Goodbye my lover

raw

So, here it is – my final ever blog as EHSU President! Instead of my long, boring, political posts I thought i’d do something a bit more light hearted and interview my fellow sabbatical officers as we depart EHSU!

All were asked the same questions (I even interviewed myself at the end – cringe!)                

Mr Patrick Soan – VP Activities 2015/1612924422_10153686239952293_7618394727074956437_n

Why did you run to be a Sabbatical Officer?I felt I had more to give to uni before I could leave, wanting to change up and improve the student experience”

Which part of your role have you enjoyed the most? “Working with and getting to know more students finding out what they have enjoyed and what things can be further developed for next year”

If you had to pick one moment of the year where you have been most proud of your work, what would it be? “VARSITY, no doubt my highlight of the year, not only enjoyed by myself but a lot of people as well”

In one sentence, what would be your best advice to someone coming into a Sabbatical role? “Work wont necessarily come to you, you have to go out engaging with students and finding out what things you can do for them.”

Is there anything you wished you’d done this year which perhaps you haven’t been able to do? “Summer ball, seen a lot of other maybe more prestigious universities pull it off really well, and as edge hill is growing constantly being put on the map around the country I believe this would be something awesome to do”

And finally, what are your plans post-sabbatical life? “Currently coaching tennis and football in America, have the most amazing time, eating loads, getting the worst t-shirt / watch tan lines and meeting some amazing campers and counsellors. When I’m back I aim to do a ski season and then travel ending up in Australia…… putting off the real world for as long as possible #bigkid4life”

Miss Lauren Blundell – VP Welfare 2015/1612987086_10154773250887586_7383555987898571738_n

Why did you run to be a Sabbatical Officer? “I didn’t want the things that happened in my experience throughout university to happen to anyone else. I felt passionate that I was the right person to do so.”

 

Which part of your role have you enjoyed the most? “Getting to be creative, going to Westminster, actually representing students nationally, meeting other sabbatical officers from across the country and of course working with my adoring team of officers. They are wonderful.”

 

If you had to pick one moment of the year where you have been most proud of your work, what would it be? “There has been so, so many. However, a highlight has to be working with an academic member of staff writing a paper on the subject I am most passionate about- Consent.”

 

In one sentence, what would be your best advice to someone coming into a Sabbatical role? “Learn how to bring your personality into the role. The students have voted you in because they like YOU and what YOU’RE about. Show ‘em how good you are.”

 

Is there anything you wished you’d done this year which perhaps you haven’t been able to do? “I wish that I could have done more. I would have put on so many more activities for students. Ormskirk isn’t exactly brimming with things to do and our campus has so much potential!”

 

And finally, what are your plans post-sabbatical life? “I am going to do a MA in Theatre for Young Audiences at Bath Spa. It’s pretty much a posh Edge Hill and instead of ducks it has sheep. Ormskirk has given me so much over my 4 years here and I will always be thankful. BYE, FELECIA.”

Miss Rosie McKenna – VP Academic Representation 2015/1611407316_1098529243525661_4436660421668291467_n

Why did you run to be a Sabbatical Officer? “I ran to be VP Academic Rep because I saw some things that needed changing, & I wanted to be the one to change them. From Course Reps to placement communication strategies, I just wanted to make things better for students.”

Which part of your role have you enjoyed the most? “I’ve most enjoyed seeing students come into their own, & being able to facilitate that. Like seeing course reps find their voices in meetings, or seeing students in the LGBT+ society really getting into motions & policy debate at their conference. It’s been an absolute privilege to be witness to all the amazing things students do.”

If you had to pick one moment of the year where you have been most proud of your work, what would it be? “Taking students to Westminster & watching them lobby MPs over cuts to Maintenance grants. Empowering students has been by far the best part of this job, & watching one student take a Tory MP to task over priorities in the governments funding allocation was personally very satisfying.”

In one sentence, what would be your best advice to someone coming into a Sabbatical role? “Remember that you exist outside of this job.”

Is there anything you wished you’d done this year which perhaps you haven’t been able to do? “Honestly? I’ve completed everything I wanted to do. The only thing I wish I’d done is maybe have campaigned earlier on the EU referendum.”

And finally, what are your plans post-sabbatical life? “Post-sabb I’m going to finish the 3rd year of my degree in Drama, & be your Part Time Women’s Officer!”

Mr Steven Rouke – El Presidente 2015/16

12717463_10153820026721827_3989190524786685465_nWhy did you run to be a Sabbatical Officer? “For me, I was fed up with my degree and thought I needed a break. A few people spoke to me about running, and I thought I could really make a positive change to not only the student experience, but to myself.”

Which part of your role have you enjoyed the most? “Personally, it’s been my development as a person. I really feel this role has brought out a passion in me like never before, something I feel I’ve been searching for all my working life! The role itself, I think it’s the feeling inside you get when you’ve really helped a student/group of students – that warm fuzzy feeling they talk about in movies!”

If you had to pick one moment of the year where you have been most proud of your work, what would it be? “There’s been so many times where I’ve been really proud this year, but what stands out most is our engagement with 150 sports players with the pride in sport workshops. Instilling liberation education in our sports teams (as well as the wider student community) is so important, and hopefully this has only been the start.”

