Student Advisory Board 21/11/22

December 6, 2022

On the 21st of November in the Queens Building, the second Student Advisory Board took place. In the previous Student Advisory Board, the Board asked for a different venue that would allow for more collaborative discussion, and as a result, a new venue was identified.  

The first thing on the agenda was an update from Lily, Guild President, about what’s happened since the last Advisory Board and an opportunity for questions to be asked.

Members asked a plethora of questions from What is meant by Industrial Action compensation? To How can students get involved with Campaign work?

This Student Advisory Board was run differently from the first – but following a general update and Q&A it began with the same topic: the new Officer roles. Following a couple of sessions where Board members could learn more about the Officer roles and what the different options being considered by the Trustee Board were, the Board returned as a group to learn about what the final options being presented to them were.  

Following that update, the Board split into two groups to discuss in-depth the possibilities of a Student Living Officer. From these discussions, it emerged that Board members didn’t identify with Opportunities Officer as a meaningful role title – and thus they suggested Activities and Employability as an alternative. The discussion continued into whether Liberation or Community were most accurate and meaningful to students, or whether it was most appropriate to have a Welfare or a Student Living Officer.  

Coming out of this session; the Board recommended to the Trustee Board that the roles would be as follows:

Education Officer
Societies & Employability Officer
Communities & Equality Officer
Student Living Officer

The Trustee Board are considering this and the outcome will be communicated to the Advisory Board.

The Advisory Board then tried a new approach of discussion – called Open Space – where everyone can go around and discuss the things that matter to them – dropping in and out of conversations, and sharing their input across lots of different topics decided by them. These conversations included Mental Health, Academic Mitigation, and Cost of Living.

Academic Mitigation

  • Desire to increase this back
  • Difference between faculties in mitigation
  • What actions could students do?

Cost of Living

  • Hardship funding
  • Accessing external support
  • Lower cost options for Society events

Mental Health

  • Support through exam stress
  • Peer support for Mental Health
  • How could lecturers support?

The Board then received an update on UCU’s planned industrial action and what the Guild and Officers were doing. The final element for discussion was about how the Advisory Board works – now there have been two, what parts worked and what didn’t. The Advisory Board was keen to continue trying new things, but were happy with the chairing and facilitation hybrid.

The next Advisory Board will be taking place in January.