NOTE FROM THE EDITOR Welcome to Issue 9 of Crywolf. Sadly we said goodbye to Stephen Green, who has been guest editing, as he has lots to do for his course. I am sure you are all feeling the pressure of deadlines, no money and no jobs! So, here is Crywolf which will give you ten minutes to escape and relax. Catch up with what your SU has been doing and hear from our regular bloggers. You will meet the new Executive and Student Reps in this issue after a great Election period. This is the last issue of the year and my last issue EVER! I hope the magazine continues to blossom in years to come. I have loved working on it. After all, a Crywolf working group was where my Students’ Union life began back in 2005! Finally, thank you to Jas Jandu and Darshan Patel who put every effort into each issue. Caroline Rose
NUS CONFERENCE Fr om Left: Cher yl McGiver n, Wes Str eeting , Car oline Rose
Two, Editors Note, NUS Conference Three, International Womens Day Four, Five, Elections 2009
Six, Seven, Introduction to Executive Elect Eight, My Presidential Year, Change for Life, Where’s Wally? Nine, Bally Says, Fairtrade Fortnight Ten, Hemy’s Diary, Fashion Focus Eleven, Twelve, SU News & Updates Thirteen, A Green Week Review Fourteen, A Stab in the Dark Fifteen, Wolverhampton Graduates fear Recession Sixteen, Fighting for a Fairer Funding System Seventeen, Executive Blogs
On 31st March we travelled to Blackpool for NUS Annual Conference. We had a great three days setting new policies for NUS. We elected our new National Executive. The results are as follows: Wes Streeting- National President Ben Whittaker- VP Welfare Aaron Porter - VP Higher Education Susan Nash- VP Society and Citizenship Richard Budden- VP Union Development Shane Chowen - VP Further Education
Eighteen, Nineteen, Sports Update
There was also the Part Time Officers Election, of which we were really proud that Alice Bouquet was elected along with 14 others.
Twenty, Grub Club
Full details of the Conference can be found at www.nus.org.uk
Contributors, Stephen Green, Jas Jandu, Cheryl McGivern, Hazel Monger, Hemisha Morarji, Rebecca Millar, Caroline Rose, Bally Singh and Dominika Tasarz. Designed by Darshan Patel.
WOMENS DAY On 9th March I organised, together with the University Equality and Diversity Unit a day to celebrate all things women. The day is celebrated internationally, but was a first for the Union. Hosted in our very own building we had a full room of women. Coffee and chats started the day, followed by an opening from Jane Nelson (Pro Vice Chancellor Student Affairs). Our own President, Cheryl then spoke about her experiences of being a female leader. We had many staff contributions which were wide ranging from growing up as a black woman in Wolverhampton through to making it in the sound industry surrounded and competing with men. The afternoon saw three of our own students, Sarah Keddie, Ann Hayward and Ceri Davies speak. I was so proud of them all. We finished the day with an art exhibition organised by the School of Art and Design (SAD). There were many artists and guests visiting the event, creating the atmosphere of the very serious vernissage. All visitors had the opportunity to see various types of artwork, created by female artists from SAD. The exhibition consisted of paintings, collages, photographs, ceramics and much more. The themes of artwork were as diverse as their authors – women of different ages, cultural backgrounds and nationalities.
Although all work had been created by women, the topics did not have to be necessarily linked to femininity. “It is just the artist that is female, our work is not connected strictly with feminism”, said Rezwana Ahmed - one of the students whose work was exhibited. “We just try to promote ourselves as female artists. We want to celebrate the Women's Day and encourage all students to do some work”. The exhibition aimed to present a woman as an artist, expressing herself in the chosen form of art. In this case, art was the way to show us the world and how it lives, with its issues and problems, from a female's perspective. So, among many others, the exhibition presented some traditional craft work; modern-style, eclectic collages; classical and abstract paintings; futuristic-designed crafts and conceptual videos. What’s for sure – all work was very personal, inspirational, and thought-provoking. What’s even more important – it was all made by women. Dominika Tasarz, HLSS student Caroline Rose Welfare & Campaigns VP
ELECTIONS 2009 A RECIPE FOR SUCCESS
Take 20 passionate students, add a handful of dedicated staff plus the opportunity to help run an organisation representing over 20,000 students and what do you get?
A record-breaking Students’ Union election, that’s what! For the first time in my 8-year career working in Students’ Unions, I’ve helped to co-ordinate an SU election and it just about fried my brain. Having experienced 4 elections as a candidate, I thought I had a pretty good idea of what an SU election involved. I didn’t know the half of it.
ing and double checking the votes. One position was so close the votes had to be counted 3 or 4 times. And all the Sabbatical positions (with the exception of Welfare & Campaigns VP) went right down to the last two candidates before we knew who’d won.
To most students the election will be remembered as that week when you couldn’t step foot onto campus without being ambushed by campaigners competing for your vote. But there was so much more to it than that. Preparations for the SU elections started in earnest before Christmas. Countless meetings were held to discuss the best way to promote the elections and encourage students to stand. This year we really wanted candidates to feel prepared for the elections so we held three types of meeting: ‘What Am I Letting Myself In For?’, ‘Preparing for Nominations Deadline’ and a ‘Candidates Meeting’ which were held just before campaigning started. We also had some very tight elections regulations this year to ensure candidates were clear on the boundaries they were expected to campaign within.
