Academic Reps - what are they and why do we need them?

Here at the SU, we have over 600 Academic Reps who are key to your academic experience, so we chatted with Jasmine Ahad, a current Rep, to find why reps are so important.

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For those that don’t know, what is a rep?

A rep is the friendly face and main point of contact for students with issues and ideas for improving the course they are on. They are the buffer between students and staff that allow for effective communication between the two and help develop ideas to improve the academic experience for students.

How does the rep system help students?

It helps students by providing that one point of contact. It allows for the general student voice to be heard and represented to the staff and allows messages to be relayed back from staff to students in an effective way. It also allows for the voices of the quieter students to be heard.

Can freshers become reps?

Yes! Of course! Every year rep elections are held in the first two weeks of term, so if you’re super enthusiastic and would like to represent your course then sign yourself up.

Why did you decide to become a rep?

Becoming a rep was a great way to meet more of my fellow students and discuss ways to improve the student experience. I also wanted to develop my employability skills and I knew becoming a rep would aid me in applying for future managerial roles. You can also add the experience to your Skills Log.

What do you love the most about being a rep?

I love that I am able to turn issues into solutions and provide a better experience for my fellow students, all while building my employability skills.

What advice would you give to a fresher about getting involved with the rep system?

Make sure your studies come before your rep duties. You will need to be able to manage your time for studies, rep activities and your social life; if it all gets a bit too much there are always people in the SU to help.

What advice would you give in general to incoming freshers?

Everyone is in the same boat. Everyone else is just as nervous and excited as you and the university allows for the perfect level of independence and dependence. At University, you have the space to make your own decisions, but you also have all the support you need when you need it. The perfect combination.

If you would like to become a rep in your first year, keep an eye out during the first two weeks of term on the SU social media.