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University News Update: YUSU Election Results, Returning Home for Easter and Summer Term Plans

After weeks of interviews, debate nights and voting, last night the student population finally discovered who will be elected to tackle some of the most important issues on campus. With 3523 students voting, and an impressive £2642.25 raised for YUSU RAG and The University Student Hardship Fund, the YUSU 2021 Election Results Night saw many students tuning in to witness the outcome. 

Hosted by Izzie Norwood and Harry Dennis, the night saw many important campus roles elected, such as Academic Officer, Community and Well-being, and the all-important Union President role. For those who missed the event, here is a break-down of your newly elected candidates (taken from the YUSU website):

Sabbatical Officers
Union President – Patrick O’Donnell
Academic Officer – Matt ‘The Beard’ Johnstone
York Sport President – Francesca Riley
Student Activities Officer – Sophie Kelly
Community and Wellbeing Officer – Kelly Balmer

Part-time Officers
Women and Non-Binary Students’ Officers- Rebecca Rice-Thomas and Imogen Horrocks
LGBTQ Officers – Matt Rogan and Dan Loyd
Working Class and Social Mobility Officer – Harleen Dhillon 
BAME Students’ Officer – Jordan Thomas
Disabled Students’ Officers – Rowan Casey and Victoria Cornford
International Students’ Officer – Juné Tiamatakorn
RAG Officer – Eleanor Shaw
Environment and Ethics Officer – Pierrick Roger

Faculty Representatives
Arts and Humanities – Catherine Brislane
Social Sciences Faculty – Matthew Best
Sciences Faculty – Sesha Nicholson-Lailey

Student Trustees
Anjali Bishnoi
Kyle Siwek
Daian Akand

The unfilled roles of Mature Students’ Officer, Volunteering Officer and the Accountability & Scrutiny Chair will go to a by-election taking place from Week 1 of Summer term.

Departmental voting statistics have also been released by YUSU, with an impressive 42% of Natural Sciences students having their input. In the college statistics, Langwith came out with the highest voting percentage (28%), whilst only 2% of Wentworth College students voted online. 

The next YUSU Sabbs have a tough academic year to follow, with many of their manifesto points outlining their plans to bounce back, both socially and academically, following the pandemic. 

Another piece of university news came this Wednesday, as students received an email from Vice-Chancellor Charlie Jeffery, outlining the plans for easter break, travel and summer term. Jeffery stated that students are able to travel to another UK household, and then return to university, between March 8th and April 29th. As usual, two rapid covid tests are recommended before travelling, however this is not a mandatory procedure. Although not advised, international students are also permitted to travel home for the break. 

As the summer term approaches, measures have also been outlined in preparation for the return to some in-person teaching, with a particular focus on courses requiring access to specialist facilities and equipment. Socialising will also be made more accessible if restrictions ease as planned, with four new covered outdoor structures being constructed across campus.

The final point mentioned in Jeffery’s email is an encouragement for students with financial struggles to apply for an Emergency Student Support Fund, the deadline for which is this Tuesday (16th March). Although the potential changes are small and uncertain, Jeffery has assured students that ‘the future is beginning to look brighter’.