.
And I would stress that I have fought these elections, not as a Cymru X or Plaid Cymru candidate, but independently and with only our union members’ interests in mind.
But the point is, if it wasn't for the encouragement of a Labour student, who comes from an organisation where to fight for the top positions in every students' union is a minimum requirement, I might not have thought about standing.
If you ask me, for a youth movement of the second largest political party in the country with the talented people we have within our ranks, our record on contesting students’ union elections is embarrassing.
That’s why starting with this years students’ unions executive elections we will be encouraging our members to stand for positions in their unions, independently and to serve their members, but with the values and passion they bring to Plaid Cymru and with the support of Cymru X.
And to those people who dismiss student politics – students’ unions represent a huge amount of people and uphold the right to education amongst other things.
And from a Plaid perspective if you want to see a generation of trained and motivated activists ready to take on our opponents in the battle of ideas, door to door - then this is the place to start.