President

The Students' Union President

Hello, I am Augusta Chidinma Nnajiofor and I am your President.

I had the pleasure of being your Vice President Community and Welfare for the 2018/2019 academic year. During that time, I worked diligently to lobby for matters that were important to you. I was devoted to representing you and supporting student campaigns and projects. As your elected PRESIDENT I want to continue to proactively increase student support and engagement and to build a sense of community, positive wellbeing and belonging at UWE Bristol.

 

Click here to see what I’m working to achieve this year and my progress so far.

The Students' Union President's Blog

We are here to represent you!

We know that some of the UWE Bristol student community are not happy with the current university experience. We understand that it is a challenging time for the student community and we want to ensure that your voice is being heard.

 
November update from your Presidents Team

Your Presidents' Team has been working hard to represent the student community to all levels of UWE Bristol. Check out this update from each of them with their progress in November

 
The Students’ Union is here for you during lockdown

With the news on Saturday of a second national lockdown, we know that some of you may be feeling anxious and unsettled, but we want you to know that The Students’ Union is here for you! Our role is to make sure that you have a positive UWE Bristol experience and we will continue to bring our services to you, whether that’s physically or virtually.

 
An update from your Presidents Team

Your Presidents' Team has been working hard to represent the student community to all levels of UWE Bristol. Check out this update from each of them with their progress in October.

 
Lead and Change 2020

This year we took to our screens for five days of virtual training with the NUS Lead and Change conference.

 
 

Contact Augusta

Image of VP for comms and welfare

Augusta's manifesto objectives

 

Introduce exam feedback within relevant programmes.

 

Status: Updated 10/03/20

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1 July 20
Term of Office started
1 Sept 20
We have made the initial contact with the 4 Faculty Directors and we are currently scheduled to meet with the FBL team who have expressed their interest in improving feedback and reducing assessment cluster.
16 Oct 20
I have met with 3 Faculty Directors who have all expressed their keeness in exploring how we could achieve this objective and gain student feedback through the Feedback forums I will be hosting and the Student Consultation panel on what type of feedback students consider good/bad/useful. An exciting partnership project on Assessment and Feedback between The Students Union and the University is in the planning stages and the committe are dur to have their initail meet up this October. The committee will explore how we produce useful feedback/feedforward for assessments.
8 Dec 20
The Students' Union and the University are working in partnership on an Assesssment and Feedback project. The committee are scheduled to meet biweekly and have a balanced staff and student representation. The focus for the next few months as set by the partnership group is on 'Coursework brief', which will help students understand their assessment expectations from their lecturers/markers. In providing valuable and personalised feedback, this group believes this is the first stage which requires a review of briefs from all programmes to identify which students find beneficial and those that require improvement.
10 Mar 21
At the Student Rep Committee, we hosted a feedback session with students focusing on assessment feedback. Highlight from the session included; lack of consistency, more direct feedback (voice or video recording, critiquing but not highlighting how students can perform better in their next assessment and the need for exam feedback). The Assessment and Feedback Partnership project group are working on the feedback received and building this into the future plans for the project group.

Reduce the cluster of assignment deadlines.

 

Status: Updated 10/03/21

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1 July 20
Term of Office started
1 Sept 20
I have contacted the Head of Central Examination Timetabling to discuss this.
16 Oct 20
The 3 Faculty Directors have indicated that assignment cluster is an area they are looking into and I will be raising the objective for the Assessment and Feedback Committee to work with the Faculty Directors to ensure that students are not struggling with clustered assessment submissions.
4 Feb 21
We have received an increased number of student concerns regarding the difficulty in managing workload due to the impact of lockdown. The University Directorate are aware of this and have provided a Communication toolkit for Programme/module leaders to help communicate and personalise the offer for their students. They have also announced that the Programme/module leaders should review the module assessments and ensure that students are only issuing tasks that are critical to their programmes.
10 Mar 21
Students in FBL raised concerns of clustered assessements in January, we have raised this with the Faculty Executives to look into this especially in the planning for the next academic year. This objective has also been raised in other board level meetings.
 

Ensure Panopto lecture recording is available for all modules.

 

Status: Updated 16/10/20

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1 July 20
Term of Office started
1 Sept 20
In light of Covid, all lectures across for all programs should be recorded as the University presents a mixed learning (virtual and physical) approach in this academic year. However, where this may not be done I will expect that students report these so we can support them in looking into it.
16 Oct 20
completed
 

Provide more diverse food options.

 

Status: Updated 16/10/20

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1 July 20
Term of Office started
1 Sept 20
With the support of the Commercial Director, we have been involved in discussions of increasing the food offering for our Bower students. There are also initial conversations to host a few Bristol food stalls on campus which is very positive.
16 Oct 20
Bristol Eats stalls will have presence on Frenchay, Bower and Glenside offering distinct multicultural dishes from October. The stall schedule will vary every week to make sure that students are offered diverse options and have the opportunity to taste the dishes they love right from campus. More options are also being considered at Bower Ashton and student feedback on food offering this year will continue to be sought after and passed across to relevant departments.
 

Organise events that promote the diversity and growth of our students.

