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o r t p re Dundee University Students Association (DUSA)

Annual Report 2010/11

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11

Our Vision

Our Mission

Our Promise to Members

DUSA represents students at the University of Dundee in academic and welfare issues, recreational activities and other matters related to the student experience. Our plan is to continue to improve all aspects of the student life at Dundee.

DUSA is the representative arm of Dundee University students. The student body represents a community, with common values and purpose. In addition to providing welfare and recreational services, the input of members into our operations is seen as essential and that input is encouraged through representation.

Our Vision We continue to be voted as the best student association in Scotland! This means that we must continue to improve and enhancing the services, advice and support we provide. We want to leave a positive and lasting impression with students that will remain with you beyond your time in Dundee.

Our Values DUSA aims to provide an excellent service to students in the following areas – Representation, Advice and Guidance, Opportunity, Activity, Community and Communication and Engagement.

DUSA’s vision is to be the number one students’ association in the UK by 2016.

DUSA provides a wide range of services and amenities for students across campus.

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The IWall features 8 computers, which are free for all of our members to use to surf the internet and keep up to date with the University and DUSA.

Members can grab a bite to eat in any of our across campus cafés, such as Air (seen below) or Liar bar.

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11


Outgoing President’s Statement 2010-11 has been a significant year of change for DUSA, and we hope that most of these developments are outlined in this Annual Report. It’s the first time we have produced a publication of this sort, and probably something we should’ve been doing for a long time. This is an opportunity for us to communicate significant progress for DUSA and to keep you up-to-date with what all the main student groups on campus have been doing. Over the course of the year we have hosted guests such as Gordon Brown, took on students as interns for the first time, opened a radio station, increased our election turnout, rewarded excellent teaching across campus and expanded what advice we offer to students in private housing. It is safe to say that DUSA is in a better position than it was 12 months ago, and I am sure the incoming Executive team will be saying the same at this point in 2012. Student representation and activity are really at the heart of what we do and it goes without saying that we wouldn’t be able to achieve any of this without our members. The students of the University of Dundee and increasingly amongst the most engaged and active across Scotland, as you should see in this report. Going forward, DUSA has implemented a five year strategy and new plans to develop our provision of advice and guidance to students. Our aim is to be the best students’ association in the UK by 2016. This might seem ambitious but we are already 4th! The only thing is – we need our members to help us achieve that. So take a look at this report, see what you can get involved in and, most importantly, let us know how we can get better. Thank you to everyone for a great year. Best of luck for the future.

Chris Browne Acting President 2010-11

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11

About Us Dundee University Students’ Association, referred to as “DUSA” or “The Union,” is the students’ association, legal representative and charitable organisation for matriculated students of the University of Dundee. As a charitable organisation, we exist to serve our members – the students of the University. This is achieved in a variety of ways; assisting you in seeking private accommodation, funding student societies, providing reasonably priced catering and ensuring you have a safe venue to enjoy a night out in any one of our affordable clubs or bars. We work closely with the University to ensure that you have the best possible experience whilst you’re a student. The Student Executive Committee work from Level 4 in DUSA and are responsible for the overall management and administration of DUSA, liaising with the University at every level, running campaigns, providing students with opportunities to become more involved with the academic community and much more. When it comes to running the operational aspect of DUSA – our bars, shops, nightclubs and other facilities – we’re lucky to have an expert team who all work hard to ensure that you have the facilities and services which represent your needs. We currently employ 60 full time staff and 185 students in a variety of roles including bars, catering, marketing and customer safety. Operating a 7 day week throughout term time, DUSA is usually open 9am – late, with the exception of Sundays and Mondays. DUSA’s senior management team work from Cross Row, and are responsible for finance, human resources, operations, health, safety and the general management of the Association.

Students enjoy one of many live DJ sets hosted in DUSA’s largest nightclub, Mono.

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DUSA & the University of Dundee The relationship between DUSA and the University is formalised through a Memorandum of Understanding which is reviewed every two years. At the beginning of this year the University Secretary Jim McGeorge, along with the President and Deputy President of DUSA, worked together to make changes to the MOU. These included working closer with the University’s Student Advice Team to provide excellent welfare advice and support to the student body.

The Union “The Union” is often used to describe our commercial activities: events, clubs, bars, catering and shops. Running a successful commercial outfit allows us to put more money back into things like societies, media groups and representation – so we rely largely on your custom and support to perform to the high standard of which we are now internationally renowned. Never forget that every penny spent in DUSA is re-invested in our members. We have four shops throughout campus serving the day to day needs of our student population and sell everything from sandwiches and snacks to stationery and hoodies. ‘Premier at the Union’ is recognised as one of Scotland’s top convenience stores and over the last few years has won a number of national awards. Cantina Express, situated in the Duncan of Jordanstone building, was fully renovated last year and now also features a fast food operation. The Library Café has been a major success this year, providing students and staff alike with a place to study, meet with friends and enjoy a wide range of food and beverages.

“The Union” serves a wide variety of beverages, including soft drinks, coffee and alcohol.

DUSA is open to its members throughout the summer months, seen in the Summer Air Menu below.

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11


DUSA also operate over 60 vending machines throughout the Campus again serving the on the go snacking needs of the students. Our nightclubs, Mono and Floor 5, play host to a wide range of events, often hosted by student DJs or promoters. Our legendary night, Skint, continues to see around 1,500 students through the doors each Tuesday evening. Throughout the day, our members can grab fresh baguettes in Liar bar or enjoy a meal and a coffee with friends in Air. DUSA continues to provide diverse facilities whilst acknowledging that your disposable income is treasured. In return, our excellent facilities and services are repeatedly used by our members, indicating that we are doing something right!

Customer Safety An unfortunate reality of any organization lies in taking disciplinary measures against those who breach its rules, and the enforcement measures which uphold them; but it should be obvious why this is needed to keep a safe environment for our students. It goes without saying that our Customer Safety team is vital to your enjoyment of your nights out. While it’s easy to only think about the personal inconvenience of being asked to leave for drinking too much, students understand that this is only done when necessary.

