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. . . . . . .. .. .. .. .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. .. .. .. .. .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. .. .. .. .. .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. .. .. .. .. .. . . . . . . . . . . ...... ................... ................... ................... ................ ...... ................... ................... ................... ................ ...... ................... ................... ................... ................ ...... ................... ................... ................... ................ ...... ................... ................... ................... ................ ...... ................... ................... ................... ................ ...... ........... ........ ............ ............ . . . . . . .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. . . . . . . . . . . . .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. . . . . . . . . . . . .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. . . . . . . . . . . .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. . . . . . . . . ...... ................... ................... ................... ................. ...... ................... ................... ................... ...... ................... ................... ...... ................... ...... ........... ...... .............. ...... .............. ...... .............. Your Official Union Newsletter ...... .............. ...... .............. March 2009 . . . . . . ...... ..............

View TopLeft online at www.birminghamcitysu.com

YOUR VOTE COUNTS! .............................................................................................. . . . . .. . . . .. .. .. .. .... ...

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Inside

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Our New Ethical & Environmental Officer

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Details on our brand new Graduation Ball!

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plus

We unveil our first Sports & Society Awards!

From Monday 9th until Friday 13th March, voting is open for the Executive Elections 2009. What does that mean? Well, voting is your chance to decide who is in charge of everything the Union does for the next academic year. From nights out and the food on offer to support for sports teams and campaigns the Union

runs, the Executive Officers make decisions every day that can have a huge impact on your student experience. From the 5th until the 13th of March, candidates for each of the five Executive positions will be out campaigning. Make sure you take the time to listen to what the candidates are saying and decide who to vote for. If you don’t see any of them

in person, don’t worry; you will be able to watch short interviews with all the candidates on Tiger TV by visiting www. birminghamcitysu.com/ tigertv. Continues inside.


YOUR VOTE COUNTS ............................................................. From Monday 9th until Friday 13th March, voting is open for the Executive Elections 2009. What does that mean? Well, voting is your chance to decide who is in charge of everything the Union does for the next academic year. From nights out and the food on offer to support for sports teams and campaigns the Union runs, the Executive Officers make decisions every day that can have a huge impact on your student experience. From the 5th until the 13th of

March, candidates for each of the five Executive positions will be out campaigning. Make sure you take the time to listen to what the candidates are saying and decide who to vote for. If you don’t see any of them in person, don’t worry; you will be able to watch short interviews with all the candidates on Tiger TV by visiting www. birminghamcitysu.com/ tigertv. Continued from front. And then make sure you get yourself to a polling

House Hunting Help ............................................................. Here at the Students’ Union we know how hard house hunting can be. That’s why we have a devoted team of advisers in our Advice Centre who can give you information and advice on anything housing related including…

Download our House Hunting Guide and a house hunting checklist at www.birminghamcitysu. com/housing. Contact an Adviser via any Union Office, by ringing 0121 331 6801 or emailing union. advice-centre@bcu.ac.uk.

The H

ouse • Checking contracts The House H unting Guide de ui G ng ti Hun • Safety and licensing issues • How to find out who the accredited landlords/ agencies are and what being accredited means • Protecting your deposit • Helping you make sure that your landlord keeps his promises

ASC Society Blood Drive

........................... The Afro-Carribean Society have organised a Blood Drive due to the lack of ethnic minority donators. Currently only 3% of donators are from an ethnic minority background and they want to highlight the importance of donating blood, especially within this social demographic grouping. The Blood Drive will commence on Monday 16th March 2009, 11am6pm at Birmingham City University. The mobile will be situated in the car park next to the Baker Building. (First session 11am1:30pm, second session 3pm-6pm). Everyone and anyone is able to get involved in this Blood Drive. Please email kaila-tiye@ hotmail.co.uk for an enrolment form and blood donor guidelines. Please visit our Facebook group - “BCU Blood Drive Session” Although the Blood Drive is being organised by the ACS, we welcome everyone to donate on the 16th March 2009.


The Grad Ball 2009 .............................................................

The National Student Survey ...........................

Thanks to all of you who took part in our Grad Ball online survey, we received a magnificent response and are now in the process of planning a fantastic inaugural Graduation Ball for final year Birmingham City Students. This will be the biggest event of the year to ensure you have the ultimate send off from Birmingham City University.

This event is to celebrate all of our Graduates, regardless of campus or faculty; make sure you don’t miss out on the best Grad Ball in town!! For all Grad Ball information and up to date ticket information visit www.birminghamcitysu. com/gradball and make sure you join our Facebook Group - “Birmingham City Students’ Union Graduation Ball 2009”.

Sports & Societies Awards .............................................................

