Hope everyone’s good.
It has been two weeks since Surrey Decides. The two-week long election process where students get to nominate and vote for who we want as representatives in the Students’ Union.
The University of Surrey Students’ Union is a student-run organization that represents the student body both on a local and national level. It is made up of four zones:
- Support and,
Each zone has a number of part-time officers that work to ensure the student experience at the University is satisfactory.
The Voice Zone, for example, does this by providing a platform for student issues to be heard. This could be through feedback surveys or campaigns. It is also responsible for the training of Course and Class Representatives every year for all the courses/programmes provided at the University. The responsibilities of the course reps include researching student opinion, representing students on their course and reporting back. The voice zone is responsible for maintain democracy in the Union.
The Activity Zone aims to improve student engagement with the various Clubs and Societies at the University. They do this by organising events such as the Student & Society Awards and campaigns such as Get Fit Feb and This Girl Can. They deal with all issues relating to societies, memberships and provide guidance on how to create new clubs. They also promote avenues for students to get involved in other extra-curricular activities outside of sports and societies such as volunteering.
The Support Zone is responsible for ensuring all activities carried out by the Union have student support in mind. Student well-being is at the forefront of a good student experience and this is actively recognised and promoted by the Support Zone. They readily organise campaigns in order to raise awareness on issues facing the student body and encourage inclusivity for minorities. Examples of a few campaigns include the Let’s Talk campaigns, which are meant to facilitate and promote conversation around issues important to students. These include consent, body image, well-being, diversity and mental health.
Last but not least, the Community Zone aims to bring the student community together and promote integration with the wider Guildford community. They are responsible for engaging with the local community by communicating student contribution. They lead entertainment projects and social activities across campus, are responsible for welcoming new students, and create volunteering and fundraising opportunities for students to give back to the society.
Every year in February, the election process takes place giving students the opportunity to select the officers in all the zones for the upcoming academic year. Those interested are in charge of their own campaigns. They do this by engaging with the students and displaying their manifestoes. At the end of the process, the candidates are subject to a debate session in which all students are welcome to partake in.
I hope I’ve been able to give an insight into the SU here at Surrey.
Till next time.