Our Customer Safety team ensure your safety whilst on DUSA premises.

Night bus Service DUSA offer a night bus service regularly shuttling students to and from the Union. This service has been a great success again this year and offers students a safe route from the Union to their front door.

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11

Governance & Elections (AGM) Message from the Chair of the Board of Trustees I am delighted to have been invited to contribute here to this DUSA Annual Report. The DUSA board of Trustees is made up of seven executive members drawn from the student population and duly elected to office annually by their peers; together with six ‘external’ volunteer trustees who may each serve for a maximum of six years. The role of the DUSA board of Trustees is to actively oversee the effectiveness of management’s policies and decisions, including the execution of its strategies. While its paramount duty is to DUSA’s stakeholders (all the students of the University of Dundee), the Trustees recognize that the long-term interests of DUSA, the students and the university are advanced by responsibly addressing, as appropriate, the concerns of other stakeholders and interested parties including employees, customers, suppliers, and official government bodies such as OSCR the charities regulator. The Trustees also have a duty and responsibility to foster, promote and ensure good governance. Governance is the process by which the Trustees ensure that the organisation is effectively and properly run. Governance is not necessarily about doing; it is about ensuring things are done. In an organisation such as DUSA, it is almost inevitable that board members will be involved not only in making decisions and monitoring work, but in doing some (or all!) of that work. As a relatively new external trustee (of two years standing) I see the role of any university as providing a stimulating, safe, relevant, provocative, and challenging environment to encourage learning, debate and the acquisition of knowledge, and ultimately to contribute to the growth, development and maturity of every student. DUSA is an integral part of the University of Dundee and has its own invaluable role to play in helping to fulfil this objective. In addition I am very proud of the work accomplished this year by the Executive, not only in the successful, on-going profitable running of the Union but also in the work done to champion student causes on campus, for the stance taken on tuition fees, the significant developments in student media, and the continued work to champion the need for a robust and caring student welfare support programme. It is indeed my privilege to serve as an external trustee and acting Chair of DUSA. Personally sometimes I think that I derive more from working with the student executive members than perhaps they derive from me; but then maybe this in itself is not a bad situation and could be deemed to be part of my life long learning experience! I look forward with relish to the challenges ahead, to seeing existing projects through to fruition and to working collaboratively with the new executive.

Charles Doeg-Smith Acting Chair, DUSA

Shona Main, External Trustee and Chair, ensures DUSA is run appropriately.

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View of the Union from Airlie Place entrance.

DUSA is continually changing to meet member needs, including the launch of a beer garden on Balfour St from Summer 2011.

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11


DUSA Governance Dundee University Students’ Association is an unincorporated association of members who are chiefly students of the University of Dundee. DUSA’s administration, development and management is entrusted to a Board of Trustees, seven of whom are the elected Executive student officers. The elected student members of the DUSA Board of Trustees are selected on an annual basis by the student body. Every matriculated student of the University has the right to run in elections and to vote. The elections are managed by University staff nominated by the Student Representative Council and are run on the single transferable vote (STV) system. Where students are unhappy with the candidates, they can opt to re-open nominations. Each year DUSA hold elections for School Presidents, the Student Representative Council and the DUSA Executive. Other elections DUSA may hold from time to time include by-elections and the Rector’s election. This year DUSA elected, for the first time ever, an independent head of the SRC, student managers for each of its media departments and an independent student member of University Court. This year DUSA increased turnout across the board in its elections, with the amount of students voting increasing in the SRC elections by over 300%. The total turnout in the 2011 Exec/School President/Media elections was 2,346 (14% of the student body). This includes all students that opened an election ballot through the online voting system provided by the Library and Learning Centre. The elections are a great opportunity for candidates and their friends to get creative in convincing the student body why they should elect them to a position of responsibility. This year we saw free pizza, flash mobs, bouncy castles and, of course, the obligatory free sweets that are a traditional method of canvassing at Dundee. However beyond the colourful and exciting campaigns, there is a serious side to all of this. We continue to strive to make our elections the most open, transparent and democratic in Scotland in order to attract the highest quality candidates to representative positions. For 2011-12 DUSA has re-written its bye-laws on elections to improve the process for all and continue to increase student engagement with these processes every year.

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AGM / EGM Our Annual General Meeting in 2010-11 raised two important issues for the attention of the student body. This year students also called an Extraordinary General Meeting of DUSA in semester 2. Both the AGM and EGM failed to achieve the quorum required to pass their motions and, as such, they were delegated to the SRC for approval. The first motion involved the Royal Bank of Scotland’s presence on campus and their alleged unethical investment history. The SRC voted to explore a public information campaign on the banking sector’s investment policies. The AGM also supported a student campaign against proposed University reforms to the Disability access centre. Student pressure ensured that the service offered here was protected in future. The EGM motion asked DUSA to support all anti-cuts campaigns affecting students in the immediate future. After a lively discussion at SRC, it was decided that DUSA would look at supporting organisations on a caseby-case basis, but re-affirmed its support for all groups campaigning against cuts in higher education.

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11

Representation At DUSA we have one of the best student representation systems in Scotland. With students at every level of the University decision making process, we are seen as central to the success of the University. In 2010-11 we elected more students to official positions across the University than ever before, ranging from class representatives right up to the University Court.

Student Representative Council The SRC exists to set policy for DUSA and is entirely run by students. The Council is your forum for raising concerns that will be heard by those at the highest levels. It is a continually improving source of democracy at the University. Take at our section on the SRC for more on exactly what they have achieved this year. Remember that the Council is here for you and all students are welcome to attend meetings, even if they aren’t elected members.

SRC Elections In September we held the biggest ever elections to the Student Representative Council. New roles such as SRC Councillor (without portfolio) were created, student societies were given a bigger say and we elected our first ever independent Chairperson. One of the biggest successes of the election campaign was the level of continuity from previous years but also the engagement with freshers. Turnout went up by 300% to around 1500 to elect the most democratic SRC in DUSA history.

The results of the DUSA Elections were announced in Air Bar, where the winners celebrated with the current Exec.