 

Status: Updated 08/12/20

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1 July 20
Term of Office started
1 Sept 20
Currently making arrangements towards the events that will be held this academic year as part of Celebrating Black Excellence campaign.
16 Oct 20
Celebrating Black Excellence campaign launched this October and will be running throughout the academic year. I am working with my team to organise events and activities which include live poetry nights, Arts competition, film screenings, talent show, music programme and workshops.
8 Dec 20
The Celebrating Black Excellence campaign Arts competition is running till the end of the first term and we have received a good number of submissions and I am hopeful for more - winners and participants stand a chance to win competitive prices. Our events this year were mostly virtual and the engagement particularly with my Cook Along with VP Education was great. We are partnering with Centre for Music to hold an Amplify programme and other events for during Feel Good week and International Women's week. I still aim to have a physical talent show in the SU Bar and film screening if government guidelines in teaching term 2 permits.
 

Career coaching for International students.

 

Status: Updated 10/03/21

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1 July 20
Term of Office started
1 Sept 20
With the support of the Representation team, I will be collating feedback from the student consultation panel on their expectations from Career Fairs and Employers - the questions for the survey is being drafted at the moment. This feedback will be passed on to the Career and Enterpise team so they are better informed about student needs. VP Education and I have initiated a conversation with the Employability services to understand their current offering and are brainstorming other options that will benefit international students with the right support they need to apply for Tier 2 jobs. Recent information from the Employability team states some of their plans for this academic year which are positive and once all is confirmed, students will be better informed.
16 Oct 20
27 students from the Student Consultation Panel completed the survey on their expectations from the Virtual Careers Fair and this was passed on to the Career and Enterprise team to inform their preparation towards the event.
8 Dec 20
I am scheduled to meet with the Go Global Team leader and other Empyability meeting to discuss our current offering to International students and the partner organisations they work with. I have had meetings with CRCC Asia and Grad Careers Coach who are keen to work with UWE students. This meeting will inform the gaps that exist and how we could partner with other orgnisations to bridge whatever gaps exist within our present offer.
4 Feb 21
I am working with an external organisation called 'Grad Careers Coach' to organise a live session to speak to international students. They offer coaching programmes and workshops and it would be great to bring them to UWE virtually to support international students currently looking for graduate opportunities.
10 Mar 21
We hosted a live webinar with an external organisation 'Grad Careers Coach' and it was well attended with over 50 students. This was recorded and shared with the attendees. We are now working to host a live Q&A session for international students to ask further questions following the sucess of the webinar.
 

Sponsorship guidance for International students.

 

Status: Updated 10/03/21

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1 July 20
Term of Office started
1 Sept 20
With the support of the Representation team, I will be collating feedback from the student consultation panel on their expectations from Career Fairs and Employers - the questions for the survey is being drafted at the moment. This feedback will be passed on to the Career and Enterprise Services team so they are better informed about student needs. VP Education and I have initiated a conversation with the Employability services to understand their current offering and are brainstorming other options that will benefit international students with the right support they need to apply for Tier 2 jobs.
16 Oct 20
I have had an initial meeting with the FET Employer Engagement Officer and discussed how we could support our students. Following up from this meeting, I am scheduled to meet the Employer Engagement team officers from all 4 Faculties this October to run through how we could work to promote our events to students and discuss including employers who offer sponsorship opportunities to these events.
8 Dec 20
I have been in dialogue with memebers of the Career and Enterprise team and I am scheduled to meet the External Relations Project Development Manager to further discuss the Virtal 'Meet the Emplyers Fair' to discuss how we could include Tier 2 sponsor companies and the role we play in working with these comapnies to better inform their reoresentatives on the tier 2 onboarding process for international students. In addition, I have been feeding into the marketing and communication arrangements with the team to help promote wider and Faculty based employability events that take place to increase visibility through SU channels.
4 Feb 21
The Meet the Employers Fair is taking place 10 March using the virtual platform called Handshake. This month I supported the Careers and Entreprise team on the promotional discussion video to help and ensourage students to use the platform. Colleagues in the Careers and Enterprise team have noted that they would work to involve Tier 2 sponsorship employers for the fair to support international students looking to work in the UK. The team have included the question on being a sponsorship employer on their registration survey and when the delve into the data in a few months, they would be able to confirm the number of sponsorship employers involved in the fair
10 Mar 21
I worked with the Careers and Enterprise team to promote the Meet the Employers Fair taking place on Handshake platfrom. These was a pre-recorded meeting with the Head of Universities Partnership and other students and was promotes across the University's channelI am supporting the University's HR team to run a session with Paul Olomolaiye for the Meet the Employers Fair. This is aimed at encouraging students to gain an insight to the opportunities at the University and the wider community.
 

Set aside accommodation for students that come through clearing and arrive late.

