22 August 2011

The USU: Producing Student Leaders since 1874

If you’re passionate about reaching out to the wider university community by getting involved and spreading a message, cause or issue through fun and creative initiatives, apply for a student leadership position because applications open today!

What will you get out of it? A challenging, invigorating and unforgettable experience, leadership skills and opportunities, CV references, and getting to know the USU inside out.

Here’s an exposé on all the student leadership positions, so knock yourself out and find a leadership opportunity that invokes your inner vision. Go, go, go!

Current Campus Culture Directors, Ash Morse and Milla McPhee.
Campus Culture Directors

A Uni-wide scavenger hunt with awesome prizes? Sure, we can do that. A mass of members shaking their booties and singing like fools on Eastern Ave at midday? Why not? An awe inspiring end-of-semester carnival with crazy rides, all for free? Well… you'll have to wait and see. The USU is all about the “outside the classroom” student experience at university. That’s why we need campus culture directors! They are the ones staging the first-class experience found on campus, where the role involves working with the USU to come up with fun daytime events throughout the year and encouraging members to engage with the union to remind them of everything the union provides. Milla McPhee who is the current director along with Ash Morse, says “what's great about the job is that it allows you to come up with creative and fun things that union members may like to take part in and actually make them happen!”

Humanitarian Week Directors

Last week’s success of Humanitarian Week is still glowing. Humanitarian Week directors Cathy Tran and Kristy Samal worked tirelessly to promote a week packed with humanitarian and social justice issues.

The directors organise awareness-raising events to the wider university community through creative initiatives. Too often we get overwhelmed by depressing facts, issues and images, as Cathy said;

Kristy and I wanted to make the week engaging and inspiring, but most importantly demonstrate that making a difference can be fun. It was a fantastic opportunity to work in event management, being in charge of pretty much everything from working with MarComms to come up with our visual design right down to deciding the exact catering we wanted at each event”

Queer Events Co-ordinators

The queer community on our campus is fun, strong and diverse. That’s why the USU provides an environment that supports the awareness of queer issues through appointing two Queers Events Co-ordinators, 1 male- and 1 female- identifying Queer Convenor, who assist in developing a broad-reaching and exciting queer program. This year, Ella Bailey and Jack Freestone held these positions. Their responsibilities included putting on four significant events for queer students each year, and being the point of contact to any student who wants to learn about or get involved in any of the queer friendly activities at university. Each year the appointed coordinators also run a discussion group entitled 'Identity'. Jack explains that the aim of this group is “to allow queer students a network of support while becoming more comfortable and confident in themselves.” Jack, also on the executive of Shades, the queer society on campus (they throw the best parties!), encourages anyone interested in applying. “It is at times a challenging job, but it has definitely improved my organization and people skills.”

International Student Interns

Many international students face a difficult time settling into university life. To make them feel at home, the USU organizes a wide range of programs and events, including the Airport Welcome and Arrival Information Session, the Welcome to Sydney Party, International Food Fair, and the ESL stream for the Kirby Cup amongst others. This year, international student interns Adnab Tali and Yun Liu assisted in the successful development and promotion of these programs. Their role aims at enriching student life and promoting a fun and productive campus culture for international students. Yun, currently in her third year of International and Global studies, came from China. She says she became an international student intern because “I fully understand the hard transition that international students undertake. The internship offered a great opportunity that helped to build networks and relationships with both old and new international students along with local students who wanted to learn more about foreign cultures, and meet cool people around the world

Interfaith Week Directors

Fun fact: The USU has 17 faith-based societies, comprising of more than a 1,000 students, some of which that have been around for longer than 80 years! Issues of faith, religion and spirituality have always played a big part in society, whether it’s from changing lives to changing laws. USU Interfaith Week is a brand-new initiative, happening for the first time this year. Kate Wilcox and Sarah Segal, the current Interfaith Week Directors, are working together on a festival that will raise awareness and understanding by bringing together faith communities at university. The role requires coming up with a concept for Interfaith Week, planning the structure and events, managing with festival’s budget, marketing, and liaising with C&S executives and the Student Programs Department. Whilst this role is both challenging and exciting, Sarah found it also gave her the opportunity to meet and work with amazing people. “Being able to contribute to the dynamic student life is a wonderful experience. It also doesn’t hurt that I get my own office!” –For more info, stop by an event come October and have a chat with the directors– they’ll be the ones in the fancy lanyards.

BULL Magazine Editors

There are 5 editors appointed every year for The Bull, USU’s four-per-semester campus magazine that is all things USU. This year they were Alex McKinnon, Anne Widjaja, Kira Spucys-Tahar, Lewis D’Avigdor and Paul Karp. Anne says that her time as a Bull editor was a lot of fun, despite the tight deadlines;

“It has been an invaluable opportunity for me to refine my editing/writing skills. I loved attending planning meetings in the office and being able to help develop a holistic vision of the publication”

Her favourite part of the role has been the ability to give other contributors the chance to be published, and establishing a great network of contributors that she hopes the editors will maintain in the future.

