Students’ Union (BCUSU)
Welcome from BCUSU
BCUSU is run by students - for students. Each year students run in our Leadership Elections and are elected to represent BCUSU as a whole. We call these elected students our Officer Team and it's their job to represent all students at BCU. The team is made up of four Vice Presidents and a President. This year Vic was elected as Students' Union President - she's going to give you a little intro about what we do.
When you join BCU, you'll automatically be a member of Your Students' Union. Our job is to represent you and enhance your time at Uni, by providing a variety of services and activities to ensure you not only have a fantastic time during your studies, but that you leave with confidence, skills and experience that will get you your dream job. Listen to Polly as she chats with some of our Course Reps who deliver feedback from their coursemates.
We've got your back!
We've got a team of staff dedicated to making our students' lives better. Throughout your time at university we'll be with you every step of the way. Our Advice Team are here for you; whether you've got a concern about your course, need help with a tenancy contract, or if you're just after some general advice. This video explains it all.Find out more
Not for profit, just for students
Every penny you spend in our outlets gets ploughed back into your Students' Union. Our students are at the heart of every decision we make. For fresh, affordable food and evening entertainment make sure you visit our on-campus Victorian pub, the Eagle & Ball, and our Social Kitchen at City South Campus.Take a 360 tour
Let us find your student home
Finding accommodation in a city that's new to you can be pretty daunting, that's why we have our own Student Homes lettings agency - to help you find the right home for you. Our Student Homes team only deal with approved landlords to ensure that you won't be messed around!More on student homes
All of the videos on this page have been audibly transcribed.
Welcome from BCUSU
Victoria [00:00:03] Hey, thanks for stopping by. Welcome to BCUSU.
Victoria [00:00:07] I'm Victoria Your Union President, and I'm here today to tell you a little bit about what you can do with the student union alongside your studies. First things first. You should know that the student union is led by you, the students who elect us, the officers. This happens every year. And the reason that this happens every year, is to make sure that actually, what we do at the student union is in line with what the students really want to see over the course of that year.
Victoria [00:00:34] Next thing you should know is that the student union is actually a non for profit charity, which means that everything you put in, i.e. when you go to the shops and buy a sandwich or when you go to the pub and buy a pint, it actually comes back into the student union and goes towards the things that matter to you the most. Whether that be democracy, student voice, activities such as societies and volunteering or anything else that we decide to put on across the year with with events and campaigns.
Victoria [00:01:06] This leads me nicely onto talking to about student voice. Now, when student voices in temporal part of what the student union stands for, it means that everything that we do comes directly from you, the students, whether that be through data on our heat map surveys, or through a school reps and course reps, at the end of the day this just means that we're able to listen to you through as many avenues as possible.
Victoria [00:01:32] And this year we've introduced something called the Ideas Board.
Victoria [00:01:36] This is an online board that can be used by all of our students to put through ideas to us, the sabbatical officer team, then look at once it's been voted on by the student population. We also have an advice centre and they offer free, confidential and impartial advice on matters like academics and accommodation. And this is something you can access, whether you opt in or out of being part of the student union. And last but by no means least our societies. This is where you can get involved in activities that interest you separate to a university course. These can be things that academic or general interest perhaps, or even faith and culture. Plus, we also have protected societies. These sit somewhat separately to the usual societies and are all free. They cover the protected characteristics as well as things like environmental. So Earth Society, as well as our Mental Health Society, we're really proud of the array of activities that you can do at BCUSU.
Victoria [00:02:49] So anyway, thanks to watching this introduction video. Now check out below everything else that we offer in a little but more depth.
Victoria [00:02:57] Thanks bye!
We've got your back!Victoria [00:00:03] Hi, everyone, I'm Victoria. Your union president, and I'm here today with Liam King, who is the manager of the BCUSU Advice Centre. Hi, Liam. Thank you for giving us your time. So my first question to you is, what do the advice centre advise on?
Liam [00:00:24] Well, we advise on the three main areas. The one that we get the most questions about. So it's about two thirds is to do with course related issues.
Liam [00:00:34] So that can be having an extension, that can be things like appeals. If you're happy with an aspect of your assessment or it could be not so nice stuff like discipline or raise complaints and that sort of thing, that's the main area. The second one second biggest area we advise on is housing.
Liam [00:00:56] So that's everything from where to look for accommodation, getting your contract checked, if you've got issues, maybe with your landlord and then at the end moving out, making sure you get your deposit back. And then the third area is around money, particularly student finance, making sure you've got the funding, you're entitled to more if you need extra, extra, extra money.
Liam [00:01:20] Anything else we can advise on. But those are the three main areas. Plus, we do other bits and pieces around things like employment and things like consumer law as well.
Victoria [00:01:33] Awesome. Okay. And so how do students access the advice centre?
Liam [00:01:40] OK, so initially, the best way of accessing those is through we've got on our Web site.
Liam [00:01:48] There's a link to a very short form where you just put a couple of brief details in about yourself and then you just tell us wha t the issue is. Give us some times when you're available. And then we arranged for an adviser to give you. It's normally a telephone call to start with, but if you'd prefer it via email or if you want it face to face or via sort of a video chat like this, we can do any of those.
Liam [00:02:14] And then once we've dealt with the initial enquiry, if you still need advice after that, again, it's whatever it's going to be most convenient for you. We can advise you that way, Bu t if you if you don't go through the website, you can always go through when you arrive at university, your school office, or we're asking one of the student union reception points as well.
Victoria [00:02:35] Awesome. And third question, why is it that BCUSU have an advice centre.
Liam [00:02:42] That's a very good question and the university also has its own supports and support services, but we deal with a certain specific issues and topics because we're independent from the university. So we just go back to the things we've been talking about. So, for instance, if a student wishes to appeal and complain or maybe they're being disciplined, then it makes sense for them to be able to go somewhere where they know that they're getting independent advice. the advcie is in their best interests. It's so therefore would not the university service. Obviously, we're independent and employed by the student's union. Same goes for things like housing. So if you were in maybe a contract with the university and you've got an issue there, again, you come to doesn't get independent advice. That's the main reason.
Victoria [00:03:34] And last question. But by no means least, what would you say are the top tips for potential incoming students?
Liam [00:03:43] As new students, I would say the main thing and this can be may be quite a boring thing to have to do before you start, but it's really, really important. And that surrounds or budgeting money management in particular. I'd recommend if you've got any concerns about money before you come, then do a budget. There are budget planners again from our website. You can get links to really good budget plans. But yeah, make sure, where ever possible, you've got enough money to meet your rent and other things. And number two, I would say with housing contracts. So whether that's with university halls, private homes, or if you're going into the private sector, make sure you understand your tenancy agreement. Your contract is a legally binding contract. And so mostly it's not very easy to get out of. So, make sure you read, understand it and know that basically that's where you're going to be living for pretty much the whole year. No. Well, third wanted to say is just the usual stuff about, you know, setting in, making friends. I would recommend joint things like clubs and societies through the student union volunteering. There's lots of things you can get involved in, really help you sort of settle down and hopefully enjoy your year.
Victoria [00:05:04] Brilliant. Thank you so much, Liam. So, again, it was Liam. The manager of the BCUSU Advice Centre. You can find out more by going to BCUSU.COM/ADVICE. Thank you so much for seeing this video. Bye bye.