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The ‘Inspire’ Awards In 2010-11 students were given the opportunity to directly reward their lecturers for the first time. The DUSA ‘Inspire’ awards recognised excellence in inspirational and innovative teaching, student advice and academic feedback. The awards were a great success with hundreds of nominations received. The winners were presented with trophies at an awards ceremony in May. Previously only academic staff selected the winners in these awards, however at every stage of this process students were able to nominate and ultimately decide on the winners of each award by being part of the judging panel. In contrast to the University awards, there was no financial prize – just the honour of receiving plaudits from the student body. We hope that, going forward, these awards become the most prestigious at the University of Dundee. The winners were as follows: Most inspirational teaching: Dr Suzanne Zeedyk (Psychology) Most innovative teaching: Sharon Tonner (Education, Social Work and Community Education) Best student advisor or personal tutor: Dr Stephen Reynolds (Engineering, Physics and Maths) Best teacher for assessment and feedback: Dr Gerhard May (Life Sciences)

Election campaigns involved bouncy castles, BBQ’s and even flashmobs.

The proud winners of the inaugural “Inspire” Awards celebrate their accolades.

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11

University committees

Get the most out of DUSA

Student representation on University committees was improved once again in 2010-11. These groups are driven by feedback from students and seek to improve the student experience across the campus. An additional student member was also added to the University’s highest governing body, Court. The new position is entirely independent of DUSA and students elected 2nd year Law Student Matthew Kendrick at the elections in March.

This year the Executive got out on the road and held ‘Exec on the Road’ events across campus that allowed students to ask them pretty much anything about University life. The Exec worked out of locations such as the Library and the Dalhousie building, completely open to all and any student queries. They also held ‘Ask the Exec’ surgery events and tried to encourage students to come into the DUSA building for a free coffee and a quick chat about any problems they were having. While these events did not have the uptake we would have wanted, they allowed us to better understand some of the problems students were having and we will take these experiences forward next year with new and innovative methods of communicating with the student body.

Students continued to contribute to the University’s quality assurance processes, one of the most effective avenues for improving the learning and teaching experience here. School Presidents sat on School and College management boards and were commended for their increasingly positive influence. The Executive sat on all University programme reviews, recommending positive changes to specific modules at the University. Student reps continue to have a direct input into working groups on assessment and feedback and the University Learning and Teaching strategy. The importance of student representation is now enshrined in University policy as part of a ‘Joint Statement on Representation’ that can be viewed on the University website.

Halls representation Students in University residences were given more power this year to organise their own events and have an impact on the quality of the student experience in Heathfield, Belmont, Seabraes and West Park.


The Executive also released a 20 point manifesto of promises in September and responded to it early in 2011. While not all promises were fulfilled, every effort was made to make sure that the majority of our commitments were followed through. We made significant changes on campus and the openness and transparency of a Manifesto always kept us on the right track. The ‘DUSA Matters’ publication explained to students, for the first time, exactly how DUSA works and what we are here for. We hope these initiatives encouraged all our members to recognise that DUSA is here for them and that we need you to keep us right so that you can get the most out of your Union.

The Student Support Worker, Iliyan Stefanov, is responsible for the welfare and advice support of all students in University residences. He can be found in the DUSA building and works closely with the Exec to improve life in halls. His dedicated team of Student Support Assistants all live in residences and work to support students in any problems they might face. In March 2011, DUSA’s Events and Marketing Department worked with the Halls Committees to organise the inaugural ‘May Ball’. This was an all building event with free admission to those who lived in halls of residence. The Ball attracted 850 students making it by far the most successful Halls Committee event to date.

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11

Student Welfare Advice and Guidance Over the past few years DUSA has continually improved the way in which it provides advice and support to students. A number of external audits and student surveys have led to an overhaul of our strategy in this area. Top of the list is co-operation with the University and making sure that we don’t double up on what we do. Sometimes our members want to speak to the University about major issues and concerns, but sometimes a friendly face and a helping hand from a fellow student or member of the Executive is needed. From 2011-12 DUSA should be able to provide a more focused and appropriate level of support to its members.

Advice and Support Centre In Fresher’s Week 2010 we opened an Advice and Support Centre for new students to come and speak to any member of the Executive about their experiences settling into the University. During the first few weeks of term, the room was extremely popular and helped many students resolve problems ranging from finding the nearest McDonalds to matriculating on their new course. In 2011-12 you will find a whole range of different events and activities held in this room ranging from Careers Service outreach sessions to sexual health campaigns, free legal advice and even the opportunity to get a (cheap) Shiatsu massage!

Housing and accommodation This year we enhanced our links with the local council and worked together to provide students with a standardised lease agreement and property checklist. The lease shows you exactly what the landlord should agree to when you move into a new flat and ensures that they aren’t trying to cut any corners. We also offered the opportunity

Our Welfare officer Amy regularly held campaign stalls in the foyer of DUSA, including the Smoking Awareness campaign as seen below.

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for any students to come in and discuss their lease agreements with us, should they have concerns. DUSA is also the only place to come on campus to advertise a flat or get a recommendation on a good landlord. Alongside actively promoting the Dundee City Council Accredited Landlord scheme, in 2011-12 we hope to launch a flat finder website and lobby government to introduce a rent deposit protection scheme in Scotland.

Director of Student Operations In September 2010, the University appointed a new Director of Student Operations – Lorna Jones. DUSA have worked closely with Lorna to make sure you get the most out of what is provided here on campus. As a result of our work with Lorna this year we hope to provide an out of hours support service, a clear one-stop-shop enquiry desk and more accessible online resources by the start of term in 2011.

Student Advice Team The University’s Student Advice Team is located in the DUSA building on Level 4. The University see DUSA as the central point on campus for student activity and thus they use our space to deliver these important services. The Advice Team can answer any question you have about University life or your own personal problems. They also run exciting campaigns and events. Every now and then you might even get a freebie from them! In the coming year we are going to provide them with an improved reception in the DUSA building, some private meeting rooms and space to run their campaigns. The Advice Team also have some exciting plans of their own including a Citizens Advice Bureau outreach centre. If you ever have any problems, remember that the DUSA building is your first point of call.

