Here are some of the things we've accomplished recently:

WiFi at Wheatley fixed!

WiFi at Wheatley fixed!

A problem with WiFI at Wheatley was brought to our attention in a Rep Forum by a TDE student Rep. We’re pleased to say that the WiFi in F102 on Wheatley Campus is now fixed!

Brought back reps forums

Brought back reps forums

We’ve brought back Reps Forums to help make sure your voice is heard. These forums are a chance for your Reps to feedback on issues that you are facing across the university. We then feed these issues back to the people who make the decisions at Brookes.

Marked World Mental Health Day

Marked World Mental Health Day

To mark World Mental Health Day, we put on a series of events, including a free yoga session with Yoga Quota and a house plant sale. We went on a roadshow to the campuses to talk to students about mental health. We finished the week with a WellFair in Union Square on Thu 10 Oct (World Mental Health Day), where local charities and health providers came in and spoke to students about what help there is for mental health. Plus we had several visits from Pets as Therapy during the week!

Chloe, Sally and everyone in our Swindon Students Association have raised just under £500 as part of their World Mental Health Day event!

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Raising money for Movember

Raising money for Movember

Our Raise and Give President, Niamh, is working to encourage everyone at Brookes to get involved with Movember and raise as much money as possible for charity.

Dogs at Harcourt

Dogs at Harcourt

You told us you wanted therapy dogs at Harcourt Hill Campus. We brought two Pets as Therapy dogs with us to campus as part of our World Mental Health Day roadshow.

More mental health support in sport

More mental health support in sport

Daisy (VP: Wellbeing) and Harry (President) have been working with Brookes Sport and the Uni’s Wellbeing team to deliver wellbeing training for Welfare Officers in sports teams. These Welfare Officers will champion mental health and wellbeing within their teams, as well as sports as a whole at Brookes.

Places to charge devices

Places to charge devices

You told us you couldn’t find a plug on campus to charge up your phones/tablets/laptops, so we’ve worked with the IT Table company to install charging tables on campus. You’ll find these in Union Square and Union Bar currently.

Social space at Harcourt

Social space at Harcourt

We asked you what you wanted from Westminster Square and you said social learning space. During the summer of 2019 we redecorated the space to make it more welcoming and installed new furniture. You’ll find table tennis, pool and board games to keep you occupied, as well as a book nook and lots of space to study. We’re also hosting a fortnightly quiz in the space as part of our Brookes Union Explores series of events.

Non-Alcoholic Events

Non-Alcoholic Events

Matt, VP: Student Activities and Employability, has put together a series of events that don’t centre around alcohol called Brookes Union Explores. This includes a weekly Sunday cinema and a quiz every Tuesday.

You can see the full events line-up at: https://www.brookesunion.org.uk/explores

Organised mental health training for society committees

Organised mental health training for society committees

We organised mental health awareness training for our society committee members in order to ensure they have the tools to support their student members, and know where to signpost them to if they need extra support.

Celebrated LGBT History Month

Celebrated LGBT History Month

We celebrated LGBTQ+ History Month with a range of events, including a student and staff support stall and a talk with the CEO of Mermaids UK, which was co-hosted with two of our societies. We also had a full house for the DragProv Revue.

Hot water and microwave in JHBB

Hot water and microwave in JHBB

We now have a microwave and hot water dispenser in Union Square in the JHBB. This means you have hot meals and drinks from home, without needing to spend lots of money on campus.

Wildflower meadows

Wildflower meadows

We worked with the University’s Sustainability Team and our Wildlife Society to give you the chance to plant some wildflower meadows to promote biodiversity.

One World Week

One World Week

We hosted another successful One World Week. One World Week is a celebration of the cultural diversity of Oxford Brookes, with a range of events hosted by staff and students. Over 600 of you came to the free International Lunch, for the chance to sample food from around the world.

Stress Less Week

Stress Less Week

We hosted a series of stress busting events in the run up to exams that gave you the opportunity to take some time out.

Over £600,000 won for students

Over £600,000 won for students

Since July, our Advice Service has won back over £600,000 for students. This could be in recovered deposits, compensation, benefits entitlements, or additional finance or funding.

