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Representing students

11 September 2012

Representing students - Harry NewmanHarry Newman, President of the Students’ Union

Introducing the new Elected Officers at the Students’ Union

The Elected Officers are eight students, elected by the entire student body, who work full time at the Students' Union for a year to make sure that student views are represented.

Their roles address a broad range of aspects relating to student life. They listen to how students want things to be done, and work with the relevant people to make those things happen. They also represent student views to the University, as well as local and national decision-makers, to ensure that Cardiff’s student voices are heard.

Harry Newman was elected as Students’ Union President for 2012/13. Harry is the figurehead of the Students’ Union, and oversees and co-ordinates the work of the Elected Officer team. Harry told Blas about his two key ideas for the coming academic year:

"My first priority is to push the Union towards being known as a modern, progressive organisation. I’d like to do this by improving the look and feel of the building and developing the Union’s presence across both campuses with a view to improving students’ awareness of our services. The Lounge was a leap in the right direction but the building still has great potential. In the past year we commissioned a concept for a huge redevelopment to the front; and we’ll see our new Centre for Skills, Enterprise and Volunteering through to completion in time for the start of term. It’s my job now to secure investment in the 3rd floor societies, Athletic Union, advice and academic representation areas to make them more appealing, modern and accessible. It’s really all about meeting students’ higher expectations. The Union is more than just a brown brick night club and we can now prove that that message is really getting through. In the past year we recorded over 10,000 unique student ID’s using our ‘non-nightlife’ services. What we do, we do very well. It’s now about getting into the academic Schools to inspire students to grasp the opportunities we offer.

"My second priority is to ensure that our students benefit from the massive changes in the University’s management and in higher education generally. While the war of words on student fees rages on, we will react by seizing the emerging opportunity. As the University recognises that new home students paying up to three times more will expect far more, we gain the legitimacy to fight for a better student experience. I hope to work closely with our new Vice-Chancellor, Chair of Council and Chief Operating Officer to put teaching quality and the student experience right at the heart of decision making."

Along with Harry, the other Elected Officers for 2012/2013 are:

Academic & University Affairs Officer – Beth Button

Beth’s role as Education Officer is to represent the 28,000-strong student body at Cardiff University on educational issues. Beth will lobby the University on issues raised by students, as well as sitting on various committees and councils representing high-level decisions. She aims to use her role to champion, develop and campaign to improve the system of Student Academic Representatives; enhance opportunities for students to have their voice heard within the University, and work to improve staff-student relationships. Beth has just graduated from the School of Social Sciences with a degree in Education and Sociology.

Welfare & Community Officer – Megan David

Megan’s role is to co-ordinate all welfare campaigns and help to raise awareness about issues affecting students. Megan oversees student-led welfare services and works with the Union’s Advice and Representation Centre and its Skills Development Service and the University’s Support Service to co-ordinate welfare provision and support for students. She also works to ensure that the Union is committed to its environmental policy and its corporate social responsibility. Megan recently graduated in Journalism and Sociology.

Societies Officer – Adam Curtis

Adam’s role is to oversee all of the 150 societies which the Students’ Union has to offer. These range from religious groups, cultural and course-based groups, to international and performance groups. It’s Adam’s responsibility to encourage the celebration of cultural diversity through events such as the week-long Go Global festival held within the Students’ Union for the entire student body. If you want to join a society, set one up, or if you’re already running one, Adam is the person you need to speak to. Adam recently completed his BA in Religious Studies and Theology at Cardiff University and was heavily involved with student societies during his studies.

Athletic Union President - Cari Davies

Cari’s role is to oversee the successful running of sports clubs and teams within the Athletic Union at Cardiff University. This includes designating club budgets, organising AU Council and the AGM, as well as putting on events such as Varsity, Dodgeball Tournaments and the AU Awards. Cari graduated from the School of European Studies in 2012, having studied European Politics and International Relations.

Head of Student Media – Chris Williams

Chris is the Editor of gair rhydd, Cardiff University’s weekly newspaper produced by students, and has an oversight role in the day-to-day operations of all elements of student media at Cardiff — including the fortnightly lifestyle magazine, Quench, our radio station, Xpress, and CUTV, our TV station. Chris studied Politics at Cardiff.

Union Development & Internal Affairs Officer – Kieran Gandhi

Kieran’s role is concerned with the development of the Student Union’s internal governance and democracy. He’s responsible for the ongoing development of both the company and the charity side of the Students’ Union in line with research and the Strategic Plan. Kieran acts as an independent auditor, holding the staff and the Senior Management Team at the Students’ Union to account, and offering transparency to the student body of both the company and the charity sides of the organisation. Kieran is a graduate of the School of City and Regional Planning.

Heath Park Campus Officer – Hannah Pask

Hannah’s role was established with the aim of improving the University experience of Healthcare students through enhancing their facilities and access to services, both at the Heath Park Campus and at the main Students’ Union building. Hannah represents all Healthcare students at an academic, social and welfare level. She will sit on councils with the Heads of Schools; provide the University with your feedback; have regular meetings with your sports and society committee members, and help to organise events specifically for Healthcare students. Hannah recently graduated from the school of Healthcare Studies with a BSc Hons in Physiotherapy.

Related links

Students’ Union