Candidate for the position of Vice President Education
Do you think that UWS should be doing better? Do you think your education is more important than profit margins? Do you think we deserve more support? I agree. Let's make senior management listen!
Most years I deal with a trickle of student issues. This year it has been a deluge! The message I am hearing loud and clear is that students are begging the University for help and support during this pandemic, and are being ignored.
This isn't what we were promised!
Our students are suffering, and instead of engaging with students and our representatives, the University keeps stubbornly doing their own thing. Our Association asked for an equal "No Detriment Policy" to last year. They were ignored! The University claims that the regulations do not allow equal treatment to last year's graduates.
I will draw on my experience to ensure that the University cannot hide behind regulations and legalese to avoid treating students fairly.
Since 2014 student numbers have risen from around 15000 to over 20500. In the same period staff numbers have fallen from a peak of 1441 to just 1181 last year!* Our lecturers are working harder than ever, but they just don't have the support or numbers needed. The University is not broke! Over the same period UWS increased the Vice-Chancellor's pay from £247000 to £280000!*
I will fight to reverse the constant cuts damaging the UWS educational experience.
Last year student council was told there was no money to abolish fees. This year the excuse is the University regulations.
I will lobby the University to abolish these unfair fees. If they try to cite regulations not to, I will seek to amend those regulations. If they claim there is no money I will scrutinise the budgets. I will be relentless until the University does the right thing!
I will ensure that every student is able to contact me directly, and knows who I am. I will provide regular updates explaining exactly how the University is responding to student feedback. I will blog regularly about my work so students know exactly what is going on, good and bad.
I will ensure that the UWS student body CANNOT be ignored, and that where improvements are possible, they happen.
I have 15+ years experience of advocating for students. I have done policy work for ChildLine, Welfare Rights in James Watt College, have served on the board of a homeless charity and have worked as a Citizen's Advice Advisor. I have fought, and defeated organisations like the DWP, SAAS, multinational companies and even the mighty Glasgow University. I make things happen!
*Figures taken from the UWS annual reports.