Planning has begun for the recognition event of the year: the first Students’ Union Sports and Societies Awards. The Annual Sports Dinner is now being upgraded to include invites for any student to an award ceremony which recognises the extracurricular activities of all of our Student Groups at Birmingham City. Students at Birmingham City are extremely active and make valuable

contributions to the student community, be it through one of our media groups, sports clubs, societies, or volunteering at a community project. The awards ceremony will take place in May at a swish venue in Birmingham and promises to be a glitzy and prestigious night. For updates see your Club/ Group Leader and check the Union website later into term two!

Are you a final year student? This is your chance to have a say about what you liked and didn’t like about your student learning experience during your time at Uni. Student feedback is used to compile year on year comparative data that is: 1. Published on www. unistats.com where prospective students and their advisors can use the results to help make informed choices of where and what to study. 2. Useful to your University and Students’ Union to facilitate best practice and enhance the student learning experience. Your answers remain anonymous during the survey process and your contact details are only used for the purpose of the survey. Visit www. birminghamcitysu.com to participate.


Our New Ethical and Environmental Officer

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Following on from our recent election, we are really pleased to be able to introduce a brand new Ethical and Environmental Officer to join our team of Part Time Officers at the Union. Aaron CarfordHamlin is a second year Sociology student, already involved in ethical campaigning at the Students’ Union. Here’s what he had to say following his election: I am really pleased to be elected as Birmingham City Students’ Union’s Ethical and Environmental Officer. I am glad to be

able to voice students’ views on ethical and environmental issues. I have three main campaigns as I outlined in my manifesto during the elections. They are: a firm fair-trade policy and campaigns for cheaper fair-trade items an ethical policy - stipulating the types of investments the university can make - ensuring the university only undergoes research for sustainable and ethical development strengthening the environmental policy so it too stipulates the

types of investments the university makes I aim to develop a student voice that can challenge these issues at their university.

Student Staff Induction .............................................................................................. Our student staff attended a New Year induction in January to kick start 2009 and get our team raring to go for the new term. Staff partook in an afternoon of team building

(making baked bean towers!), talking about customer service and what it means to be an engaged student within the Union. Student-staff are the front-line forces delivering the Union’s message so we wanted to make sure everyone got to meet each other, really understand what the Union is

about and also do a bit of bonding and have fun. Have you ever considered joining the student staff team at the Union? It’s a fantastic way to support your Union in creating a buzzing University community, you get paid and it’s a pretty fun place to work! We’ll be recruiting for student staff for 2009-2010 in the Summer Term so check www.birminghamcitysu. com for updates!


Involvement Week 2009 .............................................................................................. During the last week of February the Union celebrated National Student Volunteering Week by holding Involvement Fayres at Edgbaston, Gosta, Millennium Point and Perry Barr campuses. The aim of the Union’s Involvement Week was succeeded as Student Groups, and volunteering opportunities were brought to the doorsteps of our students. The fayres encouraged all kinds of student involvement to complement students’ degrees and promoted the benefits

of volunteering both personally and to the community. Today’s graduates are in an increasingly competitive environment with an increasing shortage of jobs and an increasing number of graduates around. Your Students’ Union wants to see every student at Birmingham City thrive in whatever they do and gain valuable experience volunteering; whether joining or leading a Student Group, setting up a volunteering project or signing up to one of many volunteering

projects available, you’ll be showing the working-world why you’re so employable! If you missed any of the fayres, don’t fret! There’s plenty going on in the Union and heaps more opportunities available, so check them out at www.birminghamcitysu. Volunteering com/volunteering. Project Guide 2008/09 ....

NUS Extra Prize Draw

........................................................................................... The first Fabulous CASH PRIZE draw was carried out on the 15th December 08. 3 lucky NUS EXTRA card holders won a fantastic wad of cash to kick start their New Year.

1st Rhiannon Woolridge from City Centre Campus Wins 100

Congratulations to the winners! Don’t forget that YOU too can win one of our cash prizes. Buy yourself an NUS Extra card today and not only help yourself to the many available discounts, but

give yourself a chance to win £100 CASH in the next draw on 27th March. 3 lucky winners will go away with cash totalling £175! Buy your NUS EXTRA card today & don’t miss out!

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d

2n

Ashley Carvalho from Gosta Green Campus Wins 50

3rd

Melanie Lath from Edgbaston Campus Wins 25

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Be a Volunteer Make a difference!

Student Activities Team Day ...........................

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If you want to volunteer and make a real difference your Students’ Union is here to help! Michael Gale, our Volunteer Coordinator, is here to assist you to get the most out of your time volunteering. He is based at City North Campus every Wednesday and Friday and at Gosta Green for the rest of the week.