Improved lighting on campus

Improved lighting on campus

We lobbied to introduce better lighting onto the Headington Hill site, as the building works around the Helena Kennedy Centre had left the area feeling dark and unsafe. The University quickly installed lighting on routes across the site and to the Sports Centre.

Fully digitised mitigating circumstances

Fully digitised mitigating circumstances

You told us that the mitigating circumstances system was difficult to use and understand. We lobbied for you, and the new mitigating circumstances will be fully digitised.

Secured shuttle bus to Wheatley

Secured shuttle bus to Wheatley

Following the decision to remove the U5x bus that serves Wheatley campus, the officer team lobbied the University and successfully secured a shuttle bus service. This means that students can get to campus quickly and easily for their early lectures.

Negotiated compensation for halls issue

Negotiated compensation for halls issue

The officer team negotiated compensation for students who were affected by a gas leak in Clive Booth Student Village. They also helped deliver care packages to the halls whilst work took place to fix the leak.

View lecture materials beforehand

View lecture materials beforehand

You told us, via reps, that you wanted to see lecture materials before the lecture. We worked with the University to make materials available 24 hours before lectures.

New reporting tool for hate crime, sexual violence and harassment

New reporting tool for hate crime, sexual violence and harassment

Our Women’s Officer and Welfare Officer have been working with staff from across the University to create a new reporting tool for incidents of sexual violence, harassment and hate crime. This new tool allows students to report incidents, either anonymously , or with their contact details. All students will then be directed to sources of support, and students who have chosen to submit using their contact details will be contacted by a member of the Student Welfare.

The tool is really important in helping the University build a better picture of what is happening. The data gathered from this tool will enable the University to target its proactive work on tackling sexual violence, hate crime and harassment.

The Union is continuing to work with the University on the reporting tool.

You can find out more about the tool (and report and incident) at: https://www.brookes.ac.uk/students/report-and-support/

Better helmets for American Football

Better helmets for American Football

The American Football Team were concerned about the quality of their helmets, as the helmets they were using had been phased out by the NFL. We convinced the sports centre to procure NFL approved helmets for the team.

Black History Month events

Black History Month events

To celebrate Black History Month, we hosted a range of activities, including a lecture from Dr Kehinde Andrews who is the head of the first ever Black Studies course in the UK. We also hosted Rum and Reggae - a Windrush anniversary performance with award-winning Scratchylus, and a day of events dedicated to anti-trafficking and modern slavery awareness.

Society of the month

Society of the month

We’ve introduced “society of the month” for societies which we feel are doing great work. This society will recieve £100 to spend on society activities and events.

Established student communities

Established student communities

We established student communities to help support the portfolio officers and offer students from specific backgrounds, or with specific interests, the opportunity to make suggestions, hold events or campaign for change.

Submitting events plans as a society is now easier

Submitting events plans as a society is now easier

We’ve streamlined the process to make planning a society event as easy as possible. The new system is: safe, digital, accessible, user-friendly, transparent, and collaborative.

No more dissertation printing

No more dissertation printing

We campaigned for the University to move away from physical hand-ins for dissertations. The new online submission process will save money and paper, and prevents students needing to travel to campus unnecessarily.

Christmas market

Christmas market

Our Event Management Students put on a Christmas market with us in the Forum. This gave them the chance to gain valuable work experience. Plus they had a churro stand!

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Introduced a Sports Officer

Introduced a Sports Officer

The new Sports Officer role is providing a valuable link between the Union and sports teams. This is a way for sports students to make sure their concerns are heard and acted on.

- We’ve secured new helmets for the American football team after they raised concerns about the safety of their current kit.

Gender Neutral Toilets

Gender Neutral Toilets

We campaigned for the University to introduce more gender neutral toilets across its campuses.

Free emergency sanitary provision

Free emergency sanitary provision

Our Women’s Officer campaigned for free emergency sanitary provision. You’ll find free sanitary products in the accessible toilet by the JHBB reception - for those moments when the shop is closed and you’re caught unawares.

We also campaigned for the installation of a sanitary vending machine to ensure that you can access sanitary products 24/7.