Free stress balls entitled “DUSA say Relax” were handed out to students throughout the exam period.

Gary (VPCampaigns) and Amy speak to students during Refreshers Fayre about volunteering and welfare campaigns.

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11

Panel for Financial Aid The Panel for Financial aid provides students with advice and guidance on their financial situation and can ultimately provide some funds to keep them going when things get tough. A student representative sits on this panel and, in the past, DUSA and the University have been praised for being one of the few institutions to include a student on this Panel.

Welfare Campaigns Safe Sex We took a creative approach to our welfare campaigns, beginning with a condom tree on the first weekend of Freshers Week. One night stand cut-outs were also used to suggest what may be said about a person after a one night stand, the students responded incredibly well.


Mental Health Stress balls made promoting “DUSA say relax”, encouraged students to take a breather during tough studying and provided an entertaining campaign related to mental health. Drink Spiking A drink spiking awareness campaign involved the Student Welfare Team placing stirrers in students’ drinks, labelled “next time it could be drugs”. Many students were shocked to find they hadn’t noticed anyone doing this. A stall was held with the local police and Drink Aware, raising awareness of how much a person can drink. Smoking Our smoking campaign tackled the effects to ones health, rather than telling students not to. Raising the awareness of the risks involved and using props provided by the NHS made the campaign more successful.

The DUSA Executive Committee advocating safe sex amongst the student body

We took a creative approach to our welfare campaigns, beginning with a condom tree on the first weekend of Freshers Week.

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11

Campaigns Our Future

Keep Your Library Clean

In 2010 the coalition government in England introduced increased tuition fees, triggering a funding crisis up north in Scotland. From day one DUSA actively lobbied all our local politicians and representatives through the ‘Our Future’ campaign and managed to get a commitment from both our MPs to vote against the increased fees in Westminster. The ‘Our Future’ campaign raised awareness of the key issues in the higher education funding debate and was widely recognised for its unique and honest approach to the discussion. We were even invited onto an early debate on BBC Radio Scotland, alongside the NUS, on the morning of the vote in Westminster. Going forward DUSA will continue to lobby local politicians to vote against any introduction of fees in Scotland and, importantly, encourage government to recognise that Uni is far from free in Scotland and student support must be improved.

As the Main Library gets busier, it becomes more difficult for the staff to keep the place clean. With all the great innovations that have been brought in over the past few years, including the Library Café, students can now pretty much spend a whole day there without missing a meal. However with all these great services students now have a greater responsibility to keep the area clean. As we noticed rubbish piling up over the year, we teamed up with the Library and Learning Centre and ran a poster campaign within the Library to encourage students to keep their library clean.

Change? Lecture Series This year DUSA organised the first ever ‘Change?’ lecture series discussing issues that affecting both the University community and the wider world. Uniquely, the series featured members of the University academic staff. The idea was to bring the greatest minds from around campus into DUSA and remind you that they are on your very doorstep. DUSA showed that it can bring the academic and student community closer together.

Fairtrade DUSA and the University hold joint Fairtrade status and Dundee is a proud Fairtrade campus. Every year we work towards making Fairtrade products available across the University. Fairtrade Fortnight is held in February, where there are information stalls and events of an ethical and sustainable theme. Events included film viewings on the campus green, free food, a chocolate fountain, Fairtrade fruit and microwave cakes in a mug! A DUSA representative also sits on the Fairtrade Community Council. This is a steering group charged with advocating Fairtrade issues across Dundee. Its remit includes lobbying MPs and MSPs and encouraging local businesses and groups all over Dundee to embrace Fairtrade products.

Topics came from different schools across the University covering everything from War Crimes with Dr Padraig McAuliffe of the Law school, the History of Irish Independence with Dr John Regan of the History Department through to Education and new Digital Technology with Janice Aitken from Duncan of Jordanstone Art College.

Fairtrade Fortnight saw a wide variety of innovative recipes and campaigns across campus.

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Fairtrade stall being held in the foyer of DUSA.

Incoming VP Student Welfare Thomas Dale tries out the famous “Cake in a Mug”

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11


Student Representative Council A New Look

We’ve Got Your back

This year the Student Representative Council (SRC) changed its make-up. For the first time we elected an independent SRC Chair from the student body and added three new SRC Councillors (without portfolio). They were tasked with ensuring the effective and efficient operations of the Council. Furthering this goal, the SRC delegated its role of society affiliation to the Society Council, developed a strategic plan to increase student awareness of the SRC, and pushed for all councillors to take on a more active campaigning role.

The SRC has lobbied against any cuts that would affect your University experience. They supported DUACAN (Dundee University Anti-Cuts Action Network) and the University and College Union day of strike action, as well as ensuring student anger at the new central timetabling were heard and addressed. On top of this, significant changes to DUSA’s bye-laws were made to better serve students – ensuring every student has a voice both inside DUSA and their School.

That’s Not All Folks

A Quiet Place to Study In what is perhaps the greatest SRC achievement in recent years, the Council and its sub-committees successfully lobbied for extended library opening hours. What started as a trial period, with the Library opening to 2.30am each night, has now become a permanent enhancement to your University experience. For many years, students have shown a desire for a 24 hour study space, and this extension represents a significant step forwards.

The SRC deals with one-off issues in every meeting to ensure all student needs are met. Some of these included taking steps to sell academic supplies in the Library and provide additional nutritional information on Gluten-free and Halal meals. We took action to change the branding of club nights in response to student complaints, appointed a new external Trustee and instituted a fairer fine system for those caught misbehaving in the Union.

Progressive Thinking What began as a general commitment to examine more sustainable operations for DUSA became a powerful hallmark of the 2010-11 SRC. A Buy-Right Steering Group was introduced, with the task of seeking out Fairtrade products for DUSA to offer our students. On top of this, the SRC has voted to affiliate to the Worker’s Rights Consortium alongside the University. Together, we’ll help to promote acceptable working conditions in a global economy and ensure our own products meet higher ethical standards.

DUSA works with a wide range of University staff to ensure that you get the best out of your time at University.

