Hi, my name is Aaliyah and I want to represent the students at the University of Oxford at the NUS national conference. I am committed to the following 5 aims:
- Free Education and Reduced Fees for international students: It is vital the NUS fights to scrap tuition fees for students – this is an even more prominent concern given the current COVID-19 pandemic. Most in-person teaching has been suspended, and it is unfair for both home and international students to be paying full tuition fees for a dampened teaching experience.
- Rent relief for students: As most students are now studying from home, it is crucial that the NUS lobbies the government to relieve rent payments for students who are not currently living in rented university accommodation.
- Fighting discrimination: It is vitally important to tackle racism, homophobia, islamophobia, antisemitism and sexism on across the university
- Tackling sexual harassment at universities: Latest figures suggest around 50,000 university students across the UK were sexually harassed in the past year. Recent data released by the university showed that in 2018-2019, of the cases that were recorded, rape and sexual assault accounted for 44%. It is important to note that there are likely many cases not reported to or recorded by the university. We need ensure there is a safe space for victims to report assault, as well as providing continuous education to the student body to reduce instances of assault and sexual harassment.
- Improving mental health provisions for students: Mental health is one of the most important factors for a student’s well-being. Yet, in the 2018-2019 academic year, the average waiting time for an appointment with the University’s counselling service was 8.9 working days and the average number of sessions offered to a student was 3.1. This is simply not enough – especially during the pandemic, when Mental Health concerns are more significant, and appointments are conducted remotely.