Hope you are all well and staying safe!
As mentioned in our previous email, the Students’ Union is closing for the Christmas period, which means that the Student Opportunities team will not be working after Friday 11 December until Monday 4 January. Therefore, over this time if you get in touch with us, you won’t receive a response. You can still submit Freshdesk tickets, we just won’t respond until we return to the office in the new year. Before we go, here is an update on student group activity for term two:
Term Two Activity
As term one ends, it means it is time to prepare for the start of term two! Whilst there is hope on the horizon with the release of the vaccine, in the meantime there are still rules and restrictions we need to follow. At the moment, we are currently in Tier 2 but this is subject to change between now and the beginning of term. The government has also released guidance to Universities asking them to implement a staggered 5-week return to face to face teaching which will also have an impact on what activity is able to take place on campus.
So what does this mean for your group?
We are working closely with the University to work out what activity will be permitted on campus but as those discussions are still going on, we won’t be able to update you until we return to the office after the 4 January. This means for the first week of term (11 - 17 January) all student group activity must be virtual. When we’re back in the office we will then provide you with a full update on what activity is able to take place in a physical capacity based on tier restrictions and the University’s update on the staggered return. You can continue to plan virtual activity for the remainder of term two, but we will not be accepting any event proposals for in-person activity until we have issued our next update.
Like during term one, any events you have planned, including virtual activity, must be approved before going ahead. You will need to submit an event proposal and risk assessment at least 2 weeks prior to the event (4 weeks’ notice is needed for guest speakers) and wait until you have received approval from the Student Opportunities team before you go ahead with the event.
For any virtual events taking place in the first week of term (week commencing 11 January), your event proposal and risk assessment will need to be submitted by 3 January. Any virtual events after that will need to follow the two weeks’ notice period otherwise they will be automatically rejected and you will need to resubmit. For any in-person events, you will need to wait until we have updated groups in January before submitting any event proposals.
As well as individual risk assessments submitted alongside your event proposals, by now all student groups should have completed their general risk assessment, and had it approved by the Student Opportunities team. This covers all of your regular core purpose activity. With guidelines and restrictions changing, this means there might need to be changes to your general risk assessment. When we’re back in January we will let you know the process for making these updates if necessary.
To welcome students back onto campus in the new year, as well as welcoming some new January starters, we will be re-launching the Freshers Fair webpage as part of our Welcome 2.0 programme. This will be going live to students on the 25 January. If you would like to provide up to date information then all you need to do is make sure your student group web page is up to date by the 22 January. Check out this Freshdesk article for more information on how to update your web pages. There will also be an opportunity to add your events onto your Freshers Fair and Student Group webpages, but we will be reaching out with more information on how to do this when we return to the office week commencing 4 January - so make sure to keep an eye out!
We’re aware this is a lot of information so if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch, if we don’t get back to you before the end of term then we will on our return in January! Otherwise, we hope you all enjoy your well-deserved break and rest up after working so hard in this rather challenging term!
Happy holidays and best wishes,