Candidate for the position of VP Activities

Image for JAMES RAY

JAMES RAY

What would you do to improve Education at the University?

As Vice President – Activities, I will improve education by supporting academic societies, as well as promoting more to be established. I believe this is important as this enables students to take part in a variety of extracurricular activities with like-minded people. This will not only make learning more inclusive for our disabled students and international students but at the same time would improve opportunities for social inclusion, this is beneficial for people’s mental health and wellbeing and therefore likely to increase academic skills.

What would you do to improve the Employability of students?

As Vice President – Activities, I will seek to improve employability by campaigning for the university to recognise personal development in students who take part in extra-curricular activities. This can be achieved by providing opportunities for students to gain qualifications through sports coaching and officiating courses as well as Societies having leadership training leading to qualifications within their fields.

How would you make the Union and the University more Inclusive?

As Vice President – Activities, I will make every effort for the University and Union to be more inclusive through promoting greater inclusion for BAME and International students in all structures of the University and Students’ Union. At the same time this will create more diverse, culturally competent support services where everyone feels they belong and are fairly represented.

How would you improve the Welfare of students?

As Vice President – Activities, I would want to improve the welfare of all students. By encouraging teams and societies to collaborate more and have effective communication between each other.  This will help to provide support and friendship networks, where we can have more success in identifying difficulties early on. Naturally it is better to be pro-active, however it’s important to have strong procedures in place, being able to respond to challenging matters as and when they occur. One way to be proactive is to include wellbeing workshops and make them a preliminary part of the societies training day.

How would you improve Communication between the Union and students?

As Vice President – Activities, I will improve communication by always having an ‘open-door policy’ and allocating a dedicated time in the week, where students meet with me face to face regarding any questions or specific problems. Furthermore, I believe the Union needs to be more visible across all campuses and not just be prominent at Moulsecoomb campus.  Having full cover of all campuses, regular correspondence through social media and meeting in person with society and sports leaders is going to be key to success. Regular check-ups will seek to develop a more effective relationship between teams/societies and the Students' Union. Therefore, making them more responsive and able to meet student’s needs. 

What qualities or experience do you have that would you make a good full time officer?

Having worked in an international summer camp for the past 4 years, part of my job was being the sports coordinator. This is where I encouraged children and young people to participate in varied sporting disciplines – learning new skills and gaining confidence. Being invited back each time at a more senior level has proven that I’m a strong leader, enthusiastic, capable and responsible.
Having studied at this great university for the past three years and representing it through multiple sports, I can evidence a variety of experiences with different teams and have gained in skill and qualities along the way. Being on the football committee meant I had to ensure the club is being run smoothly and that the welfare of players is overseen. This was only possible due to good communication and leadership. Maintaining strong relationships with other teams has also led to a larger network and enabled the implementation of events.