25th June 2020

Our SU Officer Team 2019/20 Achievements

2019/20 will be remembered as one of the most challenging years in the history of Sheffield Students’ Union. Our SU Officer team has stood up for student interests throughout, developing impactful projects, securing valuable agreements, and creating memorable experiences; all to enhance your life as a University of Sheffield student.

As their time in office draws to a close, we asked them to reflect on what they’ve achieved for you over the past 12 months, and the moments and memories that have made them most proud.

Watch the farewell video from our SU Officer Team 2019/20

Chapters
  1. What’s made us proud this year
  2. What they have achieved for you

What’s made us proud this year

Jake, SU President said ‘Renegotiating £1 bus fares has to be the highlight of my year, even though it was back in September. I know that it means so much to Sheffield students, so to be the person who was able to bring them back was a fantastic moment.’

He added ‘I also would put Underpass Festival up there though, even though it was delivered online due to the pandemic!’

Rosa, our Women’s Officer said ‘This year has been challenging and rewarding in equal measure, but the way in which we have kept our values and radical politics at the core of everything we did has to be something I’m most proud of. Whether it was working on Anti-racism initiatives and overcoming criticism, supporting strike action, being actively involved in organising climate strikes, campaigning during the general election, representing students during coronavirus - we kept our values at the forefront. I have shared some really special memories with this team, I have learnt so much and grown so much and I really can't wait to see what every one of them does in the future.’

Sissi, our International Officer said ‘It has been my privilege and great honor to work with my officer team and all SU staff to support our Sheffield students over the past year. I am so proud of all achievements we made together as a team, from Industrial Action to General Election, from #WeAreInternational to #CancelDebtNotFutures. I am also proud to highlight my Christmas campaign for welcoming international students during the quiet vacation, and that I have represented international students' voices across many University meetings. It is so exciting to have these experiences as an international student! I truly appreciate this valuable opportunity to serve students and our thriving international community. I am so pleased to be part of this incredible organisation that really values the students' concerns and deserves to be the Best SU in the country.’

Britt, our Sports Officer said ‘Something that I am most proud of during my time in office is my officer team without a shadow of a doubt. I am so fortunate to have worked with seven amazing people who are going to do unreal things later in life. It has been a year full of challenges; two strikes, a General Election, and Brexit, just to name a few before the pandemic! I just feel very very glad that we went through this journey together and most importantly had students at the heart of absolutely everything we did.’

Martha, our Activities Officer added: 'I am so indescribably proud of the team and everything that has been collectively, and individually, achieved this year. I will always look back on this challenging yet rewarding year, with a huge amount of pride and fondness. We could not have succeeded without the incredible SU staff, who contribute so much to the overall Sheffield student experience. These are challenging times and I wish the new team all the very best, you will be brilliant!'

Harry, our SU Development Officer said 'Representing students on environmental sustainability has been the greatest honour of my life. I am most proud of pushing this issue to the top of the University agenda. Speaking on BBC Sunday Politics; in front of the University Executive Board and all Heads of Department regarding the importance of this issue was an incredible opportunity and I really hope I did students proud. Concluding my term, working with the Clean Energy Switch campaign and the University to commit to 100% renewable electricity across every building on campus was a huge win for our entire community!'

