Reporter


Four schools at the University of Glasgow are electing a sole representative to represent their students at the SRC student council.

The SRC is holding by-elections for one representative from four different schools at the University, here we look at the candidates and provide a review and analysis. 

School of Medicine, Dentistry and Nursing Representative

Deema Al-Obaidly

Running for the Medicine, Dentistry and Nursing Representative position, Deema is a fourth year medical student with a wealth of first-hand experience of the problems that healthcare students face. Her organised manifesto reflects her attitude, and she is keen to ensure that student support will be delivered promptly and when needed throughout the ongoing pandemic. 

With a passionate focus on mental health and wellbeing, Deema hopes to form close working relationships with students from across the Schools. She plans to start up monthly “check-ins”, wherein students will have the opportunity to flag up any worries or concerns, from Covid-19 to personal problems, as well as “de-stressing events” nearer exam time.  

In her manifesto, Deema discusses the importance of communication and she hopes to ease and encourage dialogue between students and their class reps. In that vein, her summarising and dissipating of any important University changes - plentiful this year as a result of Covid-19 - will help make clearer the welfare options available to students. Deema believes that student feedback is crucial for improvement: her own student experience has stoked her interest in securing and maintaining financial compensation for placements, and she is keen to ensure that no student falls through the net. 

Ashley Smith

Ashley Smith is a fourth year nursing student running for the position of SRC Medicine, Dentistry and Nursing Representative. With glowing reports of her kind-hearted personality and ability to lend a hand on both a personal and academic level, Ashley believes that her vast University experience so far puts her in a prime position to enable a flow of communication between the Medicine, Dental and Nursing Schools. 

She believes that being from the smallest faculty, she has the advantage of putting across authentic ideas and ensuring representation for the Nursing School. Of the opinion that all subject areas share common interests and concerns, Ashley is keen to utilise her contacts across the Schools to ensure that even in this pandemic, student welfare remains a top priority. 

Her experience is plentiful; she has volunteered as a freshers’ helper for two years running and has already spent time being a part of the SRC in the Raising and Giving committee. She is confident working within the council and has gained valuable insight into its procedures in previous years. 

School of Modern Languages and Culture Representative

Crystel Astorga Cisneros

Crystel is a fifth year Business Management and Italian student applying for the position of the SRC School of Modern Languages and Culture Representative. With her years of experience in the School, Crystel is confident in her personal understanding of the issues students face throughout University. 

With a particular interest in the Year Abroad Programme stemming from her own jaded experience two years prior, Crystel is determined to ensure smooth communication between home and host university, with the aim to both prevent and best handle the myriad of complications that can arise. She is passionate about ensuring students have an enjoyable time abroad, as she enthused throughout her manifesto about the value of being immersed in an entirely different culture. Crystel is a strong advocate for the programme, however, realises the stress and concerns that may arise this year particularly. 

It is not only the Year Abroad Programme that will be affected by the pandemic: Crystel expresses a strong interest in promoting communication between lecturers and their students as teaching moves online. A supporter of last academic year’s “No Detriment Policy”, she is firm about her own determination to keep this rule in place to ensure that no students are left disadvantaged in these uncertain times. 

Helen Manson

Studying French, Spanish and Russian, Helen Manson is immersed in the Languages, and is eager to become the SRC School of Modern Languages and Culture Representative. Having first-hand experience of the Year Abroad Programme in Russia, alongside her work as an intern translator during her virtual semester abroad, Helen believes that these experiences set her in good stead for the job role. 

Her well-organised manifesto describes how she plans to engage with class representatives from across both the Languages departments and their year groups to ensure that students gain positive experiences from the transition to online teaching. Helen wants to ensure a steady flow of communication regarding exams and new guidance for the Year Abroad Programme. 

Holding the position of the Academic and Cultural Rep in the Hispanic Society, Helen is extremely enthusiastic about the promotion of University-based language-related societies, especially towards new first-years, as she believes strongly in developing a range of non-academic interests to the benefit and enhancement of student life. 