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SRC members actively took part in the protests against potential cuts to Higher Education.

Members of SRC take part in a “study-in” held by DUSA and Dundee University Anti Cuts Action Network.

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11

Student Societies New Societies

Positive Changes

This year has seen an unprecedented twenty new societies afďŹ liate to DUSA, which include hobby groups, charities, academic and international groups. This means that there are now 84 societies, with many more in the process of becoming afďŹ liated.

In 2010-11, the way in which societies operate and organise was completely reformed. We have moved towards using online forms for Funding Applications, expanded electronic book keeping and introduced an events request form, which ensures that all aspects of any event are addressed. The Society Funding Council also met on a more regular basis and streamlined the way in which we dish out funds for important activities.

Bar Tending Society Call to action Diplomats at Dundee

The information provided to societies at the start of the year has been improved and many common queries have been addressed, such as questions about room bookings in DUSA and on campus, ďŹ nance, transport and event management.

European law students association Hong Kong Society Ice skating Juggling Club Law clinic society

This is also the ďŹ rst year we have put together an annual survey for societies to allow for direct feedback. Results will be available from the t end of June 2011.

Leisure Biking Society Lit & Film Society Mathematical Biology




Medicine in Malawi Projects cts


Mooting society Societies

Paintball society R.A.I.D.

In 2010/11, societies at Dundee s held bigger and h better events that b ever before. Some ev of these are outlined overleaf. ov

Read Dundee Society y Save the Children Society Stop Aids Society Surgery society Videogames Society

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The Annual Freshers Fayre was once again a huge success, with a variety of societies and clubs holding stalls throughout the Union.

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LIP Theatre hold their annual show in DUSA, showing their talent in the shot below.

Dundee Uni Art Society provide the traditional â&#x20AC;&#x153;freebiesâ&#x20AC;? given out at Freshers Fayre.

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11


Events and Successes READ Dundee - book drive

Annual Awards

This society spent the last two semesters collecting over 30,000 books to send to Uganda. The books are used to educate children. If the books collected are not suitable for teaching then they are sold to help fund the following year’s book drive

This year, DUSA hosted the Annual Awards Dinner, turning Floor 4 into a glamorous venue fit for a red carpet event. The awards recognise the hard work, dedication and achievements of societies, student representatives and media outlets. From student debaters to journalists and University staff, the Awards Dinner had a varied attendance. The prestigious Society of the Year award was picked up by the International Society, who has worked relentlessly over the past year to provide interesting events and campaigns for the University community. The Outstanding Contribution to Student Life was presented to Academic Secretary Dr Ian Francis, in acknowledgement of his dedication to the student body and representation over a number of decades.

Across the year a number of different events raised money and awareness of READ, including a naked calendar, band night and many other events. The society also won a trophy from READ International, the charity, for best campus book drive. READ also won Best New Society in the DUSA Awards.

OPSOC - Jesus Christ Superstar The Operatic and Musical society’s annual production this year was Jesus Christ Superstar. It was a spectacular performance on the musical’s fortieth anniversary. Selling out 3 or their 4 nights, the society won Best Event at this year’s Annual Awards.

Anime – D-CON D-CON is one of the largest Anime conventions in Scotland, organised by student society D-CON. Over four thousand people from across the UK came to view the stalls, join in on competitions, hear interesting speakers and enjoy the free games room. There were even some Storm Troopers and Transformers walking about DUSA.

D.A.R.E. - Jam wrestling D.A.R.E. is a society that’s always busy, winning the Most Active Society award this year. Holding different events including bake sales, band nights and balls to ceilidhs, abseils and UV Jam Wrestling. All of the funds raised for DARE events go directly to the various charity missions undertaken by students over the summer months. Any students are responsible then for paying for their own flights and accommodation.

This year was the first year that societies could nominate each other for the DUSA Awards. We provided an online form and used a panel consisting of the Sports Union President and the Chair of the Student Representative Council to help decide the winners. This year’s winners were: Graduate Skills Award Rebecca Anne McLennan Debator of the Year Iain Menzies Most Progressive Society History Society Most Active Society D.A.R.E. Best New Society Read Dundee Best Society Event OPSOC – Jesus Christ Superstar Society of the Year International Society Society Achievement Award Julie Danskin Student Journalist of the Year The Rock Show Outstanding Contribution to student life Dr Ian Francis

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11

Student Media DUSA Media

Discover Radio

In 2010/11 DUSA expanded student media through the development of three successful media outlets; Discover Radio, DUSATV and The Magdalen.

Discover Radio really took off in 2010/11, with a significant amount of time dedicated by staff to getting the project off the ground. A launch party on the 12th October saw a great deal of press attention towards the new radio station, with local band The View there to officially cut the ribbon. From October onwards, the station operated from Monday – Saturday, 9am – 12am.

The newly formed brand DUSAMedia was highly successful this year, and resulted in the creation of a DUSAMedia hub within DUSA. The space allows our student media groups to work on and develop content for the student community, meet new people and learn new skills.

Month of Media In March this year, DUSA lead a “Month of Media”, which featured seminars led by Paul Holleran (Scottish National Union of Journalists organizer), Kenny Farquharson (Deputy Editor, Scotland on Sunday) and Stephen Naysmith (Social affairs correspondent, The Herald). In addition, local radio DJ’s Charlie Duthie and Gary Elwin from Dundee’s Wave 102FM ran training sessions for Discover Radio presenters.

Discover Radio is run by a team of around 70 contributors from Dundee and Abertay University, as well as Dundee College. Producing around 90 hours of content a week during term time, the online radio station had thousands of visitors. “The Rock Show” won the Contributing Journalist of the Year award at the DUSA Annual Awards, being recognized for their drive and innovation in their ir approach to their ir show.

All DUSAMedia groups are open to any student eager to pursue a career in journalism, or even simply interested in improving their communication skills. Media recruitment drives were held on two occasions in 2010/11, and were open to all students. As neither of the Universities in Dundee currently pursue a program of studies in journalism, DUSAMedia is the perfect opportunity to gain skills and experience in both broadcast and print journalism.

