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CSU Elections are here! Your chance to change things about your university life by electing the people who best represent your views.

On 1st March you will receive an email with your link to vote. This will take you the CSU Elections site where you can view all the candidates and their manifestos before voting - no login required! Alternatively, you can head to www.chestersu.com/vote and login using your University Student Number and password to browse candidate manifestos at your leisure and, after 8am on Monday 1st March, vote!

Join the candidates on Teams at 2pm on the 2nd and 3rd March to find out more about their manifestos and ask them your burning questions at two ‘Quiz Your Candidates’ events – head to www.chestersu.com/events for updated links to these.

For more information, or to view candidate manifestos, head to www.chestersu.com/elections.

You will have until 12pm on Friday 5th March to cast your vote so make it count!

This third lockdown has really put a strain on education, day to day life and especially the Activities team, with all events, sports and societies cancelled or put on hold for a substantial amount of time. With that being said, this did not stop the amazing work that Societies and Sports have been up to recently, from online sessions, to performances, to raising money for countless charities. All of your amazing work has not gone unnoticed: you are SMASHING it and we’re so proud of you all.


This brings us to the question - is there light at the end of the tunnel? Well, with new changes to lockdown advice coming as a result of announcements made by the Government this week, we may soon be able to have looser restrictions on in-person events and activities. However, as it has been up to this point, your safety is our top priority – we want to make sure any future in-person activity is carried out as safely and legally as possible. We plan to work closely with the relevant University departments to roll out activities, dependent upon the guidelines and when it is safe to do so.


So, keep up what you are doing already with your online sessions and hopefully we will be back to normality sooner rather than later.

Keep getting tested if you’re coming on to Chester or Warrington campuses by booking an appointment through the Uni’s booking service: https://universityofchester.simplybook.it/v2/#book.


Shrewsbury students – you can get tested at the Lantern Centre in Shrewsbury town by booking here: https://bit.ly/3qQ8g6R.
 

Elections – Union and Society

Voting in the Spring Elections opens on Monday 1st March, so please do get involved read all the amazing manifestos of the candidates that are running. These can be found on the Chester Students’ Union website: www.chestersu.com/elections.


Please do get in contact with us for more information, along with asking the candidates questions about how they can make a difference. Have your say in this year’s elections and make sure you vote.


Society Elections have been changed now so that all committee positions will be decided at your AGMs (Annual General Meetings). A completion date will be published in the coming weeks that these must be conducted by along with forms to be sent back with new committee’s names on them.
 

Sports teams also have their AGMs currently ongoing, so if you think you’d like to be on a committee, please ask the current ones about their roles and what they involve.


We’re all in this together, and we will come out the other end stronger! Speak to you soon.

Are you passionate about inspiring others and helping to shape future generations? Then teaching is the career path for you. Every day is a reward that is always worth the challenge.

Let your interests spark your pupils’ pursuits, and pass on valuable skills that will kickstart their journey. Encourage young minds to realise their potential and give them a head start with their passions. Take your chance to enrich classrooms with your enthusiasm, influence their stories and make a difference.

Helping to shape the youth of today will help to shape the future, as well as creating positive and memorable experiences for years to come. There’s a reason we never forget the teachers that guided us.

Turn your passion into a career. Teach.

Happy February! Hope your month has gone well. Best of luck to those of you who are handing in dissertations over the next few weeks – congratulations for making it to the finish line! Here are few updates from me:
 

In collaboration with the Sustainability Unit, we are holding Go Green Festival over February and March. This has been supported by Yasmin, the CSU Sustainability Rep, and includes valuable contributions from the Geography and Climate Action Societies. All events are virtual, with talks from staff about how sustainability fits in with different areas and digital ‘climate cafes’ to discuss topics such as sustainable fashion and what the University is already doing. There are also opportunities for students to feedback their ideas on what they want to see the University doing to tackle green issues. The Festival also coincides with Fairtrade Fortnight and has activities to recognise that, too. For more info on the events and to get involved click here.


For the first time ever, students have been invited to be involved in the University’s business planning cycle following a Value for Money report CSU shared with the Value for Money committee. Elected Department Reps have volunteered their time to sit on the panels for their specific departments. This is a great way for the University to improve transparency around fees and how money is spent across the University by getting students involved from the start.
 

Led by Dale, your Postgraduate Rep, a group of postgraduate students have taken on the responsibility to plan the Postgraduate Symposium in April, with support from University staff. This is an exciting project that puts the students, and their research, at the heart of the University. They will open the symposium up to PGT students who wish to attend and have a virtual area where those students can present posters of their early research proposals. Keep your eyes out for more information on how to get involved.