School of Life Sciences Representatives

Denver Correia

An enthusiastic Immunology second year student, Denver is running for the SRC School of Life Sciences Representative position. With a manifesto filled to the brim with ideas and efficiency, Denver’s energy comes across immediately.

He believes in the power of representation and is keen to direct more resources to the benefit of Life Sciences students to help both academically and career-wise. Organisation shining through, Denver plans to create weekly progress trackers for Moodle to ensure students are well-prepared for each week of study and prevent any deadline amnesia. Taking into account the difficulties Sciences students will face when attempting virtual laboratory sessions, Denver aims to push for sufficient “academic prerequisites” to provide students with helpful information to adequately guide them through their studies. 

On top of this, he wants to make sure that lecture slideshows are online at least two days before the lecture. Denver understands how stressful the exam season can be, and pledges to ensure that students are provided with enough revision support, whilst also stating his aims to establish a fruitful dialogue between himself and the class representatives. Alongside academia, Denver has ambitions to encourage more society formation within the School, which he believes will be a strong asset to students by supporting their teaching sessions with relevant activities.

Ameerah Gardee

Ameerah is a second year Neuroscience student applying for the position of SRC School of Life Sciences Representative. Ameerah’s extensive committee experience is undoubtedly responsible for boosting her confidence as a student rep, having held positions including class representative for Biology, president of the Tea Society, and previously, Student Council Representative. 

First-hand experience in organisational and team-working roles has given Ameerah an invaluable breadth of expertise in feeding back student concerns to seniors. Her own online educational experience prior to studying at Glasgow sets her up, she believes, to effectively understand the problems and concerns that may arise with this year’s virtual teaching. 

She plans to ease accessibility of online resources to all students, as well as, more specifically, help to solve issues that have arisen in areas of the School’s Biology curriculum. Ameerah is a strong advocate of thorough feedback and hopes to ensure the concerns of the class representatives are processed effectively. Her own passion for the Life Sciences has filled Ameerah with a drive to ensure that all other students can thoroughly enjoy their time at university too. 

Smilla Huzell

Smilla is a final year Biochemistry student applying for the role of SRC School of Life Science Representative. With great previous experience as a class representative, Smilla is confident in her abilities to feedback student concerns. 

Adamant that students will not be disadvantaged by this year’s circumstances, Smilla firmly believes in the importance of “student voice and opinion”, especially given the new online teaching conditions. Her concise and comprehensive manifesto splits her main priorities into three groups: laboratory work, teaching and support, and the issue of online exams. Smilla aims to creatively explore the possibilities available to students who will miss out on important lab work this year, as well as pledging to try to retain the online 24-hour, open-book exam format for this coming year. 

Besides University work, Smilla is passionate about student welfare and is keen to establish effective and regular communication between herself and the class representatives to ensure that all students have their concerns appropriately listened to. Her explorative mind and caring persona come across in her manifesto, and she is determined to make herself available for the concerns of the Life Sciences students.

School of Education Representative

Jon Hosie

Running uncontested for the SRC School of Education Representative position, Jon Hosie is a Secondary Professional Graduate Diploma in Education student. Jon believes that his extensive freshers’ helper experience makes him an ideal candidate for both catering to and understanding the needs of newcomers to university, whilst his study in a postgraduate degree programme has provided him with valuable insight into the concerns of older students. 

Jon plans to act as a main port of contact and aims to deliver clear and informative advice to all students within the School, as well as maintaining a close relationship with the class representatives. With the change from the in-person university experience to a predominantly internet one, Jon understands the need to continue to put student welfare first and to address concerns quickly and efficiently. 

Passionate about the beneficial role of Glasgow’s campus community, Jon is keen to ensure that Covid-19 will not detrimentally affect the SRC activities, and his previous experience with the student body has emphasised to him the importance of the role. 

You can find manifestos here: https://www.glasgowstudent.net/about/elections/autumn-elections-2020/manifestos/?mf=undefined

Voting will open at 9am on October 15 2020. All registered students can do so at gla.ac.uk/vote


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