With first semester coming to a close, we wanted to reflect on what an insane year we've had at University. It's been an unprecedented semester to end an unprecedented year, but if we're completely honest there's a lot that we should be proud of as a community.
The SU Officer team have been spending more time than ever in discussions with the University to ensure that your views are represented. As your officers, the most important part of our job is engaging with all students to ensure that we have a clear picture of what's happening across the board. That way, we can make informed decisions about how to work with and lobby the University to make changes that are truly needed. This has been more important than ever this year and we couldn't have done it without continuous feedback, forums, discussion and engagement from our students.
Find out what we've been up to.
As our usual events have had to come to a halt for safety reasons, we had to be creative in how we ensure that everyone gets a positive University experience. Starting off the semester with Freshers' Week, thanks to the Freshers' Week Event Managers and Captains we still managed to give a warm welcome to our incoming Freshers. Some of the activities we've put on have been so successful we'll be carrying them on in the future!
Throughout the semester, we've seen a range of virtual workouts, film nights, quizzes and events being hosted on The SU Bath Community and Microsoft Teams. We also started to bring back some of our fave in-person events such as Weekend Warm-Up and Mixology, and of course saw the East Village pop up on campus to give you all a place to unwind after a busy week of lectures. We really hope you have enjoyed the bits of normality this semester and look forward to welcoming you back to The Plug in 2021.
Throughout the festive period there will still be lots for you all to do, so make sure to keep an eye out on the What's On page for more information.
To our fabulous execs and committees, we are SO PROUD of what you've pulled off this semester. This year we've implemented a completely new membership structure which had a positive response from our student groups, despite a few teething problems at the start. We've been particularly proud of groups such as cheerleading, karate, ChaOS, sailing, BUSMS and V Team who have responded to a completely different way of running their group with such optimism, creativity, and positivity. It's been fantastic seeing the different ways everyone has adjusted to virtual activities and the different ways you've aimed to ensure everyone feels welcome.
This year we've also had some exciting work happening in the background. At the start of the semester, our sports, societies and volunteering staff made a move to The Edge and at the same time, we also welcomed a team directly dedicated to The Arts. We have also secured space in the new Dartmouth Avenue for our student groups to use. Both of these are HUGE in terms of facilities and resources for our student groups.
Using our Voice
What an incredible semester it's been for the student voice! We've made some incredible changes to the academic landscape thanks to the contribution of student panels, officers and members of the student voice team. There's almost too much to mention in one email so make sure to check out the student voice update to get the full lowdown. One of the biggest achievements of the semester has been the introduction of the no-detriment policy on campus. It's been a long process; with a lot of back and forth, as we continuously raised in meetings with the University Senior Management team how everyone has been, and continues to be, impacted differently by Covid-19 and highlighted the increased need of more support. Find out more.
A bit more extra time on our hands has meant more time to develop some skills. This semester, the Skills Training sessions became integrated with the University MySkills platform to make them even more accessible to everyone. The skills trainers have been running a variety of sessions, including the very popular Chinese cooking tutorial! We're looking forward to running more of these soon.
There have also been some great part-time jobs coming up for anyone who needs some extra cash. Check out the jobs page. There's also some positions within Alumni Relations for their Alumni Telethon - in fact they're looking for 40 people! Make sure to give this a look over and apply if it suits your skills! Apply now.
Supporting Each Other
Community support has been amplified this year, as we've all been dealing with the pandemic differently. The SU advisors have been- and will continue to- offer support on a whole host of issues. To give you some examples of the help they can give, this year they've offered support on academic appeals, advice for isolating or shielding students, helping offer sexual health advice, mental health advice and advice if you feel you're being unfairly treated. No problem is too big or too small. Contact the advisors.
One huge achievement this year is the University being recognised as a University of Sanctuary which recognises the work that the University has done to welcome refugees and asylum seekers. This has largely been thanks to lobbying from students, particularly Bath STAR and Amnesty.
We have also recently launched the Think Before You Ink campaign alongside Bath Spa to ensure that nobody gets drawn into housing contracts too quickly. To find out more about this, as well as your rights as prospective tenants please read our webpage.
Looking forward to 2021
We're pretty glad to be saying goodbye to 2020, as I'm sure most of you are too. With the new year comes a bittersweet fresh start for The SU. On 11 December, we say goodbye to our CEO, Andrew, but we're also excited to see any fresh ideas the new CEO will have. We already have so much to look forward to and the list keeps growing:
- The return of Officer Elections - nominations open on Monday 25 January so if you're thinking of running, check out the webpage
- *fingers crossed* being able to return to a bit of normality in The Plug (pretty please let us be able to go to Score again)
- Continuing work on Green Impact Award to become as sustainable as possible
- Moving into our new spaces, Dartmouth Avenue and The Edge
Whatever you're doing over the Christmas break, we hope you spend the time relaxing and reflecting on everything you've achieved this year. It's been a wild one, but we got through it. Happy holidays from everyone at The SU