What Did Your Sabbatical Officers Do in Their First 100 Days at Oxford SU?

100 Days 

600+ Meetings 

6 Sabbatical Officers representing 23,000 students 

1 Oxford SU 

 

It’s 100 Days since your 6 elected sabbatical officers started at Oxford SU. Sabbatical officers work full-time at Oxford SU (yes, we’re paid too!) to represent students and campaign on a range of issues. The last 3 months have been packed full of Oxford SU working and winning for students at the University of Oxford. Here’s a selection of our highlights and stay tuned for more big win announcements this term.  

 

Oxford SU representing students and lobbying the Uni for its plans for the 2020-21 academic year: 

Your sabbatical officers have spent the summer sitting on a range of University groups set up to respond the Coronavirus including on academic issues, accommodation and social life. See more info at: https://www.oxfordsu.org/news/article/6013/Update-What-are-your-sabbatical-officers-doing-about-Michaelmas-2020/  

 

Oxford SU ensuring student voices are heard: 

Sabbatical Officers have featured in a range of media including BBC Oxford, Heart Radio, Jack fm, BBC South Today and the Oxford Mail, calling on the University to put stronger plans in place for the coming academic year to keep the whole community safe. Our VP Charities and Community Ben took part in a Virtual Town Hall event with University, Council and Police leaders to highlight measure being put in place 

 

Oxford SU winning for sport: 

Iffley Road Sports Centre saved: not used for teaching but open for sport: https://www.oxfordstudent.com/2020/09/16/iffley-sports-centre-will-not-be-used-for-teaching-in-michaelmas/ 

 

Oxford SU securing funding for students: 

Secured an expansion of the Covid-19 Hardship Fund for funding of up to £5000 per student which includes consideration of: cancellation of external funding, continuation charges, council tax and rent increases, or other living or study-related costs for which funding is no longer available. 

 

Oxford SU winning for Graduates: 

Oxford Uni Graduate Application Fee removed from 2024/25, saving students £2.2m every year: https://cherwell.org/2020/09/24/oxford-removes-graduate-application-fee/  

Lobbied to set up the Postgraduate Accomodation project group to find vacant rooms for postgrads including those arriving later in term and those who have had to extend their course. 

 

Oxford SU delivering essential training for students: 

Our VP Women Alex delivered 12 workshops to train 250 students to facilitate sexual consent workshops in their colleges. We’ve also provided 8 diversity and bystander facilitator trainings. These training sessions will be re-launched later in Michaelmas Term so look out for them! 

Over 800 training modules were started on our brand-new training platform. Currently 11 bespoke training sessions are available including on risk assessments, running socially distanced events and how to use our website. 

Our Clubs and Societies directory was re-launched and now hosts 81 student groups.  

 

Oxford SU campaigning for incoming students: 

Oxford SU joined the campaign from NUS, current students and alumni to get the University of Oxford to #HonourTheOffer to students whose A-level grades were affected by the government’s algorithm. We ran a social media and press campaign alongside extensive lobbying to university leadership and in key committees such as Admissions Committee. Many additional students were admitted to Oxford as a result of the campaign with more than ‘68.4% (1,899) of new undergraduates arriving for Michaelmas term in October, will be from state schools – an increase of more than 6 percentage points on last year’s admissions 62.3% (1,557) and the highest level to date.’ 

 

Oxford SU’s Advice Service supporting students: 

Oxford SU’s advice service is the only independent advice and information service exclusively available to Oxford University Students. The service is currently operating remotely and dealt with 117 student cases between June-September 2020. 52% of these dealt with accommodation issues, 40% with mental health, 14% with college issues and 6% with academic issues. You can find out more and contact the advice service at: oxfordsu.org/support/studentadvice/  

 

Oxford SU’s Virtual Freshers Fair:  

For the first time ever Oxford SU delivered a Virtual Freshers Fair. Of course, it was a little different to the face-to-face Freshers Fair we know and love. We delivered a series of webinars to students introducing the concept, over 100 students attended our kick-off webinar with 265+ students joining for the essential stallholder briefing session. Over 150 students attended our extra sessions including on how to reach students on social media and on running events in a covid world. We’re planning more sessions for leaders of clubs and societies to help maximise your potential so look out for these! 

The fair took place on Wednesday 7th October, with 12 hours of live fair action featuring 260+ stalls: a combination of sports, clubs, societies and local Oxford businesses. We had over 7800 students attend the fair on the day and a total of 264,000 booth visits. We hosted 10 live events on the day, attended by a total of 1319 people, with attendees joining from 41 countries. The average attendance for each webinar was 131 people. All the stalls are still available to view at: oxfordsu.vfairs.com (sadly our live chats with student stallholders won’t be!) 

So, there’s your summary of what we’ve been up to over the last 100 days. We’ll continue to represent students to secure the best student experience possible for students at the University of Oxford. 

You can see further updates on our website and if you think it sounds fun, look out for the annual elections in February when you can run to be a Sabbatical officer for 2021-22.  

 

Contact your elected sabbatical officer team: 

 Nikita Ma –  President (president@oxfordsu.ox.ac.uk)  

 Tucker Drew – VP Access and Academic Affairs (vpaccaff@oxfordsu.ox.ac.uk)  

 Ben Farmer – VP Charities and Community (vpcandc@oxfordsu.ox.ac.uk)  

 Lauren Bolz – VP Graduates  (vpgraduates@oxfordsu.ox.ac.uk)  

 Amelia Holt – VP Welfare and Equal Opportunities (vpweo@oxfordsu.ox.ac.uk)  

 Alex Foley – VP Women (vpwomen@oxfordsu.ox.ac.uk)