Supporting Homeless Oxfordshire

Supporting Homeless Oxfordshire

We ran a Christmas donation drive to support Homeless Oxfordshire. Students and staff donated a large amount of goods, from coats to socks, dog treats to pasta. Your support will make a huge different to the people that Homeless Oxfordshire supports.

We’re planning a sleep-out to support them as well - so watch this space!

Invisible Disability toilet signs

Invisible Disability toilet signs

Our Disabled Students’ officer campaigned to install ‘Not every disability is visible’ signs on the accessible toilets on campus. This helps makes students with invisible illnesses feel more comfortable about using accessible toilets, by reminding everyone that you can’t always see someone’s disability.

Pizza & loaded fries in Union Bar

Pizza & loaded fries in Union Bar

You wanted pizza on the menu in the Union Bar. We’ve introduced pizza and loaded fries!

Microwaves at Marston Road

Microwaves at Marston Road

A student submitted a Big Idea asking for more microwaves at Marston Road. We’ve supplied extra microwaves to cut down the queues at lunch time in the common area.

guide dog sessions

guide dog sessions

We hosted another Meet the Guide Dogs Session for you. The session raised £884.66 for Guide Dogs UK, and allowed hundreds of students to spend time cuddling guide dogs and finding out more about what Guide Dogs UK do.

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Started Coffee House Sessions

Started Coffee House Sessions

You asked for more events. We now host Coffee House Sessions every Thursday in Union Bar, in conjunction with the Events Management students.

Coffee House Sessions brings live acoustic music to Union Bar, showcasing new music and rising stars.

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Improved Arrivals Weekend!

Improved Arrivals Weekend!

Our Arrivals and Freshers’ survey told us that students wanted a better arrivals weekend experience.

So, we hosted the biggest Arrivals Festival yet. It was packed with free live music, showcases from societies and over 1,300 free BBQ burgers! Our Brookes Buddies were at out and about in their distinctive orange T-shirts welcoming new students to halls and helping them settle in.

Free self defence sessions

Free self defence sessions

We covered the costs for a series of self defence sessions so you could learn new skills, get fit and feel safer.https://www.brookesunion.org.uk/thestudentvoice)

Hot Halal Food

Hot Halal Food

We’ve been working on an idea raised via our Big Ideas platform. We’re pleased to announce that the Uni is introducing a halal catering offer as of today (Mon 25 Jan):

  • Halal chicken dishes served in Taylors Yard as standard
  • Halal chicken and beef burgers available from the Union Bar on request
  • Harcourt Kitchen serving a hot Halal dish daily
  • A range of Halal wraps and sandwiches available across all campuses

Thanks to Akeel (the student who raised the idea and worked with us to make this happen), plus the Catering team and the Multifaith Chaplaincy.

Have you got an idea for change? Tell us: brookesunion.org.uk/thestudentvoice

Mental Health Strategy

Mental Health Strategy

We’re working with the University on their student mental health and wellbeing strategy to ensure that students are placed at the heart of the strategy. We also sit on a panel of local stakeholders who work to set the local area’s policies and strategy.

Wheatley Library

Wheatley Library

Wheatley Library is now 24/7! You can access this via the entrance on the ground floor of the extension using your card.

Additional Adviser

Additional Adviser

We’ve recruited another adviser for our Advice Team, who will focus on student money and outreach.

Better room booking policy

Better room booking policy

Sometimes lectures were scheduled in the evening on campuses and in locations where coffee outlets were closed. We’ve pushed the University to change the priority given to ‘available amenities’ when scheduling sessions, which means that the availability of food and coffee is taken into account as a priority.

Hot water & microwaves at Harcourt

Hot water & microwaves at Harcourt

Students at Harcourt wanted access to hot water and microwaves so that you could bring packed lunches and make hot drinks during the day. We’ve installed these in Westminster Square at Harcourt, alongside a range of seating.

(We’re working with the estates team to install provision in the JHBB. We’ll let everyone know when we have firm dates for this.)

Range of events

Range of events

We’ve worked with the Events Management students to put on a range of different events, including quiz nights in the Union Bar and a Halloween film screening. The team are also putting on another Brookes Got Talent show. https://www.brookesunion.org.uk/talent

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