Local Elections : Academic Edition

Local councillors can have a huge impact on your learning experience whilst at the University of Bath – and on May 2nd 2019, you have the opportunity to change Bath’s politics for the better, ensuring that councilors treat students as equal members of the Bath community.

Over the past four years, B&NES Council has put huge restrictions on the University’s ability to expand and have inputted into the University masterplan, including:

  • Looking at restricting the amount of academic space that can be built without also building housing (so councilors could block more study space for you)
  • Campaigning for the University to pay rent on the land (as we currently pay a tokenistic ‘peppercorn’ rent), with sums of up to £3m being suggested. This would result in departments being forced to make cuts, and directly affect your learning experience
  • The local council oversees the libraries in Bath, which many of our students use to borrow books not found in the University library and as quiet study space, and there have been a number of discussions about cutting budgets and moving away from its current location.

One of the key parts of my role is looking after academic representation: we know how important it is to have a representative to feedback issues and ideas to Directors of Studies and other academics. If students don’t vote, our elected representatives in B&NES council will continue campaigning on an anti-student rhetoric, impacting our studies when we’re full, equal residents of Bath!

It’s easy to register to vote, there will be a polling booth on campus on May 2nd for those of you living in the Bathwick ward or, perhaps even easier, you can apply for a postal vote and do it at your leisure!