So, was it worth all the hours of preparation? Absolutely! The four months of hard work definitely seems to have paid off. We achieved a voter turnout of over 2,200 students; the highest we’ve ever had. For me, the icing on the cake is that we’ve had some incredibly intense campaigning without resulting in candidates wanting to rip each others’ throats out. So now what? Well, we’ve got three months before next year’s Executive team take up their positions. And once they get started they’ll need to put in place all those things they promised you during the Elections. So why not pop in next year and check how they’re progressing? And if they’re running any campaigns you’re interested in, why not help out? You never know - you might be an Executive Officer in the making.
Every single member of staff in the SU helped out; whether it was by staffing a ballot box, conducting the count or helping out in some other way behind the scenes. And all this was overseen by the Elections Committee and the Deputy Returning Officer.
So, that’s it. Well…except for the fact that we still have quite a few part-time Executive and School Rep positions left. And what does that mean? A Bye-Election in the Autumn of course. Hmmm, I guess we’d better start preparing!
The count itself was incredible. A group of Union staff and Sabbatical Officers spent the best part of nine hours count-
Hazel Monger Repr esentation & Democrac y Co-ordinator
INTRODUCTION TO THE
EXECUTIVE ELECT Name: Bally Singh Job Title: President (Finance and Governance) Elect Nickname: Bal Age: 21
What are you most looking forward to in the coming year? Making a change to the Union! And making sure the students know what’s available to them. If you were on a desert island, what 3 things would you take with you and why? I would take my iPod, laptop with internet and a bottle of Vodka. Standard.
Name: Will Varnam Job Title: Academic Vice President Elect Nickname: Will Age: 21 What are you most looking forward to in the coming year? Working in a job I’ll love with fantastic people.
Who is your role model? I wouldn't say role models as such, but there have been many people in my life who have taught me many things whether it be my parents, siblings, work colleagues or friends. Which celebrity do you fancy? Beyonce/Pink/Joss Stone - actually can't decide!! What is your favourite film? Free Willy!! Complete the sentence, “If I won the lottery, I would… ….buy a lottery ticket because I'm greedy like that! Which celebrity do you fancy? My girlfriend. What is your favourite film? Shawshank Redemption. Complete the sentence, “If I won the lottery, I would… …invest it!
If you were on a desert island, what 3 things would you take with you and why? My girlfriend, a guitar and my favourite book. Who is your role model? Ben Gibbard Name: Chris Jones Job Title: Sites and Democracy Vice President Elect Nickname: Sparky Age: Too old! Lol
What is your favourite film? Kill Bill.
If you were on a desert island, what 3 things would you take with you and why? Laptop, mobile phone, also I’d take a boat full of food!
Complete the sentence, “If I won the lottery, I would… ….donate quite a bit of money to certain charities and make sure everyone I cared about were financially stable, then just finish it off with a good time.
What are you most looking forward to in the coming year? I am looking forward to expanding and growing the things which I have started this year. Having two years in office is a great opportunity to make some real progress and expand! If you were on a desert island, what 3 things would you take with you and why? Stella because I love to party, a laptop so I could e-mail everyone and Subway just because! Name: Matthew Ward Job Title: Welfare & Campaigns Vice President Elect Nickname: Wardy, Matt Age: 21 What are you most looking forward to in the coming year? Making a difference to students life and being out there campaigning on issues affecting students. If you were on a desert island, what 3 things would you take with you and why? Phone, unlimited vodka, and a rubber dinghy.
Which celebrity do you fancy? Sarah Michelle Gellar
What are you most looking forward to in the coming year? Most of all just getting involved with the students and listening to their ideas and suggestions about the year ahead.
Name: Eric Potts Job Title: Sports and Societies Vice President Nickname: Potts Age: 23
Who is your role model? Family and Friends
Who is your role model? My parents, Cheryl McGivern and Stiffler. Which celebrity do you fancy? Any famous lady with money! What is your favourite film? Oceans 11. Complete the sentence, “If I won the lottery, I would… …buy a casino and make more money!
Who is your role model? Ricky Hatton. Which celebrity do you fancy? Keeley Hazel What is your favourite film? Monsters Inc or Snatch Complete the sentence, “If I won the lottery, I would… ...start a new life down under.
Name: Claire Smith Job Title: Non Portfolio Officer Nickname: N/A Age: 21 What are you most looking forward to in the coming year? Being part of the Union I guess, and running the LGBT Society. I look forward to being able to run a really good LGBT Awareness Campaign. If you were on a desert island, what 3 things would you take with you and why? A very sharp knife, a tent and another person, I wouldn’t want to get lonely. ☺
Name: Dave Anson Job Title: Home Students Officer Nickname: Dave Age: 22
What is your favourite film? I enjoy films, most kinds, as long as it’s not filled with pointless violence. Complete the sentence, “If I won the lottery, I would… ...give some to charity, some to friends and family. I think first and foremost I would pay off all my University fees. Who is your role model? Anyone who stood proud in times of controversy. Which celebrity do you fancy? Anne Robinson. What is your favourite film? Remember the Titans.
If you were on a desert island, what 3 things would you take with you and why? Swimming trunks, a chess set and Ray Mears.
Complete the sentence, “If I won the lottery, I would… …..take my friends on holiday then emigrate to Guyana.
