When I went onto the SUARTS website (University of The Arts London Students’ Union) to buy my NUS card earlier this term (for those all important student discounts), a picture popped up of the Student Union (SU) officers, welcoming me to Meet your new Exec Team… And there smiling back at me were the faces of my reps. The only minority would be the single man amongst a group of woman, and the only equality might be the even number of non-blondes to blondes.
It was probably about three weeks ago that I stopped short on my mission to the 10th floor of LCC’s iconic tower block for my seminar on Frantz Fanon and colonisation. My eye caught the colourful poster on the notice board with the question: “who represents you?”
So I questioned; how is it possible that a college located in a diverse area as Elephant and Castle wasn’t reflective of its surrounding diversity inside the Institution? There wasn’t much, if any, diversity with the lecturers that teach me; predominately middle class, male and white. Neither was there, according to the colourful poster, much diversity with my SU. How could they be representing me when non of them look like me?
I took my frustration to twitter;
— Travel-Making-Kai (@makingkai) September 27, 2013
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— Shelly Asquith (@ShellyAsquith) September 27, 2013
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I met up with President of SUARTS, Shelly Asquith for a chat and she gave me some options about how I can bet involved in my SU; through campaigns, joining the African Caribbean Society, and supporting the SU’s request to setup Liberation Officers. This will at least open the spectrum for diversity within the SU and reduce the lack of representation in at my University. I also had the opportunity to attend the NUS Black Students’ Campaign Winter Conference, so I can support their campaigns also.
I would urge students who feel under represented in any way to contact your SU! That’s what they are there for, to listen to your concerns and help tackle them. Don’t forget the power of Social Media… Try tweeting your concerns to your SU and see if they respond!
Share your thoughts and tweet me @makingkai!
- ‘EFed’ if I do, ‘F***ed’ if I don’t! (theefedstudent.wordpress.com)
- Highlights of the NUS Black Students Winter Conference 2013 (theefedstudent.wordpress.com)
- End of term: Key ideas of Frantz Fanon on Colonisation (theefedstudent.wordpress.com)
- iSee: My journey to Uni with the Boris Bike (theefedstudent.wordpress.com)
- A black winter weekend with NUS (theefedstudent.wordpress.com)
- A Day in a Life: Controlling the Skies of Singapore Airlines (travelmakerkai.com)