Hi, my name is Harry Sampson and I’m your Student Union President. Today I’ll be highlighting the upcoming NUS National Conference and how you can have your views represented by our delegation. First, a bit of context.
‘NUS’ is the acronym for the ‘National Union of Students’. It is likely you’ll already know this, as they often appear in the news for various positive and negative reasons. Similar to how your student union here seeks to represent you and provide entertainment and other services, the NUS aims to represent students on a national level. Like a fair proportion of student unions nationwide, we are affiliated to them. This is something which is voted on yearly at our union general meeting (in May).
Again like your student union here in Winchester, the NUS is directed by a team of full-time officers. These are elected yearly at various conferences, alongside a ‘block of 15’ which are the national equivalent of our part-time officers. At the national conference your delegates also get the opportunity to vote on proposed motions, budgets and scrutinise the work of the current officer team.
Winchester Student Union is only entitled to send two delegates. One of these are the President (myself, and before me Savannah and even before then Naomi). The other is elected at the SU officer elections. As the NUS requirement is that 50% of the delegation must be female, we were only able to open the position to female students. I have expressed continual disappointment that this does not extend to non-binary individuals, but thankfully this is coming to a vote at the conference. The second delegate coming to national conference with myself will be Claire Skinner.
We’ll be setting off for the conference Tuesday 25th April and there until it finishes on Thursday 27th April. This is why it is important that any views you have on the various issues is made clear to us before then, as during the busy conference it is unlikely we’ll have much chance to liaise back with Winchester between votes. While both delegates have their own views on a number of issues and have been voted in by the student body to represent those views, Claire and I are open to mature discussion on all motions and candidates.
Some of the motions relate to; action on boycotting the NSS, educational costs, international students and Brexit, many different ideas for national demonstrations and even proposing a campaign to abolish the Monarchy. There are many more, but as you’ll see from the document in the link below, far too many to go into much detail for in a 700 word article.
The full list of our voting records will be put up and made available on this website for means of transparency, alongside the voting records of delegates sent to LGBT+ Conference (when I receive them) and Trans Conference.
Please feel free to scrutinise the documents in the links below and, most importantly, LET US KNOW WHAT YOU THINK! Here in Winchester our delegation will not be looking at what is muttered sarcastically or with malice over Twitter and other forms of indirect media, but instead what is said to us directly, whether through email, messages, letters, carrier pigeons, smoke signals and even – yes, I know it sounds totally absurd – in actual genuine human interaction during normal conversation.
If you’d like to get in touch with us, please feel free to email SU_President@winchester.ac.uk. Please also feel free to visit us in the office or just randomly ask us questions if you see us walking about. I’m honestly very lonely this time of year when the students are on Easter Break and would appreciate the conversation.
For your information:
The full list of candidates can be found here: http://conference.nusconnect.org.uk/elections/candidates
Several documents are available here, including the agenda and minutes from the last conference: http://conference.nusconnect.org.uk/what-s-on/agenda-and-papers