 

Status: Updated 10/03/21

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1 July 20
Term of Office started
1 Sept 20
Due to covid, the Accommodation team have had to treat applications on a 'first come first serve basis' but from the next academic year they will intend to set aside places for those who come through clearing. The university has also started consultation for their new accomodation plan on campus.
8 Dec 20
I have met with the Accommodation manager who has informed us that in normal circumstances pre-Covid, there will be some rooms available for students who come through clearing so long as there are no long waiting lists so there is reassurance that in the next academic year, if normal operatuions return this will be possible again.
10 Mar 21
On behalf of the Executive team, we have made recommendations for international students and home students to be allocated in halls to encourage cross engagement and interactions with student groups. This would help foster stronger relationships between home and international students and assist students struggling with isolation and loneliness.
 

Host student feedback forums across campuses and championing student views.

 

Status: Updated 10/03/21

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1 July 20
Term of Office started
1 Sept 20
I have scheduled monthly feedback sessions in my calendar that will provide an opportunity for students to have discussions about any concerns they have virtually.
16 Oct 20
Based on review from the Welcome Period, I will be merging the feedback session with Question and Answer sessions. This will be promoted across SU social media channels and website.
8 Dec 20
I facilitated 3 Block Zero Focus groups to dig deeper into students experiences during this period and pull out recommendations for the future. I have scheduled joint biweekly feedback sessions with VP Education for teaching term 2.
10 Mar 21
Jane the VP Education and I are hosting biweekly feedback forums for students and these sessions have been well attended. We are escalating issues raised in these forum to relevant University and Students' Union staff.
 

Improve student wellbeing communication.

 

Status: Updated 04/02/21

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1 July 20
Term of Office started
1 Sept 20
In my communication to students via social media and in person I will be sharing information on how students can seek wellbeing support.
16 Oct 20
I continue to have discussions with departments about how we communicate the wellbeing offering support especially during these challenging times where we expect students seeking additional support.
8 Dec 20
I am scheduled to meet the ITS Head of Development and Strategy and Operations lead in January to discuss the possibility of including health and wellbeing support infomration for students on Blackboard and MyUWE.
04 Feb 21
Following my meeting with the ITS Head of Development and Strategy and Operations Lead this month, I can confirm that the "Student Support Options" has now been added to the Blackboard Modules tab. We also discussed adding wellbeing support information text for assessment announcements in Blackboard and this is awaiting formal confirmation from the Student Academic Services team who have already noted their support. Blackboard is the main platform students use to access academic content and including wellbeing support information through the assessment announcements and module tab is a big step in the right direction. Student support options becomes more visible and it is much easier for students to quickly access all that is available without much hassle. The Strategy and Operations Lead stated that it has taken 5 years to do this so this is a great achievement.
 

Mitigate issues that cause student stress and anxiety.

 

Status: Updated 10/03/21

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1 July 20
Term of Office started
1 Sept 20
I have expressed concerns students have over the mark appeal process and module leaders communication which may sometimes be inaccurate. The SAS team are currently working on the academic survival guide for this academic year and will be commuicating to the SU the right comms to pass to students. I will also be recording videos so students are informed on the right process to go through if they need further clarity on marks and how they can appeal. They also intend to pass information to module leaders to send the right communication to students.
16 Oct 20
Since the start of term, I have encouraged students to make contact to share their concerns. I have contacted the appropriate University staff around teaching, lecture recording, value for money, clear communication and student support concerns that have been brought to my attention to ensure they are addressed promptly.
8 Dec 20
We have been escalating student concerns to relevant managers and Faculty executives to resolve on issues relating to library opening hours, value for money, learning and teaching experience, accommodation issues and no detriment approach. I have been working with the Student and Academic Services team and supporting for an approach on the academic regaulations that does not disadvanatge students. On a positive note, library opening times were extended to support students who use the facility. In addition, we are watching closely non-official channels students express their concerns and feeding back into the value for money statement the University should be communicating over the Christmas period.
4 Feb 21
The pandemic has presented a lot of challenges to students and I am working to lobby the University on the key themes coming up from student concerns. I have had meetings with students leading the safety net petitions and other students and I am glad to say that we have successfully gained a safety net approach that will cover both individual and cohort level. We are watching what the next few weeks would hold in regards to lockdown and students returning to campus but in the meantime students living on campus would have received news about a 6 weeks rent rebate. For students living in private accommodation we are lobbying private landlords to consider a similar step to support their student tenants. We have received positive responses from local MPs who have noted their support to encourage private landlords to offer discounts/contract release for students who require this and their continuous efforts to lobby the government. For international students seeking financial support, we are lobbying the University to ease the eligibility requirements and provide a scheme with adequate funding for this student group. In addition, I continue to escalate student concerns that come to our attention and I am also investigating areas students need extra resource to support their academic commitments. This manifesto objective will continue to be an ongoing one but the safety net measure and rent rebate are positives.
10 Mar 21
I continue to raise student concerns with relevant teams. Students living in private accommodation have shared their concerns of feeling left out and we are pleased that these students are able to access accommodation cost support through the Hardship funds if they are struggling financially to pay their rent during lockdown. Following weeks of negotiation, we are happy to announce that student residents at Phoenix court (a nominated UWE Bristol accommodation) are due to receive a total of £40k in rebate after reports of lack of essential hot water service provision. We are working with stakeholders that support International students in various capacities to provide recommendations on how we continue to improve our support to these student group.

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