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The new direction of Queen Mary Students’ Union

Thursday 3 April 2014

In early March, students voted unanimously in support of a new strategic plan for Queen Mary Students' Union. The plan, consisting of a new mission, vision and values as well as a set of four aims with objectives was the outcome of an extensive consultation process with students and the University that started in Spring 2013.

The report begins with opening remarks from Students' Union President, Sarah Sarwar, on the importance of student involvement: ‘It is increasingly important for the Union to be seen as a tool for the empowerment of our members with a greater focus on student led development of our Queen Mary community both on and off our campuses.’

In the referendum 658 students voted ‘Yes’, 59 students voted ‘No’ and 36 students voted ‘Abstain’. This means that 87% of students who voted support the final draft of the Strategic Plan. The Board of Trustees agreed the new Strategic Plan on the back of the referendum at its meeting on 18 March, setting the Union's direction up until August 2017.

What does the Students' Union new Strategic Plan mean for you?

There are 4 key aims:

Aim 1: Students will feel like they belong to a community

This includes:
- striving to create more opportunities for cross-campus socialising
- encouraging academic societies representing QM’s different schools
- supporting and developing QM’s mentoring system
- striving to improve engagement with Postgraduate and International students
- increasing opportunities for students to start their own communities
- continuing to run campaigns in conjunction with the local community.

Aim 2: Student life will be better because of the Union

This includes:
- ensuring all students are aware of what the Union is and what power it has
- championing student led campaigns, continuing to engage with Course Representatives
- investing resources into conducting research about student needs
- representing student interests to external bodies
- developing support for students who face obstacles during their degree
- aiming to achieve a gold award from the NUS for environmental and ethical processes.

Aim 3: To prepare students for life beyond Queen Mary

This includes:
- supporting extra-curricular activities
- running skills development programs to help student recognise their skills
- providing student staff with more opportunities for senior responsibilities
- investing in creating paid internships for students within QM.

Aim 4: Students will know what the Union does and why it does it

This includes:
- ensuring students understand the role of the Union
- making it more clear which facilities are led by the Union
- creating opportunities for student groups and departments to promote projects
- creating new channels of communication
- establishing ways for students to control where money is invested
- communicating the Union’s successful impact to students.

Further details including the full strategic plan can be found at www.qmsu.org/direction.

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