We're representing you at One Friar Gate Square!

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We're representing you!

Scarlet chaired the latest student forum at One Friar Gate Square. Find out what feedback was given about the site and what actions have been taken by staff:


Book drop off at site

  • Students asked if there was going to be a book drop off for their site.
  • ACTION – Scarlet Moss to check and request response from Sue Morrison

Feedback regarding Blends

  • Students have had positive feedback about the staff, including the new site supervisor Lee.
  • Students asked if there could be more of an offering for students with allergies. It was mentioned in particular that they often run out of soya milk. Chris Meynall mentioned that they are limited on storage space and how much stock they can order, so do struggle to cater for all allergies. However, it was said that if there is something a student wants to see in particular he will look into it.
  • ACTION – Chris to check if more soya milk can be ordered in future.


  • Students asked if the recycling bins can be changed so that they have separate bags – one for recycling and one for waste, as currently the recycling and regular waste sections all feed into the same bag. It was raised that this was an issue across other sites as well.
  • Lydia Riley – ACTION COMPLETE - Lydia raised this with the cleaning contractor and has been assured that this will not happen again.
  • Discussion around re-usable cups – Chris Meynall mentioned that the Union are hoping to introduce re-usable travel mugs that customers can purchase, for which they will receive a discount on their drink. The initiative will aim to reduce the use of disposable cups.

More staff for International Relations department

  • Several students asked if more staff could be hired for their department. They said that the current staff are fantastic but that they have too much work, especially now with the addition of a single honours, alongside a Joint honours, aspect of their course. Students commented that the staff do their best but cannot respond to emails quickly and that this is really needed especially when students are doing their dissertations.
  • Charlotte Hargreaves has already recommended that they hire more staff for this department because of student feedback. She has sent this recommendation to Kamil Omoteso (PVC Dean of Business, Law and Social Science) and this will be taken to an Executive meeting in March, so this is under consideration.
  • ACTION – For Charlotte Hargreaves to feed back to the students the results from this meeting.

Notice Boards

  • Student said that the new notice board in the social space is locked and only one member of staff has the key. Asked if this could be improved, either by more members of staff having a key or the notice board being unlocked.
  • Charlotte Hargreaves - ACTION COMPLETE - Key will now be left at reception so students can use it.

Winning bid for more money for OFGS

  • Charlotte Hargreaves told the students that they have recently won a bid for £250,000 to make improvements to the site. Some of this will go towards looking into the issue with temperature in the building. Another potential use for the funds will be to create more of an interactive learning space in the social space. This could take a similar format to the learning curve at Kedleston Road- Charlotte is working with the estates team to finalise some options.
  • Students said this would be very beneficial. They asked how long this might take and whether students could have a say when the options were finalised?
  • Charlotte said that she will be discussing this in the project meeting next week (w/c 04.03.19). She would like to get students involved in choosing the design from the options given, and she would like to speak to students from all courses about it. She will keep the Union in the loop with this so we can help to promote any following focus groups etc.
  • ACTION – Charlotte to share these potential designs with the Union/students once formulated, to gather student feedback on the proposed changes.

Induction for students to learn about facilities at Kedleston Road

  • Students raised the issue that most of them do not know what facilities are at KR and how to book or access them. A potential solution was to have an induction over there.
  • ACTION – Cheryl Stephens has been speaking to the programme leader, Karin, about this further. Scarlet has been contacted to keep her in the loop.

Water fountain needed at 67 Bridge Street

  • Students raised the need for a water fountain and printer at the social space at 67 Bridge Street.
  • ACTION – Scarlet to take this feedback to the Estates team.

More plugs in lecture theatres

  • Students highlighted that new rows have been added in rooms FG201 and FG301 to increase capacity, but these rows have a limited amount of plug sockets in them.
  • Charlotte Hargreaves said that this will be something that will be looked at as part of the wider project to make improvements to the building.
  • Fiona Shelton suggested that it may be useful to look at the potential for a charging station to be put into OFGS, perhaps in the social space area.
  • ACTION – Charlotte to liaise with Estates to look into the potential of getting a charging station.