Name: Alex Blower Job Title: Activities Officer Nickname: Blower Age: 20
Who is your role model? Ellen Marshall. Which celebrity do you fancy? Most of the women. What is your favourite film? Dog Day Afternoon.
If you were on a desert island, what 3 things would you take with you and why? A woman for….well, you know. A frisbee for fun and a dog to attack any crabs!
Complete the sentence, “If I won the lottery, I would… …not bother with Uni.
Name: Ellen Marshall Job Title: City Officer Nickname: Elle, Ellie Age: 20
Who is your role model? Alex Blower.
What are you most looking forward to in the coming year? Following on with the work I’ve already started and working with new people (but I’ll miss the old lot!) If you were on a desert island, what 3 things would you take with you and why? My iPod, boyfriend and a boat in case I want to leave. Name: James Milner Job Title: SAS Rep Nickname: N/A Age: 22
Which celebrity do you fancy? David Tennant as Doctor Who! He’s pretty hot and Alyssa Milano.
What are you most looking forward to in the coming year? Fighting for students rights.
What are you most looking forward to in the coming year? Making a difference and getting events organised.
Who is your role model? Let’s say my father, he has achieved a lot, and just keeps on going, I hope to be like that too.
Which celebrity do you fancy? James Dean What is your favourite film? My Girl! (still cry at it). Complete the sentence, “If I won the lottery, I would… ….be rich!
Who is your role model? Pass. Which celebrity do you fancy? No one (the girlfriend is watching!).
What are you most looking forward to in the coming year? Solving peoples problems.
What is your favourite film? Star Wars (I know, I’m a geek!).
If you were on a desert island, what 3 things would you take with you and why? My girlfriend, music and lots of food.
Complete the sentence, “If I won the lottery, I would… ….be getting very very drunk!!
MY PRESIDENTIAL YEAR Cher yl McGiver n
This year we’ve had our ups and downs, and I have been really proud to lead UWSU through these rocky patches. So let me take you through a snap shot of my time as President. We started the ball rolling in September with Fresher’s week which was one of the best I’d ever seen, the sabbatical and staff team worked hard to achieve this week for all the students involved in our Union. Then we had to start proving ourselves to the University and more importantly you, the students. We proved ourselves to the University by working alongside them to build a strong and powerful relationship which would continue to develop throughout my time and my successor’s time; I provided a great set of finance accounts and gave the Governors something to shout about when updating them on the Unions’ activities throughout the year. Each month we held campaigns and tried our best to hold events for the students. This year events weren’t our strong point but I am happy to say that we campaigned hard on some very important issues that made the students aware of what we were trying to achieve as a Union.
WHERE’S WALLY? No one escaped ballot box duty during the voting period of our Elections – not even Wally! Here we see Wally invigilating whilst a vote is being cast. When asked how he coped with the long hours and cold corridors he had to sit in, Wally replied: “I had my lovely knitted jumper to keep me warm and lots of Fizz Wiz popping candy…although everyone kept trying to steal it! Grrrr!. The corridor was crazy and I had a bit of fur pulled out by mad campaigners!”
I am proud to say that I won over the support from NUS this year and kept them fighting with me in all areas. Without the support and advice from NUS this SU would have been a very different place and I will always be grateful for their support. I also recruited the CEO to work along the staff team, to provide targets and goals so the Union can tick over when the Sabbs are not around. This year has been a great learning curve for me and I will always appreciate every scenario that has come my way. At the age of 21 I never thought I would have dealt with some of the things I have…I will always be happy to say that I was the start of something new at UWSU, and this Union will always need developing but I believe I began to bring it out of the slumps and for that I thank you for voting for me in 2008. Thanks
Look out for Wally during Fresher’s Week!
Cheryl McGivern Student Union President (Finance and Governance) 2008/09 8
Jas Jandu Marketing and Campaigns Co-ordinator
BALLY SAYS... Bally Singh
Hey WLV guys and gals! How are you all? The summer is here-ish, the suns shining and the weather is lush! FINALLY!
hours. Also, when reheating, make sure the food is steaming hot all the way through!!
The SU are concentrating on all things healthy until the end of the term. For those of you who know me, I’m not the finest suitor to all things healthy. So this month, Bally says….BE HYGENIC! Here are my points to make you grubby students...well...less grubby! :)
2) Mouldy food. Making cheese on toast? See some green hairy stuff on the cheese and bread? Think cutting it off and hoping for the best will be grand? Heck NO! Fungi, especially on foods, produce invisible toxins leading to the rest of your food...which can make you poorly!! Who wants to get ill whilst at Uni?
1) Leftover takeaways. We all do it, the next day, a left over pizza is sometimes the greatest dining experience one experiences when a student. Make sure all leftovers are kept in the fridge though! As (here comes the science..) one single bacterium can lead to thousands if not millions in the space of 12
3) That 5 second drop rule. Floors are where you walk. You walk, sometimes in dog sh*t. So folks, if you drop a pizza on the floor after a night out, for heavens sake, just don’t eat it! This is what someone did, and sadly they are no longer with us*.
