7 huge updates from Student Summit

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A student rep speaking into a microphone at Rep Conference

The Ideas Forum is a place where you can submit any idea for change about your university experience or vote and comment on existing ideas. If you can get at least 25 other students to vote for your idea, the Union officers are then able to consider it. In the past few months there have hundreds of ideas and thousands of votes which have resulted in several ideas getting passed - you can see all of the items which have been passed. Below is an update in what your Union of Students has been doing to action or campaign for the seven items which were passed at the recent Student Summit.

  1. Mandatory mental health training for all staff (also available to students) – 98 votes for, 21 votes against.
    The University has recently proposed that “to equip the whole university to respond to mental health concerns and improve the communities’ ability to signpost effectively, we deliver a whole Institution Mental Health training programme”. The Union, particularly Samira Mensah, vpwelfare@derbyunion.co.uk will continue to work with the university, including Bev Millinchip (Organisational Development Manager), to ensure this is achieved including requesting statistics in how many staff are trained. ‘Love your mate’ training has been provided for programme reps and student-led services with around 20 trained so far and plans for more events in the New Year.
  2. A wellbeing room/adviser in every campus and halls - 58 votes for, 57 votes against.
    Samira Mensah, vpwelfare@derbyunion.co.uk is liaising with Jo Jones the University’s Student Services Manager and will be linking to her work on student isolation. Melanie Welaratne vpeduction@derbyunion.co.uk  will focus on support at from halls and is meeting with Ollie Shearer, Director of Derby Student Residences Ltd (DSRL) in January with a view to better understanding the Resident Assistant role and how this may be incorporated. As stated above improvements in mental health training are planned which will support this.
  3. First Aid and Mental Health Training for Health Care Students – 95 votes for, 19 votes against.
    Bill Whitehead the Deputy Dean of the College of Health and Social Care has been contacted with the results of the vote and the suggestion he meet with Jade Nixon, PTO (Allied Health & Social Care) ahsc.officer@derbyunion.co.uk who initially suggested the idea. Once they have met Jade will update with the support of union staff and full time officers.
  4. Childcare Facilities for Student Parents – 81 votes for, 37 votes against.
    Kellyann Greening Part Time Officer (Student Parents) parents.officer@derbyunion.co.uk will work on this including research local provision at present. She will be supported by laura.maher@derbyunion.co.uk and Samira Mensah vpwelfare@derbyunion.co.uk who has gathered some research on this. The universities’ Head of Estate Development Andrew Bevan has been contacted and there are discussions about how a local nursery may provide hourly drop-ins.
  5. Placement Allocation in Health and Social Care/Education – 98 votes for, 17 votes against.
    Kimberley Chadbourne, Part Time Officer for Social & Community Studies scs.officer@derbyunion.co.uk, and David.lochtie@derbyunion.co.uk  Student Voice and Development Manager met with Paul Reed, Snr Lecturer in Practice and Work-based Learning and looked at the issue in depth including all the challenges and complexities – a full report on this will come out in the New Year. It was agreed that Kimberley would meet once again with Paul. Items that may be considered in follow-up meetings may include procedural and communications improvements, campaigning to University Executive for further funds, campaigning in wider sector to improvements to local government, alternative solutions and gathering wider feedback on placements? Module Evaluation Form type feedback
  6. Blackwell's voucher for masters students – 114 votes for, 4 votes against.
    Dani Quill, president@derbyunion.co.uk,  has been meeting with the Vice Chancellor, Dean of Students and SAGE (Student and Graduate Experience) to review the Blackwell’s card. She is  in the process of gathering feedback to understand more on how it’s spent, who is eligible to get one and is it catering for our students need and parity of experience. The needs of Master’s students will be considered within this – there appears to be a great appetite for it. Dani will be writing a paper to push the wants and needs of students to make sure the card is reflective of what our student’s needs.
  7. Car Share Buddy System – 64 votes for, 50 votes against.
    Melanie Welaratne vpeducation@derbyunion.co.uk will be leading, but Dani Quill has attended a meeting where this was explored further. The proposal has been picked up by Louise Pigden, Deputy Dean, College of Engineering and Technology, and the Estates Departmentas they are keen to do a staff buddy share scheme also. The provider www.liftshare.com/uk are coming to the university to present and Rachel Horswell commuters@derbyunion.co.uk to be invited and involved.

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