VP Student Support

Domi Bacanskaite Hey everyone! I am Domi, a third year sociology student, and I would love to be your next VP Student Support! My experience: For the past year I have been the SRC Charities, Clubs & Societies Officer. I have been managing society affiliations and grant provisions, promoting teamwork between societies, and organised charity […]

Domi Bacanskaite

VPSS-DomiHey everyone! I am Domi, a third year sociology student, and I would love to be your next VP Student Support!

My experience:

  • For the past year I have been the SRC Charities, Clubs & Societies Officer. I have been managing society affiliations and grant provisions, promoting teamwork between societies, and organised charity events. I had an opportunity to participate in 3rd Party Reporting of Hate Crime and PIPS Suicide Prevention trainings.
  • For the past two years I have been a part of the GU Amnesty International committee, initially as an ordinary board member and then the secretary. Last year I ran our events for the International Women’s Week, and this year was involved in organising our two biggest fundraising nights, Jamnesty and the Secret Policeman’s Ball. When running our campaigns, I had a chance to communicate with people from a variety of organisations, as well as university officials.
  • Over the past year in the LGBTQ+ society, I have run a workshop, started a coffee evening, and volunteered at the Human Library event. My involvement has provided me with the understanding of how important and helpful it can be to meet people that are facing similar challenges in their lives and made me realise how lucky I am to be a student at this university.

My aims:

  • To hold regular drop-in sessions as a way to guarantee that students have a chance to discuss any issues that come up in a safe environment.
  • To work on increasing the visibility of the services available to students, so that everyone knows where they can turn for support. This is especially pertinent to those studying at our Dumfries campus.
  • To ensure that the Freshers’ Week and other events run by the SRC are inclusive and accessible for all, with particular considerations for disabled students, those staying at home, and mature students.
  • To run workshops on sexual harassment and consent for every new student. I strongly back the campaign that is currently being developed by the SRC together with other organisations, and support the idea of such workshops being compulsory.
  • To liaise with the Counselling & Psychological Services and ensure that student feedback is taken into account when making changes to the service, as well as be generally proactive about tackling the mental health crisis.
  • To promote stress-relief activities. I would like to keep up having dogs on campus with slots available for students during stressful times of deadlines and exams together with the future VP Student Activities, and also run more events aimed at reducing stress, such as meditation, yoga, and morning exercise sessions.
  • To cooperate with the Disability Service in tackling the isolation that disabled students often face as well as any other issues that arise.
  • To ensure continuity by carrying on the projects started by my predecessor, and teamwork by supporting the welfare officers in their campaigns and having regular meetings.

I am hardworking, dedicated and have the experience required to succeed in the role. #VoteDomi VP Student Support!

Una Marie Darragh

Election photoHi!  I’m Una Marie Darragh, an English Literature and Theatre Studies student, and I’m running to be your next VP Student Support.

My experience

I have served on the SRC Council for the last two years: as a First Year Representative and currently as Disability Equality Officer.

I have always been active on council: I have run regular welfare surgeries, aided campaigns raising money for charity, ran the #stressreleaf campaign during Welfare Week, publicised student-related activities with the PR team and have provided personal support to a large number of students with individual welfare issues.

As a member of the Disability Equality Group, I have brought the needs, views and concerns of students to senior management and held them to account to ensure real changes are made for students.

I am working closely with the current VPSS to create a Disabled Students Network: – a Moodle forum that gives students with disabilities increased representation and a chance to interact with other service users in a safe space.

I am also coordinating the final week of the STAs, preparing to host a Capability Scotland fundraising event and working on a campaign to raise awareness of the various support available to students with different disabilities.

As well as these successful achievements, I’ve gained invaluable experience in leadership and advocating key concerns of students; all whilst gaining insight into the work the SRC does to improve student experience.

If elected I will:

  • Work with Counselling and Psychological Services. I’ll build on my current relationship with CAPS to improve services and push for peer support training for staff and students.
  • Launch the first Staff and Student Welfare Conference to present and develop new ideas together to support everyone’s welfare on campus.
  • Push for condoms and safe sex supplies to be provided free in halls of residence.
  • Deliver an engaging Welfare Week as well as expanding stress-busting workshops and events across the whole year, not just during exams.
  • Push for mandatory Equality and Diversity training for University Staff. Only 44% of staff have currently completed it and this number needs to be higher.
  • Ensure welfare and accessibility is at the forefront of campus redevelopment. I’ll work closely with senior management to ensure students are catered for with facilities such as gender-neutral toilets, quiet and family-friendly study spaces, prayer and reflection zones and space for clubs and societies.
  • Make Freshers’ Week more accessible. I will work with the other student bodies to ensure that there is more focus on worthwhile daytime events and there is more provision for home students.
  • Support the SRC Welfare and Equal Opportunities Officers. Ensuring they have the training and support they need to achieve their aims, actively representing their constituencies and working with students and societies to meet welfare needs.
  • Improve communications from the SRC to make sure that all students are able to get the help and support they need.

Choose a strong, approachable and experienced candidate to represent your views.  Choose Una Marie Darragh #1 for VPSS.