4) Wash ya DUTTY hands. Guys and girls, WASH YOUR HANDS! It's as simple as that! Especially before eating, it takes 10 seconds and to be honest, it’s just plain dirty and minging if you don’t! 5) Cook for yourself. Don’t rely on takeaways too much! If you can’t cook, then think of what the healthier option is after a night out - SALAD ON A KEBAB COUNTS AS A FIVE A DAY!! :) Be happy, be healthy. With love and smiles as always, Bally Singh xx *Disclaimer: True story about the pizza drop - but Emily is alive and well :)
FAIRTRADE FORTNIGHT Quizzes, lunchtime lectures and efforts to boost a ‘banana eating’ world record attempt were among the activities at the University of Wolverhampton to celebrate Fairtrade Fortnight. The University planned events to mark its first year recognised as an official Fairtrade University. Special guests visited City and Walsall campuses to talk about their involvement with Fairtrade. Among the speakers were Bernard Ranaweera, President of the Sri Lanka Small Organic Farmers Association, and Peter Westall, Head of Business Development for the Midcounties Co-operative.
A Fairtrade stall and tea and coffee taste tests were held and students created posters to raise awareness of Fairtrade. The Students’ Union coordinated the University’s support for the national world record breaking attempt to ‘Go Bananas for Fairtrade’. We managed to eat a massive 400 Fairtrade bananas in one day as part of the national effort which saw 429,466 Fairtrade bananas eaten. If you would like more information on the University’s Fairtrade Status or would like to join the Fairtrade Society please email: email@example.com
As clichéd as this sounds, it’s been ten weeks and so far, the whole semester feels like it has lasted ten minutes. That is, ten minutes of assignments and reading that feels as crammed and rushed as Spiderman 3.
Already, this article feels like its being slap-dashly done, simply because this week has been incredibly hectic. Essay planning, reading logs, writing essays, group meetings....you get the idea. I haven’t been too pleased with how this week has started. On Monday, I have people calling me at twenty minutes before the due time for a group meeting that I was completely unaware of. This wasn’t good for me as it roughly takes me an hour to get from Dudley to
Wolverhampton by bus. Yes, in the words of Franz Ferdinand, “I want a car”. I really do need lessons as soon as this semester finishes. Anyway, this short notice meant that I had to quickly straighten my hair and leave my scruffy home hoodie on as I had no time to change into something more decent. Luckily, we did manage to do a good job of the group essay, considering that it was last minute. I just hope that I’ll continue to hold this opinion when we get our results this summer. Lectur-
ers really do need to e-mail us with regards to this. I really am finding it hard to focus, I can’t write 1000 words without the urge to click on the iTunes icon and spending more than an hour listening to Wallis Bird, 3Oh3! and the Libertines. A hell of a lot of will power was needed to get essays done. Only four weeks left and all of this will be over. YAY. Luckily it wasn’t all laptops and lectures at Uni. A few weeks back, I went on a trip with the Travel Writing class to Ironbridge. As the name self-explanatorily suggests, it’s a village that features a bridge made from iron, which to be honest, wasn’t the most glamorous of places. It was like walking through Emmerdale but without the street cat fights and the chavvy screaming. It was a pretty decent day, simply because it was better than listening to the lecturer talk for more than thirty minutes. Other than that, I’ve been spending my free time shopping around for a fancy dress costume for my friend’s 21st. At first, the Watchmen’s Silk Spectre came to mind. However, as there weren’t any costumes available anywhere, I (to my dismay) was forced to cross it from the list. My second choice was between Catwoman and Harley Quinn. Anyway,
I shopped around at a couple of cheaper sites. Even though the prices were reasonable, the quality made me far too reluctant to part with even a penny. There was no way I was going to throw away £30 on a laughably shoddy costume that looked like it was made by a GCSE Textile student. I think I’m going to leave it until one or two weeks before the do. By then, I might have decided what I’m going to come as. This Easter I will have to refrain myself from being distracted from Facebook and holiday movies, despite how depressingly boring the essays and readings I have to do are. I will have to figure out how I’m going to conjure the motivation to reading one chapter from ten very boring travel books. They are like reading the boring bits of Lord of the Rings where Tolkien spends a chapter describing a ravine or a tree. OK..I’m exaggerating there, but being forced to read stuff with no plot is going to p**s me off. But on the bright side, I will have plenty of Easter eggs to enjoy. And maybe some catch up time with mates I haven’t seen in a while. YAY again. Hemisha Morarji
FASHION FOCUS: STUDENT STYLE Once again we have been searching for the best dressed students on campus. This time however, we thought we’d pick someone who most of you will recognise – if you visit Zone Extra on City campus. Our feature on student style focuses on Jennifer Clayton. Jen is a 1st year Sports Studies student. We caught up with her during her shift as a City steward and asked her about her style: What are your favourite high street stores? Urban Outfitters, River Island, Primark when I’m skint, TK Max and H&M. If you had £500 for a fashion shopping spree, where would you head to? Erm….I would go to one of my favourite high street stores or Selfridges for jewellery. Are you a handbags or shoes girl? I would say pumps lol. Who is your favourite designer? Erm…that man who made that girls’ dress in Sweet 16. What would you say is a girl’s ‘must have’ item for this season? Beads, big ring or watch. Where did you buy the clothes you’re wearing today? Vans from the internet, grey pants from River Island, socks from Primark, t-shirt from Size, beads from Topshop, bangles from Primark and my bag is from Afflecks Palace. Finally Jen, do you have an NUS Extra card? Yes. Need we say anymore?! Jas Jandu Marketing and Campaigns Co-ordinator 10
SU NEWS & UPDATES STUDENTS’ UNION COUNCIL (SUC)
SPORTS AWARDS AND END OF TERM PARTY
Find out what your Executive are doing for you. Come and observe the Students’ Union Council (SUC) meeting in the Council Room (MA221) on City Campus on Thursday 7th May at 6pm.
