Hiya 2018 from your CSM School Rep

Well hello there 2018, new term, loads of deadlines… but also lighter evenings, summer on the way (hopefully) and a chance for a fresh start. Sorry, nearly slipped into writing a self-help book there.

So, as we’ve not been back long this blog will be a shorter one. But be prepared for an epic three-pager at the end of February. I hope you all had a wonderful break, I know that towards the end of last term emotions were running high and there was an awful lot of stress running around the CSM building – I know there definitely was for me. However, over the holidays I did a bit of reflection (and a lot of eating *insert pig emoji here) and I’ve decided that for 2018 I’m going to be doing a lot more to stop the stress from building up to the point where I want to pop. It’s important to remember that if you do ever get to that point, there’s loads of help available to you. Hopefully you would’ve seen the ‘Big White Wall’ that was launched just before the end of last semester. It’s a really useful online space, free for all students to use, to just air some of the anxieties and worries that run around our minds at different points in the term. I feel like this year I owe it to myself to not put myself under so much pressure to be super human, so I’m taking a ‘chip away at it’ philosophy to help maintain a semi-peaceful mind!

In light of this, I’d really appreciate some suggestions as to what the SU could be doing to enhance your experience? On World Mental Health Day, the SU ran a ‘mindfulness afternoon tea’ – it was just an hour or so to relax and clear your mind and chat to new people. It was lovely – and a nice change from the library. What I’d like to know is if  things like that would interest you all at CSM? We’re launching Tell Us again this semester so any suggestions as to how the SU can improve your experience as a student are all welcome. You’ll be able to talk to Will, Ieaun and myself in person or emailing studentunion@cardifmet.ac.uk - all emails are guaranteed a response and hopefully what you all come up with will help with that end-of-term-chaos!

So, although we’ve been back for just a few weeks. I’ve still been doing bits and pieces! I’m working with the absolutely magic team behind all of our courses to help shape a new online module selection. We’ve asked reps and students what questions they want answering to inform their choices when picking future modules. This is great because the more information you have available, the more likely you are to enjoy your module choices. AND! The fact that it’s online means that you can go back, re-read and re-watch all the information that you’re given before choosing. This is all shaped by feedback I’ve had from you all over the last semester so I’m really looking forward to hearing your thoughts once you’ve all had a chance to use the new system on Moodle.

I’m saving the best until last really in this blog BECAUSE. On Tuesday 16th January, the SU took over Centro at Cyncoed and held the very first Rep Conference. Some of you were there, and I hope you thoroughly enjoyed it, but to those of you who weren’t the day revolved around the importance of the student voice – your voice. We held sessions on student engagement and I focused on tailoring ways for engaging with International Students! It was a fantastic way to meet and get involved with other reps and students that have such wonderful ideas and I think we all benefited in a number of different ways. I’m looking forward to putting some of these ideas into practice, so watch this space!!

 

ANYWAY. Moving on to this term, look out for the Tell Us tours as well as surveys that have just been launched.

Otherwise, please don’t hesitate to email me as some of you already have (thank you!!) if there’s anything I can help with: csmrep@cardiffmet.ac.uk

 

Thanks for reading

Alex.