This week AberSU Full time Officers and staff attended the national NUS Students Unions 2018 Conference and NUS Awards at the Birmingham NEC.
The NUS Awards are an annual celebration of the extraordinary work which students’ unions undertake each day whilst reflecting on the standout stories and achievements of the past year and this year.
The People Award ‘recognises students’ unions that have strengthened their commitment to their people and actively demonstrated principles of equality, diversity and inclusion’
AberSU has been working hard over the last 2 years to develop a positive people culture, boost satisfaction and to develop as an employer in a number of ways:
- Staff structures, roles and payscales were reviewed to ensure fairness, sustainability and appropriate staffing support for all aspects of the organisation
- Staff and Officers have received training to develop knowledge and skills in working in a democratic organisation and to build awareness of diversity and liberation
- Staff wellbeing is supported with a dedicated employee assistance programme and all staff can access 2 wellbeing hours a week to spend on wellbeing activity such as going to the gym, swimming, reading, walking or chatting with a brew
- All staff are consulted and involved in all major SU activity and strategy
The Democracy Award ‘recognises students’ unions that have demonstrated and strengthened their commitment to democratic principles’
Building a more positive and engaging representation and democratic culture where students shape the Students’ Union and the University has a been a priority for AberSU – there is a shared understanding that the organisation is still on a journey of development and that there is work yet to do, but this Award recognises the hard work of staff and Officers to fulfil a strategic promise to give students the last word in a number of ways:
- A new strategy has been developed after extensive consultation with students in 2016 to guide all SU work.
- All staff now work to ensure that elections and democratic forums are more accessible resulting in record levels of candidates and a doubling of election turnout - 40% of students have been engaged in SU democracy in at least one way his academic year.
- Close and collaborative working with University staff to develop structures and support around course and subject level representation
Bruce Wight, AberSU President said: “I feel incredibly lucky to be part of the team and these rewards are a true reflection of all the hard work that has gone in to this year, we are an Aber family and we are growing"
Trish McGrath, AberSU CEO said: “I would like to thank and congratulate all students, Union staff and University staff that have worked hard and supported each other to improve our organisation. We really do believe in our strategic vision of Aber students loving student life and being ready for anything and these awards area great milestone for us on our journey of continuous development”