UPDATE: We initially published this article in early January 2018. Since then we have received a petition to put our position on the Residences Review to a vote in a referendum open to all students. You can find more information on the referendum on our home page.
In December we released an initial statement endorsing the basics of the University's proposal for a new model of pastoral support in residences. This was to be followed up with a detailed response to the University, informed by further student consultation. We've heard from hundreds of students about their hopes and concerns for the proposed model, and are now releasing our full assessment of the University's proposal.
“The Residential Life model which has been proposed is a step change for the university towards a 24-hour support system that can meet students' wellbeing needs, which is why we are supporting the fundamentals of the proposal.
We know that there are a number of issues which need to be addressed in order for the model to be successful. Students are concerned that resource levels could be reduced, or that the proposal would not replicate the personal, individualised support in residences that many students currently benefit from. Our response lays out the ways that we feel that these concerns can be addressed and we expect to play an active role in the further development of the model to ensure the proposals take into account every facet of the student experience and that current good aspects of the system are not lost.
It is clear that students are particularly concerned about proposed changes to the Senior Resident role. While we believe that some of these changes could address genuine issues with the Senior Resident system, we agree there are also reasons to be concerned. This why we have urged the University to immediately review the number of Residential Life Mentors in their proposal, to make sure the resource at this level of the model is sufficient to meet student need.
Our full response to the proposed changes, including this and other recommendations for how it can be improved, can be found online."
Lucky Dube, Student Living Officer
The university will also be hosting two open meetings to allow all staff and students to hear more about the proposal, ask further questions and make further comments. Book to attend on one of the following dates:
Tuesday 23 January 5-6pm in the Reception Room, Wills Memorial Building (Please register here)
Thursday 25 January 1-2pm in the Reception Room, Wills Memorial Building (Please register here)