NATIONAL STUDENT SURVEY CLOSES SOON!
Calling all final year undergraduate students – if you have not yet completed the National Student Survey (NSS), you need to do so asap. The survey closes on 30th April 2009. To take the survey, visit: www.thestudentsurvey.com 1st and 2nd years look out for the results in the Autumn! 11
After the success of Walsall Wednesday, your Union has decided to host another event in the SU building on Walsall Campus to help raise money for the Athletic Union. The evening will begin with the Sports Awards from 7-8:30pm which is a great way to help celebrate our sports achievements from the past year. An end of year party will then take place from 8:30pm–12am. All students from all campuses are welcome to attend. The event will take place on Wednesday 6th May at Walsall Students’ Union. For ticket information, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
POLICE NUS DROP EXTRA IN SESSIONS
The Advice and Support Centre (ASC), in conjunction with our University Liaison Officer, PC Claire Yeomans, are hosting dropin sessions on City Campus, for students to speak to a police officer in a relaxed, yet confidential environment.
Get your NUS Extra card for just £10 and take advantage of a variety of discounts. The end of year may be approaching, but don’t let that stop you! – NUS Extra is valid up until the end of September 2009 so you can benefit from these amazing deals throughout summer! Visit: www.wolvesunion.org.uk for details on how to order the card online or visit the Activities Centre on City Campus during term time between 9am-5pm Monday to Friday.
On Friday 13th March, our very own Activities Officer, Alex Blower, decided to take a dramatic step in which to raise money for Comic Relief. Alex decided to change his name by deed poll to ‘Comic Relief ’ and has so far raised in the region of £70 for charity. Well done Alex!
PC Yeomans is available between 12noon and 2pm, every alternate Wednesday in the ASC. The next sessions are being held on Wednesday 6th and Wednesday 20th May. To contact the ASC team, e-mail: email@example.com Claire will primarily be on hand to answer queries and concerns, as well as take reports of incidents, in confidence, should she be required to. Students are encouraged to simply drop by and get to know PC Yeomans, who is regularly on campus for the benefit of students. Claire can be contacted at any time by e-mailing: C.Yeomans@wlv.ac.uk
BESTMATES RECRUITMENT We are recruiting for student volunteers, aka Bestmates for the academic year 2009/10. Bestmates work with Sabbatical Officers and Union staff to provide support, mainly during Fresher’s Week and throughout the academic year. To become a Bestmate, register your interest at: firstname.lastname@example.org or pick up your application from reception. Jas Jandu, Marketing & Campaigns Co-ordinator 12
Alex Blower Bestmates
To see what other shenanigans took place at the Students’ Union, view the photo album in full at: www.wolvesunion.org.uk/ gallery
WILL THEY ‘CLEAN UP’ THEIR ACT?! A GREEN WEEK REVIEW
On Monday 16th March 2009 the Students’ Union launched its first ever Green Week. We began by making a human “Go Green” sign in the Sports Hall on City Campus which was great fun. The staff at the Union all wore their best green outfits and donated money to the People and Planet charity. We managed to raise £50 for the cause. Tuesday was host to a Pledge Wall where 127 students pledged to do something for the environment. On the whole, people pledged to recycle more, walk not drive, turn electrical items off rather than leave them on standby (etc), but there were some rather odd pledges at the same time! If you fancy having a read, the wall is on display in the SU corridor on City Campus. Alongside the pledges, we had a face painting company, Fun Faces by Michelle, come in and paint faces for free providing a small donation was made to our chosen charity. As it was St Patricks Day, many students got involved and had things like Guinness pints painted on their cheeks. Moving on to Thursday, the Executive were out in force to get signatures on a petition that is now to be sent to Wolverhampton City Council and University to let them know that students think they
should be doing for the environment and to gain an ethical conscience. I hope it has some impact as we got 331 signatures in 2 hours! The Green Party were also on campus to help out. Friday was a really exciting end to the week. We had a visit from Wolverhampton City Council’s Enterprise team, Friends of the Earth, The Vegan Society, PETA and Christian Aid. Between them they interacted with around 200 students and pushed their campaigns on campus. I hope that in May we can finally pass the Unions Green Policy at Students’ Union Council. If we do, then there will be an annual Green Week and lots of fun to look forward to. On a final note, don’t just do it once a year, think green. Take showers, only fill the kettle as much as you need to, turn the lights off.. I could go on and on. I hope Green Week made you think and if nothing else, encouraged you to change just one thing. Caroline Rose, Welfare and Campaigns VP email@example.com
A STAB IN THE DARK:
AN AFTERNOON WITH RICHARD BROOK Richard Br ook
THE INTERVIEW How and when did you become interested in acupuncture? It was when I was 17, I was already interested in yoga and Tai Chi and it’s grown from there. I first properly started in my late 20's around 2004. I actually used to live with a new age
community in Scotland and from that I have tried to make every part of my life holistic. I sort of found my course through having a vision in a Native American dance ceremony, at the time it didn't make much sense, but after a few months I ended up at open night at an acupuncture college and started thinking about it and what it could mean. Then absolutely by coincidence the lecturer started talking about things that had appeared in my vision, I got goose bumps and it became clear that this was something I needed to do. What type of training did you receive prior to obtaining your license? I had a bit of training before I started on acupuncture, some energy healing with my hands
and reflexology on close friends and family, but not to any real accredited standard. I see the practice of acupuncture as more similar to art; it was all to do with natural cycles of energy. I also have a degree in Food Technology and used to manage an organic food shop Do you think a patient’s attitude towards acupuncture influences the success or failure of the treatments? No, I believe that if someone’s got that mindset it won't matter. It will still work. I think that them not believing in it is a sign of them losing touch with nature. What about pain, do you think if somebody thinks its going to hurt it will? Well everyone has their own
personal pain threshold. But feeling the sensation of pain is a good thing, remember it’s just your body telling you what's what. It's the feeling of being connected with nature. What might a typical treatment entail? I start with a consultation and from that I'll try to gather what needs attention. Before I start with the actual treatment I'll also do a few physical exams to get a bit of diagnostic information, each exam I do gives me an idea of what's going on in your body. How long would a typical treatment last? The first will usually be around two hours with follow up treatments around forty five minutes to an hour.
