President's Update - Welcome

Since it has been the coldest summer in the UK for about 35 years, let me give all our new and returning students a warm welcome to Edinburgh College.

The welcome weeks seen around 5500 students pass through the doors of the college and it was a pleasure to be a part of the induction and meeting everyone who attended.

The summer certainly has been a busy one for ECSA with a new team of full-time officers taking up their posts in July. I have returned for a second term as President and we have Beth Anderson, VP Welfare, and Cameron Conner as our VP Sports and Activities for 2017/18. I would like to thank the outgoing officers and wish them all the best in what they move onto next, I’m sure you will both do some great stuff.

With numerous events and training over the summer, we managed to find time to pull together our strategic objectives for the year from ideas the officers have had and campaign promises from our election manifestos. We are going to be doing some exciting work in the coming year and we hope we can engage and bring as many students with us along the way. From supporting and developing Class Reps to addressing mental health, there will be some essential work that we can only do with good participation from a student body engaged in our activities this year.

We want to carry on from all the great work we produced last year, particularly from the new structured Class Rep conferences. We produced reports which really made a difference to students lives and contributed to how the Senior Management interact with us and take notice of the work we are doing to better improve the Student Learning Experience.

Our summer began with a couple of days in Stirling and Livingston completing some essential training with the whole team. Learning the in’s and outs of ECSA while learning about what support we will receive from the National Union of Students (NUS) this year and all the great work they will be doing. A lot of this work is around better supporting College Students' Associations and college students specifically. The 100% attendance rule for college bursaries will be on the agenda again and using our college as a good example of how it is fairly implemented will mean we will be looking for students to act as case studies to show how it has been a positive experience and perhaps an example of how it wasn’t fairly implemented for others. If anyone would like to get involved and help in this area please feel free to contact myself and I will talk you through the next steps.

Another exciting piece of work I’ll be focusing on this year is on getting students talking about their education and how we can help the Quality department of the college to make recommendations to curriculum staff on ways to develop their practice and deliver an even higher standard of learning and teaching at Edinburgh College. And, of course if there are excellent examples of best practice I want to hear about those too as we will be holding our annual ECSA-llence Awards again next year! The awards are going from strength to strength and we really are seeing buy-in from lecturers and a more competitive spirit in the college on how lecturers can become better and deliver better learning and teaching.

Here’s to an exciting year ahead and I look forward to seeing you all at Freshers' Week, make sure you come say hi! Look out for all the upcoming opportunities throughout the year, we will be offering loads to students who are either looking for a wee bit more extra cash or even that valuable work experience to help meat out that CV or UCAS application.