A recent lack of applications for the JCR committee led some of its members to propose a motion to introduce “committee carrots”.
The motion stated that Corpus Christi is “almost unique in offering no tangible benefits to its committee members” and grants rewards to committee members including the termly funding of formal hall and the allocation of a “priority pass”, guaranteeing them a place at formal with up to two guests.
The motion also aims to add proportion to the types of punishment available to committee members, stating that the JCR will benefit “in being able to discipline errant Officers without removing them from their position.”
Harry Begg, Corpus JCR Vice-President, commented, “I see what we are providing as a service to other members of our community, and, although I would hate to see us as separate from the main body, people should be rewarded for that service.”
He added, “In other colleges, members of the executive get many more benefits compared to the limited changes introduced. I think more needs to be done to reinvigorate elections; We should never be in a situation where a position isn’t being contested by more than one person. This is a first step in changing that, and hopefully the next set of elections at the end of this term will be more of an exciting democratic event than the last.”
One Corpus student told Cherwell, “Giving the committee ‘perks of the job’ completely undermines the collegiate, inclusive JCR tradition we have tried to maintain, which allows all students to feel comfortable amongst peers when debating college life. On the other hand, of course, I will definitely be running in our next elections. Whether that’s good for democracy, I’m not so sure.”
However, one second year said, “I think it’s a bad idea to give people rewards for being on the committee. Whilst it has the obvious benefit of making more people more likely to sign up, it means some people will sign up for the rewards alone rather than because they actually care about what they’re doing.”
Another second year at New College told Cherwell, “Ultimately, you want a reward that makes the president’s life a bit easier, but not one that is so significant that it is a reason to go for the position in itself.”