11.00 - 12.30pm: Workshops

Students' Unions and Student Life in the UK, Ireland and the US

Location: Concourse Suite 27

The structure, leadership and variety of programs/services offered by Students Unions vary widely from campus-to-campus and from country-to-country, however they all share one common purpose, to facilitate and encourage student engagement. This workshop will provide an overview of higher education, union management and student life in the US, Ireland and the United Kingdom.  The session will highlight our differences, but most importantly the similarities that bring us together.  

 

(For professionals)

 

Links to Quality Students’ Unions descriptor:

  • Context

 

Workshop Presenters:

  • Dave Barnes - Director of University Unions, James Madison University, Virginia, US
  • Una Redmond - Manager, Students Union & Office of Student Life, Dublin City University, Ireland
  • Ben Vulliamy - Chief Executive, University of York Students’ Union

 

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Overcoming the barriers to engagement for 'commuter students'

Location: Gallery Seminar Suite 1

This sessions looks at The Student Engagement Partnership's (TSEP) large scale research project into the experiences of ‘commuter students’, run in conjunction with Professor Liz Thomas. The study recognised that ‘commuter students’, who live away from the University or College and travel to attend, may experience challenges in relation to their engagement both in and beyond the classroom. It sought to explore how these issues are experienced by students and institutions, and what can be done to improve engagement and student outcomes. In this participatory workshop we will share the findings from our research, which was conducted through working with nine institutions and student peer researchers across England, and present case studies of successful approaches and tools.

 

(For student officers and those new to the movement)

 

Links to Quality Students’ Unions descriptors:

  • Participation
  • Representation and campaigning

 

Workshop Presenters:

  • Hannah Goddard - Student Engagement Consultant, NUS

 

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How should Students’ Unions approach Satellite Campuses, Online Learners and Trans National Education (or who the hell are our members)? 

Location: Concourse Suite 23

Universities increasingly entrepreneurial approach to delivering education throws up some big challenges for Students’ Unions from academic support to governance. In this show and tell session there will be some case studies from Students’ Unions wrestling with these problems, but we want to hear your stories of how you are supporting students who aren’t at your main campus or potentially even in the same country.

 

(For professionals)

 

Links to Quality Students’ Unions descriptors:

  • Representation and Campaigning
  • Participation

 

Workshop Presenters:

  • Sarah Ellis - CEO, Wrexham Glyndwr Students'  Union
  • John Abell - General Manager, Coventry University Students’ Union

 

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A principled approach to measuring, developing and evaluating learner voice practice

Location: Gallery Seminar Suite 2

The Learner Voice Framework offers space for a shared understanding of what learner voice is and what effective learner voice looks like – a scaffolding for a consistent and sustainable approach to learner voice that is driven by values. This session is an introduction to the framework to explore the secret behind the principles that enable institutions to work in partnership with Students’ Unions to review and enhance their learner voice practice.

 

(For student officers and those new to the movement)

 

Links to Quality Students’ Unions descriptors:

  • Representation and Campaigning
  • Review and Evaluation

 

Workshop Presenters:

  • Jen Hope - Development Manager, NUS

 

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Housing and Energy

Location: Concourse Suite 30

Ensuring students live in homes fit for study 60% of students report living in a home with damp, mould or condensation while they study.  Evidence suggests that this can have a significant impact on their mental and physical wellbeing.  This session will outline the latest findings from NUS’ Homes fit for study national research, and support delegates to work together to identify potential solutions to housing and energy-related challenges they face locally. Delegates will learn from the experiences of other unions, share successes and form connections that enable them to continue to address these issues after the conference.

 

(For professionals)

 

Links to Quality Students’ Unions descriptors:

  • Context
  • Representation and Campaigning

 

Workshop Presenters:

  • Rachel Drayson - Insight Manager, NUS 
  • Neil Jennings - Programme Manager - Student Switch Off, NUS

 

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Access All Areas

Location: Gallery Seminar Suite 3

The following session will explore disability access within Students’ Union services, using examples in sports/societies and how to make services as accessible as possible. The session will lead to an open discussion on making student opportunities more accessible for students with a range of disabilities. The idea is for a number of Students’ Unions to come together and discuss, share and collaborate on different ideas in order to develop good practice for students. Any scenarios, suggestions or other ideas from real world situations, club and other institutions would be welcome in order to put together a picture of what is there to be dealt with.