MY EXPERIENCE I must admit the prospect of acupuncture was daunting. Now I'm no stranger to needles having my fair share of tattoos and I have had pretty much every other holistic therapy under the sun. But there will always be something about acupuncture. The first thing everyone's wondering about is does it hurt? Well yes and no, some bits hurt and others I barely felt go in. The worst for me was the forehead and the inner arms and wrists. I should consider myself lucky as according to Richard, in China, instead of having a needle either side of the wrist you are able to have one needle go straight through!
it and it seems the more we try, the more we mess up. We need to try to get it back. I would recommend acupuncture to people and not just for physical problems and pain, but it’s also effective for mental and emotional imbalances and conditions such as anxiety and depression. One particular thing Richard mentioned is that it’s good for stress - great news for all you dissertation stretched students out there. Even greater news, is that he is willing to offer a huge student discount. Usual treatments cost £55 to start with and £35 for subsequent treatment, but for students he's asking for just £25 per session.
To be honest I did feel very relaxed during the treatment, but it's hard to say what it’s done to me in the following weeks as I didn't really have anything wrong with me. But I do have to say lying there in my boxers with needles in my chest was a very surreal experience. Although, as Richard said, this is text book acupuncture action.
If you want to get in touch with Richard, you can find him at his Wolverhampton or Walsall practice -
Richard uses a very traditional approach, which is called The Five Element style. It has a lot to do with natural living and communicating as well as being in balance with nature. Richard says, we have lived for thousands of years with nature but now we seem to have fallen out with
Alternatively, you can visit his website: www.richardbrookacupuncture.co.uk
• Wolverhampton: Equinox Therapy Centre, 48-49 Victoria Street • Walsall: Six Ways Clinic, 24 Birmingham Rd
WOLVERHAMPTON GRADUATES FEAR RECESSION Students from University of Wolverhampton fear the current economic crisis will leave them out of work when they graduate this summer
A new survey has revealed that nearly two thirds (63%) of undergraduates are worried about finding employment due to the recession. To compound this, only 12% are very confident about finding a graduate level job within the first three months of completing their degree course. In response to this, Advantage West Midlands (AWM) has launched Grad Central, a new online graduate recruitment service backed by an experienced team of recruiters, which is specifically designed at growing the number of graduate jobs in Wolverhampton and the wider region. Lucy Cheatham, project director for Grad Central, commented: “There’s no denying that the current climate means the jobs market is more competitive than ever before. However, despite students’ concerns, the job market for graduates is much stronger than people think. In fact, we have a number of roles that we are still yet to fill due to a lack of candidates. I would therefore strongly encourage any graduate who is looking for employment to register with us now.” Through the launch of Grad Central, AWM aims to get thousands more graduates into jobs with the regions private companies. The company will also be working closely with universities across the West Midlands to do this. Grad Central provides graduates with an expert job matching service, offering them an unrivalled choice of job opportunities across all industry sectors and all business types throughout the West Midlands. To 15
compliment this, experienced recruiters are on-hand to help graduates throughout the process, along with sophisticated online services like the ‘Talking CV™’ tool, which helps boost graduates’ profiles with potential employers, and real time job alerts so graduate job seekers can be informed about the newest jobs at any time on their mobile. Continued Lucy: “On top of the wide range of services we offer graduates, there are a number of unique benefits of using Grad Central that will encourage businesses to advertise their job opportunities with us over other recruitment sites. This includes no fees on their first graduate placement and a very competitive set fee of £500 for every graduate placement after that, which is significantly cheaper than the cost of doing the recruitment themselves.” For more information and to register your details, visit: www.grad-central.co.uk
ON THE ROAD ONCE MORE TO FIGHT FOR A FAIRER FUNDING SYSTEM On Wednesday 18th March I travelled to London along with Dave Anson, Sarah Keddie and Matt Ward to meet our MP, Rob Marris, in Parliament. Yes, real Parliament!! This was part of an NUS day of action around a fairer funding system. Sabbatical Officers around the country made appointments to meet with their MP on that day, who we were all fully briefed for by NUS. This followed news stories from the day before, which brought the shocking news that Universities UK (UUK) had announced that two thirds of Vice Chancellors across the country had admitted that they wanted to raise the cap on tuition fees. Luckily we know our Vice Chancellor is not one of those. Rob and I had met before, so he knew me and he almost certainly knew what I was coming for. Once we settled out on the terrace for a cup of tea we got down to business. I asked Rob if he thought that the funding system was too complex for students and institutions to understand. He said that he didn’t think so, as after all, students are studying for a degree, so the forms and funding entitlements should not be too difficult for their educated minds. We found this a little harsh and we would like to challenge him to try applying!
