I’m back for my second year as your VP: Student Voice! Since the start of the new year (1st July), myself, the other sabbs and the Union as a whole have been incredibly busy. I’m sure it goes without saying by now, but 2020 has certainly been more than a little unusual for everyone.
The first hurdle was obvious yet disappointing: due to the realities of Covid-19, we (the Sabb team) first had to reevaluate our manifestos, both in the light of what is genuinely achievable this year and also what has become important due to the challenges covid poses to you, our students. I will be honest when I say this is a still ongoing process, as there is still a lot of uncertainty in the world. That said, the continued socio-economic inequality that has been brought to the forefront by the recent BLM protests, has driven the Union as a whole to critically reflect on who we are, what we stand for, and how we can improve. With an emphasis on inclusion, equality, and diversity the Union has undergone a significant overhaul to its democracy and governance - that should produce a better, fairer, and more inclusive Students’ Union that champions the voices of its membership.
This year more than ever before, student feedback is critically important to make sure your time at Brookes is as amazing as possible. I’ve been working with the amazing Student Voice Team at Brookes Union to make sure our team of student reps have all the support they need. There’s always room for another rep so if you haven’t signed up yet, do it do it do it! It’s a great experience, as well as a really vital role. This year, I've been working on introducing faculty reps to sit alongside our course reps.
We’ve been out and about as a (socially distanced) Sabb Team over the last few days filming some welcome videos. So keep an eye out for some clips of me pointing at various buildings in Oxford.
The first month has also involved a LOT of training: from the history of Students’ Unions to finance and social media, from how to be an effective SU trustee to the fundamentals of campaigning. I feel pretty prepared now for whatever this year will throw at us. I also had the privilege to attend the “Evolving Student Digital Engagement Conference” that discussed a host of important issues around contract cheating, building digital communities/ representation networks, and general informational stuff on Covid-19. I can’t wait to put some of that into action this year.
And finally I just wanted to give a shout out to our new CEO who I couldn’t rate any more highly. Thanks for all your support!
As anyone who knows me will agree, I love talking. So if you need a chat or advice, drop me a message. If you’ve got any questions about being a student rep, please ask away.