Computers not connecting to internet

  • Students commented that there are computers that do not connect to the internet.
  • It became apparent that students were unaware how to raise this to a member of IT staff
  • ACTION – Charlotte Hargreaves to raise this with IT, but also request posters to be put up for students explaining how to log a job with IT ACTION COMPLETE - IT have fixed the issues with multiple PCs. One in particular was a faulty PC which has since been swapped with a replacement and returned to their supplier.

Earlier release of module handbooks

  • Students asked if module handbooks could be released earlier, even if it could only be more of a basic outline that might be subject to change, including the reading list so that they can get ahead with reading and preparing for lecturers. Another student said that their course already do this and it was really well received and helpful.
  • It was highlighted by staff that these are already available in the module description which has an overview and book list.
  • Students commented that this is in a completely different section on UDo and they need it all in one place. They also said that the module description does not have the timeline and that is something that would be particularly helpful for a lot of students.
  • Students and staff commented that it would need to be made clear that the document was a working document and subject to change.
  • Charlotte Hargreaves and David Patton saw that this would be useful and couldn’t see it being a problem to implement. ACTION – David and Charlotte to work on implementing this.

Modules missing on Blackboard

  • Student raised an issue she had had where modules she had selected were not available, then when they were made available others disappeared.
  • It was noted that this had been an issue on another course also.
  • ACTION – Cheryl to speak to online enrolment to prevent in future. UPDATE: Rachel Thomas is currently investigating the issues identifies with modules in online enrolment.

Printing Joint Honours timetable showing both courses

  • A student raised the issue that Joint Honours students could not view both timetables together
  • Cheryl Stephens said that they have introduced a search functionality this year which means that you should be able to see them together.
  • ACTION COMPLETE – Cheryl has been in contact with the student directly to resolve this issue.

Unable to get emails

  • One student raised an issue regarding being unable to receive any emails on their unimail account. They have raised this with IT but it has not been solved.
  • ACTION COMPLETE – Cheryl has contacted Joel Klaff to investigate this further.

Spam emails

  • Students reported receiving spam emails to their unimail account. They discussed that there is a good process to follow for reporting them but they don’t seem to be stopping.
  • ACTION COMPLETE – Cheryl Stephens has contacted the IT team. They are looking into the issue but they would also like to attend the next OFGS forum to clarify the details and address the matter. They also gave the links relating to guidance and the reporting of phishing emails:?

Recording lectures on Panopto

  • Students said that there was a new lecturer who had not been trained on Panopto yet, and so hadn’t recorded any sessions
  • ACTION – David Patton to pick that up with lecturer.

Developing a sense of community at OFGS

  • Students raised that they did not feel part of a community at OFGS. Students were keen on events like quizzes, board game sessions, and mindfulness activities, not related to work, and wanted something a bit different.
  • Staff highlighted that this should be student-led and students agreed.
  • ACTION – Scarlet Moss to email students about this, and to involve both Chris Meynall and Charlotte Hargreaves in terms of implementation.
  • World Mental Health Day and World Book Day were discussed as additional events. For World Book Day students and staff are invited to dress up as their favourite book character and donate money to Student Minds.
  • Charlotte Hargreaves also highlighted the idea of conducting a site induction for new students, where current students induct new students. Students in the forum were very supportive of this idea.
  • David Patton highlighted the new social science hub blog as potentially a good way for students to promote extra events.
  • Charlotte Hargreaves also highlighted the progression event at OFGS, where students can have an informal chat about masters offerings. Pizza will also be provided!
  • ACTION – Cheryl Stephens to promote.
  • ACTION – Charlotte Hargreaves to pass details to Stephanie Groves/Scarlet Moss to be promoted through Union social media.

Gender neutral toilets

  • Student said that other students have raised issues with this.
  • ACTION – Scarlet Moss to email student regarding this to discuss.


Stephanie Groves
9:47am on 5 Mar 19 Thanks Ellen, it was a great turn out and the feedback you all gave was really valuable. Updates from the university are coming in fast so I'll keep this article updated! The issue with the bins has already been solved :)
Ellen Hicken
4:11pm on 1 Mar 19 It was ace to have students from a broad range of courses at this forum and I want to thank the union for organising this and thank everyone who came.
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