News Article

President's Updates: One Last Roar, Council, Student Representation and Collective Action

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Hey all, it's been a while, so I thought I would pull out a few key themes of things I have been up to. As President, I often have to deal with more of the bureaucracy than the other officers, such as recruitment of a new Lay Trustee (see the other blog I have next week on KCLSU governing structures + who lay trustees are) or the recruitment of KCL’s Vice Principal Education (I just did two student focus groups on what students would like to see in this).I've also been working on:

One Last Roar:

Working with students to put on an amazing series of (hopefully in person!) events 21st-25th June. We have internal KCLSU meetings to plan but also have a number of students who are amazing people who give up their time to help us with our ideas but plan their own.

Student Representation on Council:

Atm I am the only student on the uni highest governing body, ridiculous I know, considering our tuition fees fund this uni but such is life. I am trying to get a second student on the Council so I submitted a paper to the Governance and Nominations Subcommittee. That was rejected. But that is ok because I will have an even better paper that I am preparing in June. I want the second student member to be the KCLSU VP Postgraduates in order to represent the needs of our postgraduate students (who actually make up 50% of our population which I did not know till I got this job). I would love it to be my legacy that I manage to get a 2nd member on before I leave so we can improve the whole student experience at the highest decision-making body.

Lay Trustee Recruitment:

As a quick summary, KCLSU is governed by 14 trustees. Six elected sabbatical officers, 4 elected student trustees in October – all of whom are elected on single-year terms. The Chair of the Board is the President of KCLSU. Our lay trustees are recruited to provide their external expertise. Currently, we have 3:

  1. Sonika: Chair of HR Subcommittee, Vice-Chair of the Board
  2. Julie: Former Chief Finance Officer at BT, Chair of Audit, Risk Committee, and Chair of Digital and Communications
  3. Naz: Head of Charities at Barclays, Chair of Performance Subcommittee

I just finished the round of recruitment for Naz and we are currently recruiting for a Chair of our Governance and Policy Subcommittee (which is the one we had this week that Naz kindly chaired). Shameless plug: if you know anyone with a governance/legal background please pass the link on and encourage them to apply.

In this body of work, we talk to students from our representative networks to understand what students want from a Lay Trustee. We also coordinate a lot of bureaucratic nightmares in this but the big-ticket items which take time are the interviews and reading CVs. Who would have thought that at 23 years old, in my first adult job, I would be leading on recruitment? Being an officer is a fantastic opportunity (another shameless plug for you to run for officer next year…)

Uniting SUs for collective action

There have been a number of issues that I think have required collective action over the past year, due to King’s being King’s, and I have been coordinating the Russell Group SUs in particular. In fact, our most effective meeting was one where we jointly coordinated our statement that highlighted the need for the Russell Group universities to provide a safety net.

Hope that this has given you a bit of an idea of a handful of stuff that I do every day, as always feel free to email me: [email protected]

Salma