Jacob Skipper analyses Thomas Stoker's manifesto for SRC VP Education following their interview.
Thomas Stoker is a Common Law and Philosophy student, who was previously a class representative and founder of a “social ecology” society, which believes in environmental protection through a sustainable society. This is an issue he wishes to promote at the Students' Representative Council (SRC), alongside improved minority representation and accessibility for students with disabilities or mental health issues.
A former class rep, he believes that the position should be elected across the university – many are currently picked by faculty – and that students should be able to anonymously raise issues to them so that it’s easier to bring up personal issues.
Building on this, he wants greater study and exam support: Continued lecture recording across the whole university after lockdown ends, and introducing a “Peer-Assisted Learning Scheme” across all schools so that freshers (and others) can get support from senior students – especially important to combat isolation during lockdown.
He believes that these will improve the accessibility of studying for students with disabilities, mental health issues, or family problems. He also proposes improving and varying exam provisions to the specific needs of disabled students, some of whom may be struggling with longer exams.
The SRC currently has nine “Welfare and Equal Opportunities Officers” for minority or social issues, which Thomas wants to expand so that there are minority reps for every year and school – this should make reps more accessible to bring forward concerns, but this would increase the total number of SRC positions by at least 25 to nearly 70.
He adds that he wants to work towards affiliating the SRC with the National Union of Students (NUS) Scotland, which he believes will give students a larger voice with which to express their concerns. This idea has been brought up often with votes last held in 1992 and 2006, the most recent vote being 93% against. There is a financial implication – there’s an annual affiliation fee to pay.
Voting opens at 9am on 3 March and closes at 5pm on 4 March. You can vote here or on the UofG Life app.
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