Don’t see yourself represented? As a student-led representative body, we need people from all backgrounds and experiences to put yourselves forward for election to reflect the student communities that we serve.
We know that running in an election as someone who identifies with a minority group can sometimes be a bit scarier – that’s why we’ve teamed up with the Student Health & Wellbeing Services and some Higher Education experts to make sure additional support is there if you need it. We’ll also be running a series of workshops called “Owning your nomination” and “Owning your campaign” where we will discuss your unique student journey and where you can use your experiences to your advantage. Our diverse staff team also have our own personal experiences that we can draw on, so we hope you come along and say hi!
Whether you’ve already started through your application and just need a little push, never thought about how standing in the elections would benefit you, or you want to know how we’ll support you through the process, here are 10 reasons why you should stand in this year’s Students’ Union elections!
1. You get to work on big issues that affect students
This role allows you to be the voice of students - you are the main spokespeople for all 26,000 (ish) students here at City, ensuring that the University and the Students’ Union are investing in the student experience. You get to lead on the campaigns that make life a little easier for the students around you and those yet to come, like the £3 hot meals, increased society funding, changes to personal tutoring, exam timetable changes, and the South Asian Heritage Fair.
2. You shape the way things are done around here
Think big! Elected representatives are at the forefront of decision-making. You set the political stances, give crucial feedback on students' experiences, and change the way things run at City SU and the University to most effectively provide students with a great experience.
3. You represent the interests of all City students and the communities you are part of
The last few years have been tough - sitting in this role would give you the opportunity to let University staff know just how hard it is to be a student right now. Through attending meetings and sitting on committees with senior stakeholders at the University, you ensure students are at the heart of decision-making at every level and work together with University staff to ensure all City students are able to achieve the best degree possible.
4. You get support throughout your elections campaign (and after too!)
We have put together a package of support to ensure your campaign experience is a great one. There are many elections support session to attend including workshops about how to create a winning campaign, communication strategies, and how to win over voters. You can apply for a mentor from the Union who can offer you guidance throughout the process and motivate you along the campaign trail. In addition to this, we have teamed up with the Student Health & Wellbeing Service to provide you with a mental health and wellbeing support package that is there when things go wrong, should you need a little extra help at any point.
5. You’ll get to work with passionate and knowledgeable staff at an organisation that cares
All of us at the Union are passionate and dedicated to working with students to deliver the best student experience. We genuinely want the best for you and will be working to support your projects and campaigns. We’re happy when you’re happy!
6. You learn new skills and build character and confidence
The support and training you receive alongside your experiences allow you to develop in key areas that will come in handy in your professional career, such as campaigning, public speaking, community engagement, policy, advocacy, influencing, project management, event planning, budgeting handling, strategic planning, and much more. We help you strengthen your skillset
7. You have unique real-life experiences that make you stand out to employers
This is truly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity! This position is only available to students currently enrolled here at City, so once it’s gone, it’s gone. You get to work on campaigns and projects worth millions of pounds, shape strategies that impact years to come, and leave a lasting legacy.
You will lead a £1m organisation as one of our trustees and you may even sit on the University’s executive boards. Not many young people can say they’ve been a trustee or non-executive director - in fact only 3% of trustees are under the age of 30 and 0.5% are under the age of 24 - so if that applies to you, you would become part of a movement of young trustees shaping the way charities are run.
8. You learn more about yourself as a person
You discover your strengths and explore your values. You get to learn where your passions lie, how you work best, and what makes you tick!
9. You gain access to a wide network
Being in this role means you speak with a lot of people in a variety of different industries. You will be able to build a network of allies who can provide you with advice and support in whichever path you want to take.
10. You get to be part of a larger student network and a national voice
You’ll be able to travel to conferences across the country and work with other student unions and organisations including the National Union of Students to speak at a national level and influence decisions made at UK Parliament. Huge decisions like the two-year graduate visa have been shaped by the national student movement and you could soon be campaigning for national change!
Nominations close on Thursday 15 February so now is the time to start your application! If you want confidential advice about the role or how to run a great campaign, you can book a chat with a member of the team on the elections webpage.