What is an Elected Officer?

It’s that time again! Elections season is coming up, and everyone - yes, you! - gets a chance at voting for a fresh new round of Elected Officers.

  • Posted Wed, Feb 8, 2023 3:34 PM

This might beg the question, or a few. What is an Elected Officer? What do they do? And why should I care, or vote for them? We anticipated all of these questions in advance, and put a handy little article together for you.

What is an Elected Officer? What do they do?

Elected Officers are what they say on the tin - people who are elected in, by you, to represent different areas of the Union. Any student is welcome to run, though it is a full time role, and you’ll need to take a year out of your studies. Luckily, you get paid - to the tune of £20,500 a year.

Officers generally come in five flavours;

Learning Experience - Learning Experience officers look after educational representation and key learning experiences. They are the Union’s point of contact for liaising with academic and external partners, and student’s first point of contact for potential feedback. The Learning Experience officer leads academic campaigns, and works closely with the University for potential further development.

Welfare - Welfare Officers keep an eye on student welfare, such as mental health and wellbeing. They work closely with the University to ensure the best possible environment for student welfare, as well as liaising with external clients. The Welfare Officer wants to make sure the University is a safe and welcoming place for everyone, whatever life throws at them.

Democracy and Campaigns - The Democracy and Campaigns Officer looks after the democratic functions of the Union. They sit on the Student Council, as well as overseeing Have Your Say and the Student Network. The Democracy and Campaigns officer works closely with the University’s Local Community Partnership links, as well as being a leading activist and campaigner.

Student Development - The Student Development Officer looks after the University’s developmental areas. They work closely with the Groups team, as well as volunteering and training opportunities, and occasionally within the remit of sports and activities. The Student Development Officer is the first point of contact to ensure that student services within the University run smoothly.

Academic Representation - The Academic Representation Officer works with representative services, such as Course and Faculty Reps. While the Learning Experience Officer may work more closely with the educational side of the student experience, the Academic Representation Officer works with academic campaigns, as well as strengthening University partner relations, in order to ensure student’s needs are met.

Lovely bunch, eh?

Why should I care? Or vote for them?

While each Elected Officer has a very specific job description (see above!), they may want to manifest this in different ways. Some officers may have different ideas about how they can do the job compared to others, and some may make different promises - this is part of their manifesto, which is sort of a big plan, detailing all the stuff they’ll do if you elect them.

Some people’s manifestos may appeal to you more than others - perhaps someone running for Student Development Officer wants to do loads of stuff with sports, and the others aren’t that keen. If you do a lot of sports, and think their ideas are good ideas, you’d want to vote for that person.

It doesn’t have to be a particularly big change, but sometimes little things that make life easier, or make the student experience better, make all the difference.

This sounds like something I want to do!

Great! You can nominate yourself here. Nominations close on the 24th of February.

If you’d rather not, that’s okay. Feel free to send the form to a friend, if you think they’d be interested - or watch this space for further information about campaigns and voting.

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