It’s official – we’ve made it to the end of Term 2, and the sun has come out to celebrate!
Your Arts SU Sabbatical Officer & Staff Teams have absolutely loved working with our innovative, engaged and diverse student body this term. From supporting your fantastic events as part of LGBTQ+ History Month, through to submitting your ideas for discussion at NUS Conference and advocating for student-raised policy changes to UAL, it’s been a fantastic term and we can’t wait to see what we can achieve next.
Check out what we've achieved so far for each of this year's Campaigns Priorities:
Decolonising & Inclusivity
· We launched a full event programme alongside Arts SU’s BHM and LGBTQ+ HM Exhibitions, including safe-space crits sessions and a whole range of student-led events.
· Georgia Spencer (Welfare Officer) and Calum Sherwood (Senior Policy Coordinator) presented our sector-leading Crits Research at WonkHE National Conference. This project investigates how Crits can function as positive safe spaces which focus on professional development.
· We co-led on pilot sessions of UAL’s Modernising Course Resources Project in collaboration with CCW, exploring decolonisation and how students can bring their own experiences into their dissertations.
· We signposted to decolonisation work, events and services by both internal and external organisations, including LCC Changemakers, International Black History Month and Borderlines.
· We continued to work with UAL to deliver an effective and transparent Anti-Racism Strategy (Legacy Project).
Targeted Accessibility and Support
· We lobbied UAL to agree to add Racial Trauma on the Extenuating Circumstances list.
· We ensured that UAL publish more transparent advice for students, regarding self-certifying for extenuating circumstances.
· We got UAL to commit to Compulsory Disability Awareness Training for all UAL staff, and will be working to roll this out to SU staff and student volunteers (Course Reps and Committee Leaders) in Term 3.
· In partnership with Disability Services, we will be providing paid opportunities to Course Reps on a research project into accessible & inclusive learning (Term 3).
Community Mobilisation & Development
· We ran a student referendum on whether Arts SU should formally support UCU strike action, which you voted overwhelmingly in favour of. In response, we put together an online ‘Strike Hub’ and organised workshops on strike action and grassroots organising.
· We are currently working to compile a Support Pack for Student Sex Workers, alongside organising a launch event with the ICA’s Decriminalised Futures Exhibition.
· We organised two Wellbeing pop-ups, including free manicures, nail treatments and hand massages and a free hot-chocolate station, alongside two free resource & material giveaways to offset the high costs of living and studying in London.
· Syahadah Shahril (Campaigns Officer) ran a session as part of the NUS Student Strike / Walk Out Teach In, with over 60 students from institutions nationwide in attendance.
International Student Support
· We have launched a research project into rising International Student Fees, which will be presented to UAL Senior Leadership (upcoming). We will also be offering paid opportunities for International Students to attend consultation groups surrounding this research.
· We have submitted a policy around Working Rights for International Students to NUS Conference, seeking their support to launch the campaign on a national level. Working with Brenda Hernandez Gonzalez, who has led the campaign, we are advocating for improved freelancing rights for international students, alongside flexible hourly contracts within HE (not fixed due to international visa limits).
You can learn more about Arts SU’s Campaign Priorities for the 21/22 Academic Year here, or alternatively you can keep up with your Sabbatical Officers by viewing their Airtables.
Have a great Easter Break, and we’ll see you in Summer Term!