Thank you to all student leaders who attended and contributed to the discussions in the most recent Student Council meeting on the 11th May. For those of you who were unable to attend or wish to refer back, please find a summary of the meeting below.
Updates from the SU
CEO Rebecca Hobbs gave two important updates on behalf of the Students' Union.
In this final Student Council meeting, Rebecca looked back over the academic year in celebration of everything that has been achieved by staff and students. The SU has made good progress over the year on many projects including: the continued efforts of the sabbatical team in lobbying for the changes students wanted to see; running of campaigns from #NeverOk to Earn Your Degree; selling over 32,000 tickets to events at Seventy7 and the loft; and the continued involvement of students in the 139 societies available to join across the university.
Rebecca looks forward to introducing the newly elected 2022-2023 Officer team, who will be working in their roles from June/July 2022. In the next academic year, the SU will be welcoming back Rhiannon Ellis into the role of President; Saj into the role of Vice President Activities; Osama Siddiqi into the role of Vice President Community; and finally, Aman Tripathi into the role on Vice President Education.
Firstly, Prosasti Ganguly your Vice President Community gave updates on her manifesto points.
Since her last Student Council meeting, Prosasti has been successful in lobbing for more buses to run along the Luton bus route. Although more buses are still required to carry the number of students who use the Luton route to and from campus, this has been a step the right direction to help commuting students. Prosasti will continue to lobby for further buses to run on this route.
Additionally, Prosasti has played a pivotal role in securing the building of a bus shelter at the Todd Building, which will hopefully be fixed by the end of May. As per student feedback, this is a great success for students.
Earlier this month, Prosasti had the pleasure of hosting the Student Union Awards alongside your President, Rhiannon Ellis, and sends her congratulations out to those who were nominated and won awards.
Secondly, Rhiannon Ellis your President presented her updates on the work she has completed since the last Student Council.
Rhiannon has worked hard to secure research results to support the #NeverOk campaign and wishes to launch university wide mandatory consent training, conducting two consent awareness surveys to better understand the student populations understanding of sexual misconduct.
In addition, the University has now signed the pledge in which they are proposing that NDA’s will not be used in cases of sexual misconduct, which Rhiannon hopes will inspire more faith in the University from students.
Since the last meeting she has also hosted two Sexual Health Awareness and Guidance fairs on College Lane and De Havilland, attended by many charities who gave away lots of freebies! Rhiannon is excited to host more events following freshers to further engage students in discussions around sexual health.
Finally, Rhiannon updated on the success of the first active bystander awareness training session which took place on the 28th of March, and next year these sessions will make up a mandatory part of the Student Leadership Development Programme.
Updates from Mairi Watson, Pro-Vice Chancellor Education and Student Experience
For the final Student Council meeting, Mairi Watson was invited to give updates on her work over the past academic year.
Mairi regularly meets with the Elected Officers to garner student feedback, and student leaders themselves at Pro-Vice Chancellor (PVC) meetings. These interactions are key in shaping the way in which the academic interests of students will be served moving forward.
In turn, Mairi highlighted the importance of student's interactions with surveys such as the National Student Survey (NSS) and Student Voice Questionnaires (SVQ), and that answering honestly and with as much detail is key to equipping staff with the information needed to make meaningful changes.
The university have also signed up to the Student Future Commitment, and between the SU and the University a Student Futures Manifesto will be written. This highlights a key change moving forward: the University and SU are prioritising supporting students to make sure they can excel after university.
Lots of efforts are being put into making sure the start of next term is the best that it can be. Alongside other staff, such as Rebecca Hobbs, Mairi is working hard to make sure the induction period prepares students for the upcoming academic year, whilst also placing a lot of importance in building community among students in those first few weeks.
Student Council Wrap Up
All staff in attendance send out a massive thank you to fellow staff and students for their continued involvement throughout the last academic year. All the valuable feedback provided has pushed the Students Union and University to secure positive changes in the student experience.
Thank you to everyone who attended this year's final Student Council. We hope students have a great summer, and we look forward to welcoming our newly elected and appointed student leaders to the first Student Council of the upcoming academic year which will take place in October 2022.