On a final note – please do keep scrolling. There is some important information below about the financial assistance the University can offer you this year. In brief – there are three different funds you can apply for this year, and we really advise you take advantage of them if you need them.

Three Funds - Three Ways the Uni Can Help Your Finances

Did you know that the University has 3 funds you can apply to this year for financial support?

 

Thanks to additional funding that's been made available by the Government, the Uni's been able to expand its financial assistance programme to cover more students than ever before.

 

The Digital Inclusion Fund

The Digital Inclusion Fund is for anyone who's struggling to access the Internet, has no regular access to a laptop or computer, or needs software or materials in order to complete their course. All you need to provide is 1 month's bank statement.
 

Email digitalinclusion@chester.ac.uk from your student email address and let them know what you need to get started.

 

The COVID Fund

If you've been furloughed from your job, lost income, or have found yourself paying out rent for both a term-time and home address due to COVID, the COVID Fund is where you should go. Again, all you'll need to provide as evidence is a single month of bank statements to qualify.

Email covidfund@chester.ac.uk from your student email address and they'll help you out.

 

The Financial Assistance Fund

If you need some extra support with your finances but don't feel any of the above applies, the Financial Assistance Fund might be able to help. Applying for this is a little bit more involved, but the CSU Advice Centre can help you fill out the forms and get the necessary evidence. Contact them at csuadvice@chester.ac.uk and they'll be able to help you out. 

 

These funds are for everyone to use. Even if you think you don't qualify, or worry that someone else might need it more than you, still ask. The money is there for all students - including you.
 

If you need help accessing any of these funds, or have any other worries or concerns about money, please do contact the Advice Centre at csuadvice@chester.ac.uk or check out their Money Advice page over at www.chestersu.com/advice/budgeting.

Hi everyone! This month has been very busy again as VP Education and Representation. Hopefully, you will now understand the Student Safety Net policy, but if you have any questions please do reach out by emailing me at sueducation@chester.ac.uk. Some big announcements as well:
 

1839 Awards nominations are open until 8am on Monday 29th March - head over to our website to nominate someone who you think deserves recognition for the work they have done this year: https://www.chestersu.com/1839s


During Development Week we ran our SER Academy, giving reps the opportunity to attend a number of sessions to develop their skills and knowledge. It was great to see students get involved in the sessions that we organised.


Student Experience Rep of the Month - this month we want to give this award to Elena Rebecca Pedersen - Course Rep for L4 Business Management. Elena attended a number of our SER Academy sessions and has been active in getting involved in discussions. It is great to see students getting the most from their role as a SER! 

VP Shrewsbury Adam Kerr writes: Hey all Shrewdents! This is just a little update for you all going into the next month.
 

LGBT+ History Month has been incredibly well received. It’s been really encouraging to see how much engagement we’ve had across the board for all of our virtual events.


Our Engagement Survey has been really enlightening - prepare to see a few Instagram Lives over the next couple of months. I can’t wait to chill with you all on a more informal level.
 

Our next SSEC is being planned, so please get in touch if you would like to get involved.


If you have any campaign ideas or anything you would like to see from your SU, send me an email: sushrewsbury@chester.ac.uk

 

VP Warrington Sam Derbyshire writes:

The month of February has been fairly quiet on Warrington Campus. The CSU All Campus Quiz has been a big hit, with students tuning in on Sunday evenings to take part in the quiz - and a chance at a £25 Just Eat voucher!. Themes this month included a couple of special rounds such as Valentine’s Day and Pancake Day.
 

LGBT+ History Month has been recognised on Warrington Campus too, with promotion of the forums and virtual activities that the CSU had on offer through the month of February.
 

March will see the continuation of the Virtual Sunday Quizzes, as you as students seem to enjoy them! We hold them every Sunday at 7:15pm on MyQuiz – make sure you’re following the CSU Facebook and Twitter for the link to each week’s quiz!

If there any suggestions for specific quiz rounds, or the quiz in general, email me at suwarrington@chester.ac.uk.

Stop the presses for a last-minute message fromyour VP Education!
 

Everyone across the University is working immensely hard to make sure your student experience is the best it can be. Like students, lockdown 3.0 for staff has been equally as difficult, uncertain and fatiguing, with the same pressures of home-schooling and looking after vulnerable friends and relatives. Please bear this in mind when speaking to staff and remember to be courteous when emailing all members of University and Union staff.
 

The programme, department and faculty teams, as well as the Students’ Union and University support services are here to help you, so please do reach out if you need any help or support.

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