In one sentence, what would be your best advice to someone coming into a Sabbatical role? “The role will be very demanding, and will take over your life at times. Make sure to stay in contact with friends throughout the year; my friends helped me through some real tough battles towards the end of my year and I wouldn’t have made it without them.”

Is there anything you wished you’d done this year which perhaps you haven’t been able to do? “It’s easy to get bogged down with things you didn’t achieve as opposed to celebrating what you did achieve. Personally, I think I let down a lot of our liberation groups and their officers – it took me a while getting to grips with the role and if I had more time or been better prepared I’d of worked a lot more closely with our liberation officers, they’re so important to the Institution and the student experience of those groups.”

And finally, what are your plans post-sabbatical life? “Nothing exciting really. I’m back to finish my degree in September so just chill over summer, work, go on a couple of holidays and hopefully come back feeling ready to tackle a dissertation, multiple exams and multiple assignments. If it all goes to plan, I’ll be travelling Asia this time next year!”

And to end, i’ve put my favourite memory of my dear Vice Presidents below….

13268179_10154912733582586_8943027207584816054_oLozza B – Throwing water, paint, cream and whatever the f…. else over me for our pre fresher’s video!

Rosie McKenna aka defender of Norn Iron – Our first night out together… She threw up, in a bush, outside a bar, after multiple shots. The former President fell out with me because I was laughing so much at her instead of helping her!

Snakey Soan – My year has been filled with so many funny memories with my best mate but they most definitely aren’t for public ears… But i’ll forever remember every single day in the office the tons of abuse we’d shout across the office at each other, and the office not being sure if we were messing around or not! (Sometimes I wasn’t) – Or when he’s drunk, and behaving like a child and getting told off by staff!

Before we leave out, i’d just like to give a massive shout out to our comrades in the North West who we’ve loved working with this year – UCLAN SU, Liverpool Guild of Students and Liverpool SU!

12278691_10156346191600093_510962289124184_nAnd a special thanks to our closest allies, and great friends at Liverpool Hope Students’ Union. It’s been an absolute pleasure to work with you great officers this year… Much love Ayo, Pranay & Kira (Second best President in UK).

It’s been a pleasure EHU Students. Your Officers next year will be bloody fantastic; help them, love them, engage with them and support them, they’ll be doing everything for you!

Much Love,

EHSU Sabbatical Officers 2015/16

tumblr_o7mjxufoy31rl53x2o2_500-1464007077

 

 

Stronger IN – why students should Vote Remain tomorrow

So. Here we are.
Tomorrow, the United Kingdom will vote on its membership of the European Union, to remain, or to stay.
Now, I’m just going to say that regardless of how you’re voting, it’s crucial that you get out and have your say. This will be the biggest democratic decision our generation will make. It’s a once in a lifetime vote. So make sure you use yours. 
But, as Edge Hill SU have a mandate from our membership to promote it, (and evidence suggests around 70% of students will vote in,) I’m going to tell you why I think it is crucial that tomorrow, students vote to remain.
 
1. Being in the EU means students are free to work, study, and live abroad without visa costs.
2. Over 200,000 students have studied or worked on the Erasmus programme.
3. The EU puts close to a billion pounds per year into Higher Education and research alone.
4. Being in the EU means more jobs and opportunities, with about 3 million jobs in the UK being directly linked to the EU.
Screen Shot 2015-10-29 at 19.31.10
5. We can better tackle climate change by working with our European Partners. Global warming is, as the name suggests, a global problem regardless of borders. We are best untied to fight it.
6. We can better tackle crime and terrorism by remaining. Interpol and communication between law enforcement facilitated by the EU means that criminals cannot escape justice by escaping the country.
CVEzf2kWUAAqrSG
7. The EU provides development funding for impoverished areas. Specifically in the North West the EU has funded projects in Liverpool and Manchester, contributing to them becoming the major cities they are today.
 
And more than this, the EU shares our values. As a member of the National Union of Students, a collective movement of Students’ Unions all over the UK, we are rooted in collectivism. We believe in the power of working together to achieve common goals. We believe in equality for all, regardless of gender identity, sexual orientation, age, ethnicity, economic background, ability, etc.
These are EU values.
 
It is the EU that enshrines and upholds our workers rights. It is the EU that ensures maternity pay. It is the EU that ensures employers cannot discriminate.
Will these things disappear on Friday should we vote to Leave? No. But the fact remains that the EU is what gave us the rights, and protects them. And that is worth a lot in my opinion.
Cg_24dpWMAMpjDP
 
On top of this, something that has been very concerning for me is the talk throughout this campaign from certain people on the Vote Leave campaign, saying that multiculturalism is somehow a bad thing.
Let me be clear, we do not fear a diverse society. Students know that we are better off for having a society that celebrates culture and embraces diversity. Universities have always been a haven for that. 
I do not fear immigration, immigration is a good thing. And it’s something that goes two ways. There are up to 2.2 million British people who live at least part of the year in another European country.
 
So, let’s cut through the fear, the lies, and the silliness.
For the economic benefits, the societal benefits, and the shared values and ideals, I ask you to Vote Remain tomorrow.
With love, Rosie McKenna
Vice President Academic Representation
StrongerIn
(& if nothing else, Vote Remain to see the smug smile wiped from Nigel Farage’s face.)