Sabbs Update – 19/04/2024

Ed Brooker, Union President

Hello everyone!

I hope you have had a fantastic break and are feeling well-rested as we enter the final term of the year, and more importantly – Varsity!

While you have been gone, I have been working on trying to get as many of you to register to vote in local elections as I possibly can! While the deadline to register for locals has now closed, please stay tuned as we prepare for an upcoming General Election. As well as this, to enhance our civic engagement, the Sabbs and I had a meeting with the new Leader of Southampton City Council to talk about how we can work with them in the future!

I have had a few catch-up meetings all related to upcoming student experience projects, including the Halls Experience Board (to do exactly what it says on the tin), Sustainability Education (relating to Goal 4 of the University’s Sustainability strategy to embed sustainability into every course) and Collection Discovery and Development (relating to the movement of books within Hartley Library to a separate site). If you want more details on any of these or have any ideas, please reach out! It was also time for the University Council’s strategic away day this week. So I (as well as members of the University Exec and Council) went off-campus for a lengthy meeting and discussed where we want the University to be in the long term. It also involved comparing ourselves in the wider HE sector, talking about the University’s growth and our wider role in the city of Southampton. It was an incredibly interesting couple of days!

Finally, it was also the monthly meeting of the University’s Sustainability Implementation Group this week. We had updates against each of the six sustainability goals outlined in the strategy, as well as updates from each of the faculties, iSolutions and professional services. I delivered a SUSU update, where I spoke about an upcoming All Student Vote relating to divestment from fossil fuels, going live next week! I also raised several issues that students have told me about, and hopefully, we will see progress on them soon. Lastly, I spoke about Green Week (next week!), we have many informative lectures and fun activities planned all based around living more sustainable lives, please see here for a full programme!

I cannot wait to see you all at Varsity next week, and see you bring home yet another trophy for Team Southampton!

Rebecca Would, VP Education and Democracy

Welcome back from the break! I hope you’ve had a chance to relax and recover, as well as preparing your assignments or taking on part-time work, or placements within your degree. 

Over the break I have fed into the University’s plans for communication in several areas, such as what automatic emails will look like from MyEngagement next year and how students can be told about a new skills self-assessment coming to MyCareer in the new year. I have also been thinking about how SUSU better communicates about, promotes and celebrates representation throughout the year. 

We are coming up to award season, so this has meant I’ve spent a lot of time preparing for and shortlisting for the Academic Awards in May (including designing my own outfit for it at home!), and it has been wonderful to see how fantastically your reps and staff have been supporting your academic interests on Thursday 2nd May! 

The next 2 weeks are very busy within SUSU and for me, with Green Week, Varsity, visiting officers from other Russell Group SUs, Advancing Assessments meetings, several 2 hour meetings, and the reconvened AGM! Register now to approve SUSU’s affiliations, expenditure and accounts!

Amy Moir, VP Activities

Hi everyone, hope you’ve had a good time over the break! It’s been quiet here with no students around so looking forward to you all being back for the last term. Last week, the other sabbs and I caught up with the leader of Southampton City Council to discuss how we at SUSU can work more closely with them in future. I also enjoyed joining the University events team and ambassadors to speak to prospective students and their parents who had come for campus tours (my main role seemed to be giving out sweets). I spent a lot of time working on rewriting the SUSU Expect Respect policy and discussing the future of the SUSU Safe scheme. I have worked on producing guidance videos on how to access and use several important forms, including the Report and Support tool, which I hope will be useful for future committee trainings and general use by students. I met again with the Winchester Violence Against Women and Girls Strategic Group – thank you to all who filled out our safety survey, it will be really helpful for the Police and Council staff based in Winchester.

Finally, I have been very excitedly preparing for the exciting upcoming events, namely Varsity next week and the Student Experience Awards in June. Thanks everyone who nominated for the awards, I am looking forward to choosing the winners. 

See you all back next week for a busy start to the summer term. Lots of love 

Marina Stasi, VP Sports

Welcome back you lovely bunch,

I hope you’ve had the best Easter break and are all hyped up and geared for another Varsity win!

Less than a week to go until we take on Pompey and bring home another trophy so make sure to purchase your tickets via Box Office. Kind reminder that your last chance to collect your t-shirts will be Friday 26 April at 3pm from the Locker.

I love to admit that you have made mine and the committee’s lives extremely difficult with over 300 exceptional nominations for Team Southampton Sport Awards. Can’t wait to see you all at St. Mary’s Stadium on Friday 10th of May to celebrate all your achievements and hard work this year. The shortlist of nominees is to be revealed soon so make sure to keep up with our socials. If you have not yet requested your tickets, please do so as soon as possible by emailing sususport@soton.ac.uk.

Over Easter, I have been very busy finalising the outlook of the Sports Pass fee for the next three years. The final proposal has been circulated to your Club Captains and Presidents and I hope to get back to you with more updates very soon. We have decided to extend the Sports Pass partial refund form for those eligible to Sunday 28 May so please make sure to submit your details on time via this form if you purchased the Sports Pass in Autumn 2023. The Head of Communities and I will be going live on @team_soton Instagram page at some point next week for a Sports Pass Q&A, so make sure to keep an eye out!

You should have received your Grant Round 3 responses by now, most of which unfortunately had to be rejected due to the limited amount of funds. We have prioritised teams that have not had any entries funded or needed travel for BUCS so for anything else I would strongly encourage you to reapply in Grant Round 1 next year, where our budget will have reset and we may be able to offer further support.

Last but not least, rumour has it there’s a fun burger-eating competition taking place in The Bridge from April 29 – May 3, hosted by your favourite Sabb Team, so sign up to earn full bragging rights!

I’ll be seeing you around at Varsity fixtures next week. Until then, stay hyped and #BleedBurgundy 🙂

You Make Change Updates

The break has been a quiet time for YMC, but we have managed to close a few off. The flowers near Burgess Road were cleared to sow some new wildflower seeds that will be great for biodiversity over summer; and we have had several requests for different drinks in the Stags! We have an annual survey that goes out at the end of the year asking for what drinks you want so get ready to share your thoughts then!

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