Station manager Sam Gray launches Discover Radio alongside VPC Natalie Coupar and Deputy Station Manager Ewan Nicoll.

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A shot from the final scene of Scotland first student soap Skint, made by DUSATV.

Front cover of Issue 22 of The Magdalen, led by newly elected Editor Finlay Craig.

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11


The Magdalen

In July 2010, DUSATV was repackaged and became a student media outlet producing content by students, for students. With a new motto “See, Capture, Create,” the long process of communicating this change of direction to students began.

The Magdalen is Dundee University Students’ magazine, producing 7 issues per annum. 2010/11 saw 1200 copies being printed on a monthly basis, with an estimated readership of 3500.

To date, the online YouTube channel has 177 subscribers and over 53,000 upload views. With a wide range of content covering live music, short films and promotional content, DUSATV continue to support budding broadcast journalists. The final episode of student soap Skint was premiered in February, and was attended by both town and gown. In 2010/11, DUSATV produced on average 4 videos a month, which is distributed on the DUSATV website, Youtube, the DUSA website and, on occasion, the screens in DUSA.


The magazine is distributed across campus and in a number of cafés, bars and shops on Perth Road. Ran by a team of around 20 contributors, 2010/11 also saw the launch of a website for the magazine. Featuring supplementary articles and interviews, the website has continued to develop and improve throughout the year. In 2010/11, almost 100% of The Magdalen’s income is provided by DUSA, totally around £7,500 per annum. The Magdalen works closely with local bands, businesses and staff at the University with the chief goal of providing content relevant to the student body.

‘the online YouTube channel has 177 subscribers and over 53,000 upload views’

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11

Lectures/Key Events Gordon Brown – ‘Beyond the Crash’

Prospects Day

Out of all the great events we ran this year, the most prestigious guest we hosted was none other than former Prime Minister Gordon Brown. Mr Brown came to the Dalhousie Building for an evening of discussion on his new book ‘Beyond the Crash’, organised by DUSA. The MP for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath spoke with students for around an hour on the global financial crisis and took questions from the audience. What’s more, the questions weren’t pre-screened – let’s see Tony Blair do that! Around 300 students and staff from the University attended the event which was entirely free of charge. The event raised awareness of global issues affecting everyone over the next few decades. Mr Brown took the time to sign hundreds of copies of his book which was on sale at the event proceeds of which went to charity.

2010/11 was a year that saw our members facing increasing graduate unemployment rates. Working with the University Careers Service, DUSA held a Prospects Day in early November, coinciding with the release of Employability Matters. Prospects Day gave students an opportunity to brush up their CV, learn more about MyPDP and speak to a range of employers. Members of staff from across the University were involved in this project, with interesting seminars also covering social networking and the impact it may have on your career prospects.

The Future of Northern Ireland In 2011 DUSA brought representatives from all the political parties in Northern Ireland to Dundee for a debate on the Future of Northern Ireland. It was a picture you probably couldn’t have imagined 10 or 15 years ago with the SDLP’s Conall McDevitt, UUP Deputy Leader John McCallister, Sinn Fein’s Sean Oliver, DUP MLA Alastair Ross and Alliance Party councillor Sheila McQuaid answering questions from an audience of students and staff at the Dalhousie Building. DUSA were proud to organise and host such a successful and progressive event. Not only did it raise awareness of all the issues affecting students from NI, but gave nonIrish students an insight into the Troubles and the peace process that they might not previously have had.

Northern Irish politicians attend the Future of Northern Ireland event.

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Rectors Installation The installation of University of Dundee Rector Brian Cox signalled one of the first major events for student exec. The installation featured performances from student drama society, LIP, as well as speeches from Brian Cox, the University Principal and the Acting President, Chris Browne. Held in Mono, the event was similar to a pep rally, adorned with American-style bunting and balloons. A champagne reception was held in Air bar, where Brian notably spoke to every single student who wished to meet him.

Removal of after 11pm Fee Early this year, the DUSA Executive removed the after 11pm charge of £2 for entering the building. The result of this was that, on the whole, it was cheaper to come to DUSA across the week for social activities. But more importantly, you could now come in to our Bars for a game of pool and a quiet drink without paying the fee that those attending Mono would.

Dundee University Rector Brian Cox speaks at informal installation.

Student LIP theatre company perform comedy show for Rectors Installation.

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11


â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;The MP for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath spoke with students for around an hour on the global financial crisis and took questions from the audienceâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11

Freshers Week/Refreshers Week 2010 DUSA Freshers Week 2010

Freshers Week 2010 Highlights

DUSA has a reputation for organising the best Freshers’ Week in Scotland and 2010/11 was no exception, with ticket sales matching DUSA’s best performing year, 2010. Held from Saturday 4th September – Sunday 12th September, Freshers Week 2010 saw more than 10,000 students through the doors throughout the week. The Principal’s address took place on Monday, where the DUSA President addressed incoming students in the Caird Hall, and the week ended with DUSA’s busiest ever annual Freshers Fayre.

Example Chart-topping Hip Hop artist Example graced the Mono stage to an audience of 1500 on the first Sunday of Freshers Week. This was a highly successful night for DUSA.

Freshers Fair Over 120 societies and companies held stalls at the Annual Freshers’ Fair in DUSA. Spanning the entire building and a marquee held outside, the fair was a huge success with around 3,000 students through the doors eager to grab freebies, join societies and sports clubs, and learn more about DUSA.

Manifesto Launch






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PLUS@Dundee was a huge success and a prime example of how closely DUSA and the University work together.

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The DUSA student executive launched their Manifesto for the year 2010/11, detailing their vision and aims. In addition, the student exec delivered talks to a number of introductory lectures, making students aware of the opportunities in store for them throughout their time at University.

Students have many opportunities to make new friends throughout Freshers Week.

The popular Freshers fair saw the attendance of thousands eager to speak to various societies and companies.

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11

Society Events

Refreshers Week 2010/11

A number of DUSA affiliated societies ran a schedule of events throughout Freshers Week, such as coffee mornings, lunches and talks. This added a great deal of activity to the daytime activity of Freshers Week, which was further bolstered by Plus@Dundee.

