Candidate for the position of A&H Philosophy - SSLC Student Chair

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EMMA FOSTER

Get more for your (extortionate!) fees.

Hi, I am Emma and I would like to agitate for change on your behalf.

Why am I doing this whole thing?

The SSLC is an effective vehicle for improving the department.

Yes, I too, often feel that familiar cynical shudder when I hear the word ‘committee’, many committees seem to say things, but not do things. However, I know from my experience as a Student Rep, the SSLC is pro-active. This is why I am confident my time will not be wasted, when using the SSLC to improve our collective experience of Philosophy at King’s.

I want to make sure our department delivers for us, and future students, because I care about; our enjoyment of, and interaction with philosophy; and secondly the longevity of our department's reputation.  

Why vote for me? 

I have experience in making arguments to achieve change. 

My track-record as a Student Representative : 

  • My proudest and most significant achievement on the SSLC last year was introducing academic prize-giving into the department. This means our department now recognises excellence across all fields of Philosophy and this will help to embolden CVs and/or references for further academic study. I realised there was a dearth of academic prize-giving at King's (perhaps not in Law - no surprise there!) and sought to rectify this. With the enthusiastic agreement of the department, I have transformed the system, into one which systematically awards prizes to the top performing student in each area of Philosophy. There are eight prizes available in first year, one for each module. For second and third year, different areas of philosophy have been grouped, and the highest performing student in that grouping will receive the prize - e.g 'Political Philosophy' and 'Ethics', come under the heading of 'Practical Philosophy' - some of the groupings are still being finalised, but we will be able to award prizes to each year group this academic year. 
  • I pushed for release of first year logic results in March, instead of July.
  • I pushed for better examination resources, including examiner reports and more past-papers, which are now available online.  

Other relevant experience : 

I have worked in Parliament and local constituencies, both on Political Campaigns and for MPs. Specifically, I have worked on Leadership Campaigns for MPs and on the Remain Campaign for Britain to stay in the EU. This type of work demands meeting with focus groups, therefore I am used to collating the opinions of people and trying to make those opinions COUNT for something. 

I competitively debate. I have been selected to represent KCL nationally and internationally, both at the European Championships and the World Championships, and I have won the annual Bristol University Inter-Varisty Debating Competition. This means I am used to being clear, and making strong arguments under time pressure. It also means I have had to think creatively to win arguments and solve problems. 

What about the future?

I have focused more on my past experience here, because I want you to know whatever the case, you are dealing with someone you can trust to lead the SSLC.
However whilst I have lots of ideas for the future, I would want to collate opinions from the students before putting these to the committee.

Here is a rough idea of some things I would raise:

  • Improve the ideas economy of the department by introducing an easier process for students to voice their ideas to the SSLC.
  • Introduce more social events in tandem with the PhilSoc, to simultaneously bring everyone closer and also raise money for teaching Philosophy in prison.
  • Give postgraduates and dual-degree students more of a voice and better resources (I’m an undergraduate but I feel like this is something which needs improving).
  • Finalise all aspects of the prize-giving programme, I previously mentioned. Including making sure this is also rolled out across postgraduate study, where possible.

...
I am committed to inclusivity and hope to make the department as accessible as possible for every student. If you want to chat with me about any of this, please contact me at emma.foster@kcl.ac.uk 

Finally, last year my experience on the SSLC made me realise how responsive, reflective and accommodating our department can be, if you work with it and squeeze it.  It was an absolute joy to act on your behalf as a Student Rep, and I would be honoured to do it as your Chair.