Michael Gale (Volunteer Coordinator)

If you can’t find an opportunity that appeals please don’t hesitate to contact our Volunteer Coordinator who will try and find something that suits your needs. If you have an idea and want to start up your own volunteering project we can provide support to get the project up and running. Creating your own volunteering project will look amazing on your CV and will mean you can get involved in something you are passionate about. Please email Michael on union.sca@bcu.ac.uk to find out more, or check out the Union website www.birminghamcitysu. com to view all the current volunteer opportunities.

The staff team supporting Student Groups and Volunteers at the Union took a day out for a Student Activities Team Day in January. During the day the team planned how they are going to be supporting student activities over the coming 18 months and helping Union volunteers to develop themselves and their clubs and societies.

Volunteering Project Guide 2008/09 ....

volunteer_guide.indd 1

Students can look forward to a fair few changes over the next year. The aim is to help Student Groups increase their membership and be more active, develop personally, be rewarded for contributions and be trained to be as well equipped as possible to lead their Group each year - so exciting times are ahead in the land of Student Activities!

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Students Switch Off to Success .............................................................................................. of the Student Switch Off, said “I’ve been really impressed by the enthusiasm that Birmingham City students have shown in the campaign. It provides a heartening example of the responsible attitude the next generation of young adults have towards our environment”.

Students living in Halls of Residence have made a great start in the Student Switch Off energy-saving campaign. In the first term, energy usage in Halls was reduced by 13%. The savings have been brought about largely as a result of the actions of the Eco-Power Rangers – not people dressed in spandex but over 425 students in halls who have pledged to use their energy carefully. Neil Jennings, National Coordinator KE N WE MA HOW CA ENTS’ UNION ........... UD .............. YOUR ST

............................ .......... ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ .................. ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ .......................... ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ .................. ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ......... ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ .......................... ............................ ............................ .............. .............. .............. .............. ............................ ............................ ................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ..... ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ..................... ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ .............. .............. .............. ......... .............. .............. ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ........................ ............................ ............................ .............. .............. .............. .............. .............. ............................ ........... ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ .............. .............. ............................ ........................ .............. ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ck. ............................ ............................ our feedba ............................ appear in ............................ and won’t ............................ purposes ............................ demographic for .......... used ............................ will only be ng details ............................ The followi .................... l ............................ .............. Emai .............. ............ ............................ ............................ ....... Date ............................ ............................ box. .............. Name .............. .............. suggestion us ............................ nses. me in the

? BETTER

As an incentive to adopt the simple energy-saving actions the Student Switch Off has been

giving out Ben & Jerry’s ice cream, tickets to Toons, and energysaving gadgets. The halls that win the overall competition will win a green party at the end of the year with sumo suits, giant jenga and a BBQ.

KE N WE MA HOW CA ENTS’ UNION UD YOUR ST ? BETTER

Acting on our members’ voices... .................................................................. ......................... ............................ .......... ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ .................. ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ .... ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ....................... ............................ ............................ .............. .............. ............................ .............. ............................ ............ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ .. ............................ ............................ ............................ .............. .............. ............................ .............. ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ................... ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ .............. .............. .............. ....... .............. .............. ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ....................... ............................ ............................ .............. .............. .............. .............. .............. ............................ .......... ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ........... .............. .............. ............................ .............. .............. ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ .......... ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ............................ ck. ............................ ............................ r in our feedba ............................ ............................ appea .............. won’t es and ............................ raphic purpos ............................ for demog ........................ only be used .............. will .............. ng details ...... ............................ The followi ............................ Email .............. ............................ .......................... .............. .............. ....... Date ............................ ............................ box. Name .............. ............................ suggestion us ............................ nses. me in the

Camp

Camp

our respo Please pop rsay to see for your time. m/haveyou Thank you mcitysu.co birmingha Visit www.

You said: Hot drinks served at Bar 42. Response: There is and has been a full range of hot drinks served in Bar 42 for some time, including a full coffee selection. Raising this question as part of ‘Have Your Say‘ highlights the requirement for more advertising of this service. This is something that the Union will act upon immediately.

our respo Please pop rsay to see for your time. m/haveyou Thank you mcitysu.co birmingha Visit www.

You said: We would like more variety in the cafes. Response: We have recently updated all of our menus to include more options, but also more importantly to offer you tasty food at affordable prices! Our burger meals start from just £2.10 with salad and fries! So please come along and check out our recently updated menus and if you have any additions or comments you would like to make, just let us know.

If you’d like to make a suggestion of your own or read more of our responses visit www. birminghamcitysu.com/ haveyoursay and help us make your Union better! BIRMINGHAM CITY STUDEN TS’ UNION existS to act on ou r members’ vo ices and cultivat e vibrant and united communitie s for better student life ...



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