Postgraduate Intern

Robbie Jones, the current Postgraduate Intern, explains that being a postgrad student at Sydney Uni comes with a unique set of challenges. “This is where I as the Postgraduate Intern come in. I act as a liaison between postgrads and the other postgraduate organisations (such as SUPRA) with the Union, and organise USU events and competitions.” As a postgraduate student, the Intern has first-hand experience that they use when creating events and developing strategies to engage postgraduates, and meeting with various departments. The role also includes collecting information on the postgraduate community at Sydney Uni on behalf of the Union. “I like the role because it comes with a great deal of autonomy. I am given a lot of leeway - but also great support from my supervisors. There is a real sense of satisfaction when things run as you planned and you successfully achieve your aims.”

Hermes Editors

The creative juices were flowing and artistic senses were guiding many aspiring artists and student writers on campus when Hermes, one of the oldest free literary journals in Australia, saw over a 100 submissions this year. To make sure these are collected and collated into another amazing instalment, the 2011 Hermes Editors Michael Falk, Connie Ye, Dominic McNeil and Rosie Findlay are working hard. The role of a Hermes Editor is essentially gathering creative pieces from students from all faculties, including written works or photography, with this year broadening the horizons even further through tweets and blog posts. Veering from discussing grand themes and capturing the ‘essence’ of the works, to pondering appropriate font styles and sizes, Connie describes editing Hermes like making soup on a winter’s day: Most of the time things bubble along nicely and every now and then you turn the heat up and things really start to happen. At the end of it all we can only hope to produce something wonderful for stomach and soul.”

Tuesday Talk Co-ordinators

If you’ve ever headed up to Manning Bar on a Tuesday afternoon, you may have found yourself forgetting about your hot chips and instead being engrossed by a topical Tuesday Talks debate. The Tuesday Talks program is an awesome collection of public discussions, debates and forums on contentious or current issues, held weekly and free and open for all students to attend. Four co-ordinators are appointed each year, this year being Anthony Baine, Eleanor Gordon-Smith, Tim Matthews and Tui Swinnen. Eleanor comments that getting to liaise with other student representatives who are inspiring & passionate people has been a great experience. “We've had members of clubs & societies on panels, writers of student papers report on our talks, and worked in conjunction with other student leaders. I've also been surprised to find my mind changed and my presumptions challenged by the wide range of experts and public figures who've appeared over the year” These include Eva Cox, Jonathan Holmes, Tom Switzer, James Brown, Jonathan Green, and Philip Nitschke, to name just a few. Personally, my favourite Tuesday Talk this year was the Election Soapbox held in May, what of it? 

Artists Luke Burcher and James Cooney's installation at 
 the Verge Gallery for the Art Collection Officers' exhibition - Damage.

Art Collection Officers

Is your life ambition to be the curator of a famous art gallery? Start right here and right now, at the USU, as an Art Collection Officer. The Univeristy of Sydney Museums has been managing the University and Union’s extensive collection of art from the 1970s works since 2008, and each year two students work with the Senior Curator in the on-going management of the Union Collection. Apart from gathering extensive skills development and the opportunity to curate their own show in the Verge Gallery, I imagine that the current Art Collection Officers Bethany Canan and Elyse Horan’s experience has been art-tastic.

Director of Debates

The Union produces champion debaters every year, winning debates on national and international level. Debating is not only a historical tradition; it also remains a core activity within the vibrant student life at Sydney University. If you’re an avid debater interested in supervising and organising the day-to-day running of the Debates Committee, follow in the current Director of Debates Julia Baine’s footsteps and apply!

O-week 2011
O-Week Directors  

Jessica Priebee and Rosie Marks-Smith, 2011 O-Week Directors, were screaming “Welcome Aboard!” this year at the Nautical-themed O-Week. The festival, held a week before classes begin, is organised every year to welcome everyone and provide an opportunity to meet friends, get an Access Card and sign up to as many Clubs & Societies that hold your interest.  With a budget of a quarter of a million dollars, the role involved dealing with the organising of hundreds of stalls, dealing with security, choosing food menus and bands and co-ordinating with a whole lot of zest and creativity! The 2012 O-week directors have been appointed. They are *drum roll* Linda Przhedetsky and Josh Pearse.

Women’s Events Co-Ordinator

Along with organising a host of women’s programs, this role aims at promoting the rights of women, women’s safety, and ensuring a positive environment for women. It provides a great opportunity to work with the Women’s Portfolio on the Board of Directors, C&S staff and other great groups on campus. Anna Bennett as the current Women’s Events Co-ordinator is organising a USU Woman’s Leadership Evening to network with current and prospective female leaders in the C&S program, because we want a pool for strong, qualified, AWESOME women leaders to apply for C&S Committee this year!

Verge volunteers distributed copies of the Union's literary journal, Hermes.

Verge Festival Directors

Get excited because Verge Festival is just around the corner! Directors Harriet Gillies and Tom Walker have been sweating it out, organizing a fantastic program. This year the directors have taken “come explore” as the festival’s theme, showcasing art, music, culture and comedy on campus. There’s even something about large shipping containers on Eastern Avenue.  Two positions are available for 2012: Directors plus Liaison Officers for the Conservatorium of Music and Sydney College of the Arts, along with a Verge Publicity Officer. You will get to direct the largest Arts festival on campus, choosing the theme, venues and artists line up. There’s even a cash honorarium –enough said. 

Check out all the student leadership positions currently available here.

Astha Rajvanshi 
Board Director

No comments :

Post a Comment