VP Coleraine Officer, Andy McAnallen, October Blog

This month I had the pleasure of attending a residential training weekend with our UUSU senior reps, at Carrowmena Activity Centre in Limavady. It’s the first time our Union has held a training weekend for senior reps

UUSU senior reps - Carrowmena Activity Centre

I was heartened to hear stories of what enthused people put themselves forward for their roles — it’s clear we have strong leadership, driving our rep system forward! I look forward to working closely with our Senior Rep team this year, representing our students and raising concerns at the highest level of the University. I also spoke at a Course Rep Training earlier this month on the Coleraine Campus, where I managed to get caught up in a game of Snapchat Bingo! This month also saw the University close for a day, with the majority of our students homebound, with the hatches battened down. The Students’ Union responded to a surge of questions from concerned students, asking about arrangements for the day. The University have ensured us that better provisions would be put in place should any other freak weather incident occur, so information can be disseminated more clearly to students.

The Union also held our first Student Council of the academic year on Thursday 2nd November, with all our newly elected student officers in attendance. Our next meeting is set for the 28th November.

At the beginning of November, I travelled with the President Kevin McStravock and VP Jordanstown Oisín Kinsella, as a UUSU delegation to the USI (Union of Students in Ireland) National Council. During a couple of the working groups, Oisín and I gathered more information on how best to pursue initiatives we are working on. One of the initiatives is to provide period packs (tampons/pads) to students as a free service — a service we hope to have set up by the end of this month.

I was also happy see that our Students’ Union bar now offers a vegan sandwich! In addition the Union has been in conversation with other catering outlets on the University to expand their vegan offerings — so all our students can be catered for.

Events-wise there have been some great ones held in the Union this month! CASS organised their first comedy night of the year, headlined by Ulster University alum and general funnyman, Aaron McCann. Our international society, STEW, and the BioMed society both organised movie nights for Halloween. Glitch took over the Union bar on Halloween, for their annual Halloween party, Spooptacular 2017! A few of our newer societies had their first events: the Horticultural society were busy carving pumpkins on Halloween eve — a spooky event which attracted members and non-members alike! Love Veggie hosted their first vegetarian/vegan potluck dinner in the Students’ Union bar — featuring live music from some talented student musicians.

Lastly, the best of luck for the deadlines and tests that many of you will be facing this month. If at any stage you’re feeling overwhelmed, stressed or have any other course related problem, don’t hesitate to contact me and we can find you support and/or solutions to your issue.

In Union, Andy

Number of Student Queries for October: 42

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