Refreshers Week was held from Saturday 8th January – Sunday 23rd of January, starting a whole week earlier than in 2009. Students were given the opportunity to find out more about societies, sports clubs, media groups and companies at Refreshers Fair, where over 60 stalls were held.


The highlights of the week were dance acts Beat A Maxx and Subfocus who both played to audiences of 750. A student-led take on electronic music saw three product design students host a tribute night to Daft Punk and DeadMau5.

‘Freshers Week 2010 saw above 10,000 students through the doors throughout the week’

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11

Engaging with our members As your student association, we are continually looking to develop better methods of engaging with you and listening to your opinions. This year has seen the creation of monthly DUSA Vlogs, a comprehensive social media presence, regular e-mails, focus groups and more regular communication with numerous University staff. We understand the importance of maintaining high end communications with our members, stakeholders and key policy-makers. This year, our newly drafted Communications Strategy allowed us to continue to be at the forefront of campaigns in Scotland and in our communications with you.

Online Communications

Social Networking The DUSA Facebook page currently has over 5,000 “likes” and regularly features information, competitions and pictures from events hosted in DUSA. Over 6,000 monthly users visit the Facebook page, which in turn bolters the website with news stories and events. The DUSA Student Executive Committee currently has a Facebook “friend” page, which has over 1,000 friends. This page is used primarily to communicate campaigns, press features and Representative information to the student body. Twitter has been of key importance to DUSA this year in terms of engaging stakeholders and policy makers in debate, as well as informing them of DUSA activities. @dusa_theunion Twitter account currently has around 650 followers, and chiefly features tweets promoting commercial activities and events.

DUSA Website 2010/11 saw a major overhaul to our website, dusa., which placed a further emphasis on the pastoral activities of the students’ association. With regular news updates linked into our social networking sites and a wide array of key information points for students, dusa. has attracted 150,000 visitors in the past year. On average the site receives over 46,000 per month, experiencing particular increases in Freshers Week, Christmas, Refreshers Week and elections. The launch of the “Inspire” teaching awards also drove further traffic to the newly designed site, which continues to aspire to find the perfect balance between commercial and pastoral activities.

The @DUSAExec Twitter account has over 300 followers, and its tweets again focus more on societies, student media and issues in Higher Education.

Social Media This year, the student Executive Committee launched a Youtube channel, featuring regular video diaries and campaign videos. To date, the Youtube channel has received over 5,000 views in its first year. For publications, DUSA continue to use publication viewing site ISSU, which it then embeds onto With over 5,000 views for 29 publications, our members can view the constitutions, Executive Committee minutes and numerous publications from DUSA Matters to The Magdalen. Flickr is currently embedded into our main site,, where students have the opportunity to comment on photos.

DUSA’s facebook page has fast become the one-stop-shop for all information on DUSA, with well over 5,000 likes to date.

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Employability matters is part of series of collaborative publications with various University departments, such as the Careers Service.

The @DUSAExec twitter page was instrumental throughout the fees debate.

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11



DUSA is continually recognised by external surveys such as the Times Higher Education Student Experience survey and the International Student Barometer as one of the best student unions in the world. However these surveys also serve an important purpose in allowing students to communicate their opinions of the University to the outside world. Of particular importance here is the National Student Survey that asks every ďŹ nal year student about their time at the University. This year we produced a publication called â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;NSS Mattersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; that encouraged students to ďŹ ll out the survey and contribute to improving the student experience here. The National Student Survey has a direct impact on University ranking tables and websites such as Please make sure you make the most of these opportunities to say good or bad things about your time here!

The DUSA Executive Committee this year published a Manifesto which documented our pledges to the student body. With over 3,000 copies published, the Manifesto was launched in an Acoustic night in early September during Freshers Week. The driving force behind the Manifesto was accountability; which was put into practice through Ask the Exec, and Exec on the Road sessions.

In April and May 2011. DUSAâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s own annual online survey, of over 1700 students reinforced these ďŹ ndings. 85% of students reported that they were satisďŹ ed with both the standard of the teaching and the learning environment at Dundee University. Over 57% of students cited that DUSA/The Unionâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s reputation had played a part in their decision of whether to come to Dundee University and 88% reported that DUSA/The Union had played a positive effect on their student experience at Dundee.


A response to the Manifesto was released online, detailing how each of the Manifesto pledges were met, and were accompanied by a poster campaign.

Fridge Magazine The Fridge magazine was once again delivered to the homes of incoming Freshers in early August, and detailed the activity programme of Freshers Week 2010, as well as the roles of each student Executive member. Once again advertising sales were increased on the previous year and the publication now generates a small proďŹ t for DUSA where as in 2007 it cost the organisation ÂŁ7K.

Posters & LeaďŹ&#x201A;ets 2010/11 saw a continuation of DUSA poster campaigns and leaďŹ&#x201A;ets across campus, providing an opportunity to visually engage with our members. However this year the improvement in online marketing has resulted in over a 30% reduction in the amount of ďŹ&#x201A;yers printed.

Print Communications DUSA continue to communicate and engage with students through print mediums. In 2010/11, DUSA released numerous publications, leaďŹ&#x201A;ets and ran poster campaigns with the overall aim of communicating our activities to you and engaging your opinion.

Press Activity The Student Executive Committee released 43 press releases in 2010/11, which received varying degrees of press attention. Prominently featuring in local newspapers The Courier, the Evening Telegraph and the Press and Journal, DUSA also gained notable coverage in STV News, Tay FM and Wave 102fm. The highlight of DUSAâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s external press coverage was a debate on Higher Education, featured on Radio Scotlandâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Call Kaye show.


