Candidate for the position of Student Trustees

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Daniele Cotton

Hi everyone! I’m Daniele, a DPhil Cancer Research student at Green Templeton and I’m hoping to represent you as a Trustee on the Oxford Student Union. I’m passionate about improving the student experience and strengthening our communities. Here’s what I hope to achieve and my relevant experience.


STRONG FEEDBACK LOOPS: I hope to streamline the process for raising compliments and complaints from members to reduce barriers to engagement with the union. This will be done by creating an open form on the union website where community members can submit feedback at any time. We will then publish regular ‘you said, we did’ documents outlining all actions taken in response to feedback. This will allow us to better adhere to legal regulations governing the handling of complaints.

TRANSPARENCY AND ACCOUNTABILITY: I will conduct a review of communication practices employed by the union to ensure the charity’s work is being efficaciously shared with students and stakeholders. In addition, I hope to further improve transparency by providing summaries of the union’s meeting minutes that include all key points and are provided in a variety of accessible formats. This will advance accountability and ensure that the union’s work is truly in students’ best interests.

FISCAL RESPONSIBILITY: I will consult union members to establish strategic priorities for allocation of short- and long-term funding. I will then thoroughly review union finances to ensure our actions are meeting these strategic priorities. I would also ensure that the outcomes of these decisions are clearly communicated to students.

EMPOWERING REPRESENTATIVES: I will investigate methods to better support current and prospective future representatives. This will include a review of welfare support and training provided to current and future representatives to best equip them for their roles. I will also investigate methods to empower students to stand in elections and promote a strong student voice.


I gained experience in student advocacy as Academic Representative at my undergraduate student union. This included serving as the first point of contact for >300 students, lobbying for policy changes and representing students to the union and university in student-staff liaison meetings.

As the 2020-21 ICSM Paediatrics Society President, I managed the organisation’s volunteering, fundraising, academic and mentorship programmes. This role involved ensuring compliance with extensive union and government policies regulating our activities, such as GDPR and safeguarding best practices.

I also have experiencing handling significant fiscal responsibility in my role as Beit Hall Committee President, where I oversaw a budget of tens of thousands of pounds to ensure appropriate and equitable spending. Together, these roles helped me gain the experience and skillset required for the role of Student Trustee.  

I am dedicated to enhancing the student experience, which I’ve pursued as Welfare Officer and Peer Support Coordinator at the GTC Graduate Common Room. I hope to take this further by working at an organisational level to ensure that the union carries out its purpose to create an educational environment governed by fairness and to provide all students an equal opportunity to flourish.