We'll be lobbying to improve mental health support for students for this upcoming year. We’re conscious that student wellbeing has been hit hard by the pandemic, and UAL’s resources are sadly not enough.
This is why we’ll be pushing for the university to make a greater investment in its student support services. Linking this to UAL’s Anti-Racism Strategy, we want to make sure that marginalised students, who are more likely to have been affected by the pandemic, can get the support they need. We’ll also be lobbying for mental health to be more integrated into curriculums, and for more thorough staff development so that academics can better support students at a local level.
The Students’ Union is always working to build community and wellbeing for students outside of their studies. The Companion Scheme, which gives students a platform to connect virtually with other students across UAL, will continue to run in 2020 / 2021 – with further opportunities for you to connect with people from similar backgrounds and create your own liberation groups!
Clubs and Societies have been proven to help improve community and wellbeing for students at UAL. Arts SU is committed to helping students access these groups and to train student leaders with mental health first aid training. This year we are lobbying UAL to let students access hardship funding to support them in covering the costs for membership to a Sports Club or Society. We’d also like UAL Councillors to introduce social prescribing. This is to help students accessing the service be introduced to communities and activities to better their mental health.
Crits at UAL are notoriously anxiety inducing, especially for marginalized students who, not only might navigate difficult subjects in their work, but then must retell or relive traumatic experiences whilst defending their work in a group environment. Arts SU would like to work with the university to reform Crits at UAL. We want to make them more accessible and friendly to all students, giving staff training to navigate these conversations fairly.
Activities Officer - Eleanor West Welfare Officer - Pinky Latt
- Identifying improvements to be made towards all mental health support provided by UAL
- Mental Health First Aid training to be made compulsory for all staff and more training for students
- Produce a report examining issues faced by students during crits and ways to make them inclusive safe spaces for constructive feedback
- Getting UAL to commit to creating a hardship fund that allows students to access clubs, societies and activities