Continuing with the popular Matters series, DUSA this year launched DUSA Matters, Societies Matter, Employability Matters, Students Matter and NSS Matters. Most Involvement in a JJapanese reality advertisement also booklets were co-written with a propelled DUSA to the pages of the Daily prope University department such as Record and other national papers, R <0 Academic Quality and Careers. The interested in following the ventures of in !  CC4A  T Matters series aimed to provide e SXcX^ B ] Dandy Sakano, a Japanese comedian. D students with vital information on services and guidance provided by the University and DUSA. Around 15,000 Matters 0R^\ _P]X^ booklets were published and ]c^c WT< P]XUT distributed around campus and bc^ Ă H ^ daBc our membership. dS Dundee University Students



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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11

DUSA – Who pays for it? It may come as a surprise to many people to discover that DUSA/The Union is in fact a charity (SC016047) and is designated as a Not for Profit Organisation. Initially this might appear unusual as our services are not generally open to members of the public; however we do exist to meet the charitable needs of our members (i.e. you, the students). Although we operate a number of high-profile services such as affordable catering, entertainments, cafes and bars, we also provide a whole host of pastoral services such as campaigns, representing you when you may be in difficulties with the university and supporting your many clubs and societies. Unlike most charities that obtain their funding from donations, DUSA/The Union only receives in the region of one-ninths of its funds in the form of donations. This means that the vast majority of our funding has to come from trading with the students. So if you have ever wondered what happens to the money that you handover in the campus shops, bars, café or indeed Mono; it doesn’t go to pay shareholders dividends or fat-cat bonuses, it is invested back into the charity for the benefit of you and future students of the University of Dundee. This is a point worth remembering when you are bombarded daily by messages from all the commercial night clubs, restaurants and pubs – is it you they love, or your cash! We don’t expect you to spend your hard-earned money with us simply because we are your own private Club, we do our very best to ensure that the goods and services offered to you are as good as, if not better, than the High Street but priced at a level that you can afford.

The Union is the perfect place for students to relax, socialise with friends and enjoy the typically sunny Dundee weather on campus green.

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Profits made from our commercial operations are put back into a wide variety of projects such as the annual Elections.

View of the Union from Balfour Street.

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11

Projected financial results 2010/2011


565 49

DUSA Income 2010/2011 (£000s) 4475

DUSA derives the majority of its income through trading with its’ members via the DUSA bars, shops, catering and entertainments. An annual grant is also received from the University of Dundee: Income from trading with members

University grant

Other income


DUSA Costs 2010/2011 (£000s) DUSA spends its income on the costs of providing bars, shops, catering and entertainments, together with the costs of all the services DUSA provides: 3549 Costs of trading with members

Other costs

13 49

DUSA Financial Summary 2010/2011 (£000s)



The surplus DUSA makes from trading with its’ members is added to the University grant and other income – this is then used to pay for all of the services DUSA provides, resulting in a projected surplus for 2010/2011 of £13,000. This will be re-invested back into providing DUSA services in future years: Costs of DUSA services

University Grant

Surplus from trading with members

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Other income

Surplus for year


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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11

Incoming President’s Statement Annual Report As the incoming DUSA President for 2011-12 it is appropriate to end this Annual Report on the activities of your Union over the past year with a look to the future. We have gone from strength to strength and have maintained our position as the best Students Union in Scotland. However, the incoming Exec will not rest on our laurels and will strive to improve the student experience of all students at our University. Representation is at the heart of what DUSA as an organisation is all about. We are elected to articulate what the student opinion is and to advocate for their needs. With significant uncertainty surrounding Higher Education, DUSA must broaden its horizons from effective representation within the University to include influence at a national level. To achieve this DUSA will establish closer links with other Student Associations who share the same vision. Working within the framework of the first ever 5 year DUSA Strategy we have identified three themes which will guide our Association forward. These are Your Degree, Your Campus, Your Community.

Your Degree The new Executive team bring a wealth of experience dealing with the common problems which arise during a four year degree. To ease some of these we aim to lobby for the introduction of a fair and more just system of marking within the School and College structure. Also we have identified the need for greater contact between Personal Advisors and students so a support network is easily identified if a problem arises. With increasing competition for jobs it is essential that issues surrounding employability are given a renewed focus within the University. Over the past year DUSA has led the way with the introduction of an in-house intern programme and supporting the work of the Careers Service. My team and I wish to see the importance of Careers advice and guidance embedded within the curriculum and will work towards this goal with the University management. There is also significant opportunity for an expansion of the intern programme to University Departments and publicising the benefits of volunteering.

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/11


Your Campus The quality of student experience is not only determined by the academic side of University life. It is vitally important that the facilities for learning are fit for purpose but also that areas for recreation and stress relief exist. To this end we will introduce a simple feedback form on the DUSA website so that the services offered by your Union building can be tailored to your needs. In addition as an Exec we will always look for an improvement to all our campuses including those at Kirkcaldy and Ninewells. We are in the process of planning a series of campaigns which will coincide with National Awareness Days in an effort to provoke debate around issues in the wider world. Also plans are underway to invite back highly successful graduates to deliver talks on fields of expertise which range from medical research to journalism and law.

Your Community One recurring problem which students face every year is difficulty with private landlords over such issues as deposits and impartial advice. DUSA is committed to making renting as a student in Dundee as hassle free as possible. To this aim a new accommodation finder website will be launched which ensures that only the most reputable landlords are recommended by DUSA. We have also committed ourselves to reintroducing a Raising and Giving (RAG) Week for the purpose of raising money for local charities in Dundee. This event is designed to improve upon the already excellent relationship between the student population and our neighbours in the city while enhancing the awareness of volunteering and civic duty. The words above offer only a broad outline of what we intend to do in the forthcoming year. For a more detailed explanation of our plans for DUSA and the University please pick up a copy of our manifesto or visit our website. We are your representatives and we are eager to hear what you want from us. To end I wish to offer my sincere thanks to our predecessors, the Exec team 2010-2011, for leaving a strong legacy upon which we can build for the future.

Iain Kennedy President 2011/12


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Dundee University Students Association (DUSA) Airlie Place, Dundee, DD1 4HP Tel: 01382 386060 Fax: 01382 386061 Registered Scottish Charity No. SC016047 DUSA Supports Recycling. All DUSA Publications are printed on 100% Recycled paper

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DUSA Annual Report 2010/2011  

Read about about what DUSA has been up to for the past 12 months. It's been an exciting year!