Chapman was elected Rector of the University of Aberdeen in 2014 with strong support from Green-aligned students.

Maggie Chapman, who is re-standing for Scottish Green Party Co-convener, has today suggested that the party should employ a permanent staff member for the Scottish Young Greens.

Writing in the Scottish paper The National, she argued that the party could become Scotland’s official opposition in the Holyrood elections after next, expected to happen in 2021.

The Green Party of England and Wales recruited a dedicated staff member for the Young Greens in 2006 when they had fewer members and less money than the Scottish Greens have now.

Speaking to Bright Green, Chapman said:

“The Scottish Young Greens make up a quarter of our party, and our growth as a party will depend on investing properly in them.

“What the Green Party of England and Wales found was that employing someone ensured member retention and growth, which meant it went a long way to paying for itself.

“More importantly, having someone paid to work on the role helped ensure Young Greens stayed involved, and this was instrumental in building the party to the point where their membership surge was possible.

“We’re a democratic party, so if I’m re-elected, I couldn’t just appoint a staff member without agreement from colleagues. But I’ll certainly do what I can to make it happen, including helping to fundraise for the post, and arguing for dedicated resource.”

Sam Coates who is former co-chair of the England and Wales Young Greens and a Green county councillor in Oxfordshire, said:

“The decision to pursue a paid worker for the England and Wales Young Greens was essential in building the organisation year on year, allowed us to provide better support for local branches and dramatically boost fundraising.

“The executive being free from administration and free to take the long view allowed us to follow a strategy that’s got us to where we are today. Maggie knows doing the same in Scotland is essential to make SYGs a formidable campaigning force.”

The election of the post of “Female Co-convenor” has generated unprecedented interest since Glasgow’s Zara Kitson entered the race last week.  Today she outline her vision for the Scottish Greens, also in the National.