 

(For student officers and those new to the movement)

 

Links to Quality Students’ Unions descriptor:

  • Context
  • Participation

 

Workshop Presenters:

  • Sam Lewis - Sports Coordinator, Coventry University Students' Union
  • Tom Daly - Sports Coordinator, Warwick University Students’ Union
  • Becky Cameron – Head of Membership Engagement, University of Derby Students’ Union

 

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Creating and mobilising Active Citizens

Location: Gallery Seminar Suites 14 & 15

Exploring how SU’s can create high quality opportunities for members to volunteer not only in the local communities but across the world, by linking to international initiatives at the UN, EU, WEF, INCS etc.

 

(For professionals)

 

Links to Quality Students’ Unions descriptors:

  • Relationships and Partnerships
  • Participation

 

Workshop Presenters:

  • Amar Abbas - CEO, Salford Students’ Union
  • Kit Byford, British Council World Programme TBC

 

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Collaborative approaches to building confidence & resilience through sport

Location: Gallery Seminar Suites 16 & 17

This session will share best practice from This BUCS Girl Can activity across the HE sector, highlighting transferable learning which can be applied on campuses all over the country. Reflecting on how Universities have developed campaigns and targeted opportunities to engage inactive students in sport and physical activity, the workshop will also discuss how you can strive to enhance collaboration across your institution and beyond, as you seek to develop confidence, resilience and belonging within your Students’ Union.

 

(For student officers and those new to the movement)

 

Links to Quality Students’ Unions descriptors:

  • Participation
  • Relationships and Partnerships

 

Workshop Presenters:

  • Ben Jessup - Development Coordinator, BUCS
  • James Bramley - BUCS Intern 2016/17, BUCS

 

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Commercial for Officers

Location: Concourse Suites 19 & 20

What are the key commercial questions officers should be able to ask their Commercial teams to ensure they are maximising contribution/surplus for their Unions to support their activities?

Through this session delegates with gain an understanding of how to deliver the best commercial performance in their Union, and the questions to challenge their commercial teams to ensure they are maximising contribution/surplus & working with NUS compliantly.

 

Links to Quality Students’ Unions descriptor:

  • Services
  • Review and Evaluation

 

Workshop Presenters:

  • Darren Clarke - President Elect Staffordshire Students' Union, NUS Direction and Oversight Board Chair, NUS Services Board Member
  • Lynn King - Trading Support Director, NUS

 

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When you're in the thick of it; making sense of press and PR

Location: Concourse Suites 21 & 22

When you're in the thick of it; making sense of press and PR in Students' Unions. The student movement gets some great, and some not so great, media coverage. To deal with it effectively it's time we were all a little bit less Malcolm. This session will cover techniques and tips to deal with press and media crises and engaging with local media effectively. We will also be launching a new network for Students' Union staff with responsibilities for press and PR to support skills development and best practise sharing. This session is suitable for any SU staff member directly responsible for press and PR and senior leaders who take on this function.

 

Links to Quality Students’ Unions descriptor:

  • Communication

 

Workshop Presenters:

  • Katie Shaw - PR and Campaigns Manager, NUS
  • Annie Bell - Press Officer, NUS
  • Holly Townsend - Press Coordinator, NUS

 

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Insights in supporter insight from the National Trust

Location: Concourse Suites 28 & 29

The National Trust is one of the UK’s most recognisable brands and for over a decade has been using audience segmentation to better understand its 4.2 million members, deliver its strategy and grow its supporter base. Andrew McLaughlin, Chief Executive of The SU at the University of Bath, has recently joined the students’ union movement from the National Trust where, as Assistant Director of Communications in the Trust’s head office and then as General Manager at the ‘front line’ of Kingston Lacy in Dorset, he has developed a unique perspective on how supporter insight has been a major success story in the growth of one of the country’s most successful charities. 

 

Links to Quality Students’ Unions descriptors:

  • Context
  • Communication
  • Services

 

Workshop Presenters:

  • Andrew McLaughlin - Chief Executive, University of Bath Students’ Union 
  • Lynne Saxby - Assistant Director (Marketing and Research), NUS

 

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An Employer Brand for the Student Movement

Location: Concourse Suites 31 & 32

The session will introduce the newly developed employer brand for the student movement. The new brand has been developed collaboratively by students' unions and brand experts Spencer du Bois. The brand has been created with the objective of positioning students' unions as go-to employers, attracting diverse and outstanding people to the huge range of employment and volunteer roles available. You'll leave this workshop with the knowledge and tools to tailor the new employer brand and messaging options for your Students' Union.

 

Links to Quality Students’ Unions descriptors:

  • People
  • Communication

 

Workshop Presenters:

  • Avarina Wilson-Dyer-Gough - Research and Strategy Consultant, Spencer du Bois 
  • Jenni Bacon – Head of Brand Insight, Spencer du Bois
  • Jacqui Clements – CEO, Warwick Students’ Union
  • Samantha Budd – CEO, University of Bristol Students’ Union

 

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