What they have achieved for you

Jake Verity
President
Jake Verity
President
Martha Evans
Activities Officer
Charlie Porter
Education Officer
Charlie Porter
Education Officer
Brittany Bowles
Sports Officer
Harry Carling
Development Officer
Harry Carling
Development Officer
Rosa Tully
Women's Officer
Beren Maddison
Welfare Officer
Beren Maddison
Welfare Officer
Mengya (Sissi) Li
International officer
  • Secured £1 bus fares for all students to help ensure affordable and accessible transport for all.
  • Renegotiated £1 bus fares, saving students hundreds of thousands of pounds.
  • Organised, promoted and delivered Underpass Music Festival.
  • Kickstarted a campaign with the team to introduce a record-breaking voter turnout in SU Elections.
  • Worked with the Officer Team on a “Sheffield Student Manifesto” for the General Election.
  • Collaborated with the University to create a new Internship Networking Website.
  • Wrote to the government on a number of occasions during the pandemic, and started a huge campaign around cancelling student debt.
  • Represented students in a select committee in Parliament calling for the reintroduction of Maintenance Grants.
  • Passed the ‘Sustainable Storage’ policy with the help of Societies Counsellor.
  • Worked with the University for a disability access strategy.
  • Worked with the Chaplaincy to bring religious and cultural celebrations to all students in Sheffield.
  • Spoke at the Department of Education’s Special Educational Needs Review.
  • Ran a successful Activities Fair.
  • Created a virtual Activities Awards and worked with student groups to make sure they can keep providing amazing activities throughout the pandemic.
  • Led a student worker solidarity campaign.
  • Worked on a cross faculty climate crisis module, co-designed by staff and students.
  • Represented students in groups planning learning and teaching post pandemic.
  • Supported an Academic Rep system of over a thousand reps.
  • Campaigned locally and nationally for free, fair and fully-funded education.
  • Collaborated with students and fellow officers in climate activism and made sure the lessons of climate justice are properly learnt in the classroom.
  • Successfully ran several inclusion campaigns ranging from Pride in Sport, This Girl Can, to Disability in Sport.
  • Was the first Sports Officer to host a virtual Sports Awards and several Varsity events, to connect with students during the pandemic.
  • Passed a policy on keeping Wednesday afternoons free for sport and allowing academic flexibility for elite athletes.
  • Hosted the most attended Ask Your University event about the value of sports.
  • Helped develop the financial strategy for the Students’ Union.
  • Led three Climate Strikes and Climate Justice Week to raise awareness and lobby for structural change to address the climate emergency.
  • As student-lead for Sustainability, partnered with the University of Sheffield’s sustainability governance groups and senior leaders to develop and implement an ambitious Sustainability Strategy and action plan.
  • Liaised between the student-led Clean Energy Switch campaign and the University, where we successfully negotiated a commitment for 100% renewable electricity across every building on campus.
  • Continued to lobby for a positive change in curricula and worked with the University on strategies to embed Education for Sustainable Development across all courses.
  • Implemented the “reusable-only” loyalty scheme for New Leaf and charging lockers at the Welcome Desk.
  • Helped shape and improve the sustainability governance for the Students’ Union.
  • Led on anti-racism training for societies and sports teams, and decolonisation training with Academic Reps to help us become an anti-racist campus. This work includes holding the Universities' approach to account and ensuring they put anti-racism not simply non-racism at the core of their work.
  • Successfully ran Reclaim the Night and 16 Days Against Gender-Based Violence campaigns, including but not limited to events on state violence and rape.
  • Ran a halloween ‘My Culture is Not Your Costume’ campaign.
  • Introduced a proactive Zero Tolerance to Sexual Harassment Policy for the SU known as ItStopsNow which centres the surviver of sexual harassment.
  • Wrote a campaigns toolkit for students looking to campaign for the first time.
  • Ensured there were free sanitary products in every SU toilet.
  • Ran Our Mental Health Week 2019.
  • Helped develop the Student Wellbeing Service with the University.
  • Organised an active student welfare campaign during the strike, to help prioritise student welfare.
  • Collaborated with the Head of Counselling Service on a national student research project looking at improving student access to mental health services.
  • Coordinated accessible information on a range of welfare issues such as Housing, Money, and Immigration in light of the pandemic.
  • Launched the SU’s new WeChat account.
  • Organised the first ever Home Away from Home Christmas Ball, and SU Christmas Campaign to help our international students feel welcome on campus.
  • Led the #WeAreNotAVirus and # WhyIWearMasks campaign to tackle discrimination, which involved hundreds of students.
  • Launched the Buddy scheme to integrate home and international students in pairs.
  • Created the spare masks donation scheme to support the local charities and vulnerable people around Sheffield during the pandemic.
  • Organised the first graduates job panel with the Career Service for international students before their Graduation ceremony.