Fr om Left: Matt Ward, Sarah Keddie, MP Rob Mar ris, Dave Anson and Car oline Rose
I next moved on to ask him what his views were on a National Bursary Scheme. Some of you may know that you may be entitled to a bursary from the University. This is free money that you do not have to pay back. The University over the past two years have under spent on bursaries by over two million pounds! That’s your money, which they get to keep! Rob said that he felt any under spend should be sent back to a central government pot. He also said that he would be willing to look at the logistics of a National Scheme. So that was a win!
The next topic, I just couldn’t stop myself from touching on was Equivalent and Lower Level Qualification (ELQ) funding. Last year the government announced that they would no longer fund a student to do a degree that already had a degree, to put it in its simplest terms. When I explained different scenarios of this to Rob he did see that the picture was not black and white where funding is concerned. However, he does believe that people should only get “one bite of the cherry” so to speak and if they want to do more degrees it should come out of our own pockets. I asked if Rob believed that, even now, with people needing to re-skill and retrain due to the recession. He said, “yes, as we should be giving those who didn’t get the chance to go to University, their chance”. Rob was asked about Graduate Tax and he seemed to think that the current system was almost like that already as you pay back a percentage of your earnings. We explained that it would also be a relative amount to a graduate’s wage, which he didn’t seem overly keen on. We asked him whether he would be willing to put his name to Early Day Motion 1085 which is around fairer funding. He said he could not sign it, but would give us his views on it instead. I heard from him last week and he said he broadly supports the Union. In total, we were at Parliament for around an hour and a half, and I really can’t think what else we talked about! Anyhow, it was a great opportunity and we must keep funding at the top of our agenda. In a survey I did with our students, funding came top of welfare concerns. It’s on your agenda, it’s on ours and it must be on the Governments and University’s. Caroline Rose Welfare and Campaigns VP firstname.lastname@example.org
EXECUTIVE BLOGS Cheryl McGivern - President (Finance & Governance) Hey Peeps, So what I have been up to and what I have I got planned for the rest of the year? We held some Open Meetings to see what students from Walsall and City campus wanted for their end of year entertainment, we ran with some of the ideas that was put to us and hopefully in the middle of May we will be hosting an end of year entertainment event that you will all be happy with. We all headed up to Blackpool for NUS Annual Conference, so that as a Sabbatical team we are all aware of the National campaigns and strategies that we have to adhere to to make our SU work. We had a blast and we can now update our Union and the University with national improvements that was put in place here. Anyway, hope you all have a great ending to a great year…all the best! Cheryl Contact Cheryl at: email@example.com Dave Anson - Sites & Democracy VP Well the end of year is upon us. Whether it’s your first year here or the end of your time at this University, I’m sure it has been a memorable one and the highlights of this year will remain with you for the rest of your life. As this is my last blog as Sites and Democracy Vice President, I would like to thank all the fantastic characters I have met over the year and encourage anyone who isn’t already involved in the Union to become active as it was the best decision of my life. Over the past year I’ve learnt many things and my advice for Chris Jones are words from a wise man I’ve heard many times this year – “in times of adversity keep smiling and keep your chin up”. I wish Chris the best of luck, hope everyone has a fantastic summer, be cool, stay safe. Peace out. Contact Dave at: firstname.lastname@example.org Eric Potts - Sports & Societies VP Hey guys, I hope you all took part in Green Week! Well since the last time you heard from me I’ve been working hard to help improve both the Sports and Societies. I also had the opportunity for all teams to fundraise by helping out at ‘Walsall Wednesday’, which was a great success. I’m currently working on two main projects; the first is hosting the Sports Awards/End of Year Party on Walsall Campus to help raise much needed money for the Athletic Union. The second is a joint campaign with Caroline Rose called ‘Change for Life’. It’s a government campaign to help raise awareness of how little changes in diet and lifestyle can help make you healthier. Contact Eric at: email@example.com
Caroline Rose - Welfare & Campaigns VP Hi all, since the last “Green Issue” I have run a massively successful Green Week, I have hosted a day for International Women’s Day and I have been helping out with Elections by being at a ballot station every day during voting! I also went to London to meet with MP Rob Marris to discuss funding. I want this to be my goodbye message; I have had a great 4 years involved in the Union. From School Rep, to Council Chair to Vice President, every step has been a challenge. I was loved and hated all at the same time! It’s been amazing. I have learned so much and met some great people. I wish the Union all the best, and must thank all the staff for their support, tissues and hot chocolate! I hope to keep an eye on the Union. Its time for big changes and it’s really exciting for the new team. Adios!! Contact Caroline at: firstname.lastname@example.org Ellen Marshall - City Officer Hey everyone, hope you are all enjoying this semester so far! Just want to say a massive “thanks” to everyone that voted in the Elections...who ever you voted for! There were a lot of votes this year and it is really good to see that so many people care about the Union. I am really happy that I can carry on as City Officer for another year. It would be really good to hear from you and the things you'd like to see around City and Compton Campus. Contact Ellen at: email@example.com :) xoxo Alex Blower - Activities Officer “Thank you” to everyone who voted me back in as Activities Officer woop! I’m really looking forward to next year and am excited for the changes that are going to be made. I know quite a lot of you have come to the Activities Centre asking about Bestmates. We are now recruiting for the following academic year, so register your interest by e-mailing: firstname.lastname@example.org. It’s really fantastic that we’ve had so much interest in Bestmates already and if that level of enthusiasm for the new starters carries over to September we should have the best Fresher’s Week ever! Contact Alex at: email@example.com 17
THOUSANDS OF STUDENTS SEEK GOLDEN GLORY IN YORKSHIRE! British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS) Championships - English Institute of Sport British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS) provides a wide ranging sporting programme in 50 sports to member institutions all over Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The BUCS Championships was in Sheffield, this time with even more sports and competitors than ever before. The 24-sport event saw 5500 student athletes from all over the country descend upon Sheffield and Leeds from 11th-15th March, with each of them hoping to leave with a much coveted BUCS gold medal.
TRACK & FIELD CLUB The team had some highs and lows from BUCS Indoors. The AU sent had 12 athletes up to Sheffield ready to compete and represent Wolves across a number of disciplines including: 60m, 60m hurdles, long jump, shot and 1500m to name a few. The team suffered a few set backs and injuries on the day but performed extremely well against competition from Bath, Brunel and Loughborough with a number of athletes qualifying for semi and finals places. After finishing respectably in Sheffield, the team are now looking forward to competing at BUCS Outdoors which is being held in Bedford during 1st-5th May. The Track and Field Club have received a sponsorship bursary from Enterprise Graduate Recruitment Ltd. Ben Shar man
Laura Gomer y
SU APOLOGY The Editor and Marketing Team here at the Studentsâ€™ Union would like to make a sincere apology to the Aikido club for misspelling the martial art in the previous issue of Crywolf. 18
BUCS KNOCKOUT FINALSWOMEN’S MEN’S MIDLANDS CONFERENCE CUP: BASKETBALL vs COVENTRY UNIVERSITY BASKETBALL MEN’S WEDNESDAY 18TH MARCH WALSALL SPORTS CENTRE
It was a nail biting match with teams going basket for basket, with the home crowd behind them cheering them on! However, it was Wolves’ day as the boys repeated the trend set by the women in the BUCS Trophy. Wolves emerged champions beating Coventry 66-61. Both the Men's and Women's Basketball players and coaches have remained dedicated and committed training relentlessly in recent months and as the results show, the teams are not a force to be reckoned with. Further to this, the Men's team have been lucky enough to be sponsored by Walsall Chiropractic Health Clinic this season who, without their continued support, the club would not have found it possible to develop and achieve the outstanding level of success it has.
Congratulations to the Women's Basketball team who had a blazing final against St Marys in the BUCS Trophy Final. It was an amazing game with many close calls leaving spectators at the edge of their seats and the winner, which was anyone's guess, until the final 20 seconds. Final score Wolves 72 - St Marys 67, a fantastic result after the team lost out in the final last year to the University of Stirling.
CLUMBER PARK DUATHLON Natasha Blunt a Triathlete supported by the University of Wolverhampton Sports Excellence Scholarship Scheme has flown the flag for the individual event by finishing first in her age category and a respectable 106th (from 255) at the Clumber Park Duathlon on the 7th March. Natasha competed against over 250 male and female Triathletes with a vast range of age and experience, this is an outstanding result and in her current form Natasha is set to achieve great things after recently coming back from injury. Clumber Park is with little doubt one of the most picturesque settings for a duathlon that you are ever likely to race on. A truly spectacular National Trust Country Park with acre upon acre of woodland, whether racing the sprint or the classic distance race you will not be short of some beautiful countryside on which to feast your eyes. As with every high comes a low and the Clumber Classic Duathlon is no exception - though it does save its low until last. Natasha raced in the classic event which combined a 10k run with a 40k bike ride and finishing with a 5k run. For more information about the Athletic Union, contact: Rebecca Millar, Sports Officer, at: firstname.lastname@example.org 19
FEED YOUR MIND It’s dissertation hand in time, exam time and probably the most stressful time of your course for you third years. You may have heard of the BBC campaign ‘Headroom’? Well if you haven’t, you soon will as we are bringing it to your Union this month. The idea behind the campaign is to encourage good mental health. If you eat well, your mind is fed and you will feel altogether better than eating those pot noodles washed down with endless beer and coffee.
So, “how do we get students to switch their shopping basket?” I hear you ask. Well, have you ever seen Channel 4’s Come Dine with Me? We want you to take part in one! Basically you get your friends together and take it in turns to cook. We are calling them ‘Grub Clubs’. I have voting cards, chef ’s hats and lots of other fun stuff to help you along - all courtesy of the BBC. It will be fun, you could even do it for four Sundays in a row, there is nothing quite so yummy as a Sunday roast. For more details, contact me at: email@example.com or drop into the Activities Centre at City Campus to see me in person. Caroline Rose Welfare and Campaigns VP