PRESIDENT KENT – Sol Gjøines
Hi, hey, hello!
My name is Sol Gjøines, and I was a BA Fine Art student on the Canterbury campus. In March of 2021 I was elected as President Kent for the UCA Students’ Union. I had the privilege of being able to continue this work, and in March of 2022, I was re-elected, and I am now in my second and last year as your representative.
Being completely transparent, I had little to no contact with your Students’ Union during my time at UCA. Ironically enough, that is one of the reasons I wanted to be your representative the following academic year - to work toward making sure you as a student know how your Students’ Union works for you, and all of the amazing things you can expect from your membership. As such, I aim to make your Students’ Union as visible, approachable, and personable as possible.
Working closely with President Surrey, there are many exciting projects and campaigns already in the works to better the student experience. Such as Cultivating Campus Community, Enhancing Employability, Implementing International Inclusivity, and more.
We are here for you, the students. Your Students’ Union is a separate entity from the University, and although there is a close working relationship between the two, the students will always be our first priority. Ultimately, we serve as your voice, and I am ready to fight for it! Even if that means ruffling some feathers. ;)
As President Kent, I will primarily be located on the Canterbury and Rochester campuses. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with me about any queries you may have, or just to have a chat, either in person or through email. My door is always open!
I look forward to another exciting year of representing the student voice!
What ARE SOL'S CAMPAIGNS THIS YEAR?
Cultivate Campus Community
Because of the Covid-19 Pandemic, students have seen higher levels of isolation, less opportunity to be in community with one another and it has been harder to make those friendships that makes University life that bit easier. That’s why this campaign will revolve around things like Kent having regular on-campus events (both creative workshop events, and things like pub quizzes, silent discos, and open mic nights), promoting clubs, societies and identity communities, and properly celebrating FE and Rochester in their last year.
One of the biggest anxieties students will face is wondering what is next at the end of their University career. Because of this, I want to organize things like free headshots for students, portfolio review sessions, and networking events, as well as collaborating with the careers team where possible.
Implement International Inclusivity
International students make up quite a sizable chunk of the student body at UCA, and although UCA has started the process of internationalisation, International students in the UK are still inadequately supported in many areas. I will be working on some business cases and reports in favour of UCA 1. Implementing a guarantor scheme, and 2. Freezing International fees from year one. This campaign also includes things like organising a culture fair, to show off the many cultures we have on campus.
Campaign for Climate Justice
Our generation is one of the most disproportionately affected by the Climate Crisis, which is why I think this is something that is important to a lot of students. This campaign includes things like creating sustainable gardens on each campus for students to tend to, collaborating with local climate activist groups to get students involved, and employ a student climate campaigner to continue the ongoing UCASU Climate Campaign.
This is a very small addition that has rolled over from last year, and is already very close to being finished! I wanted to have all of the UCASU promotion in one easy to find location, with some permanent posters for general information, and some rolling ones for upcoming events etc. New noticeboards have been purchased and installed on each campus, and some of the new posters will be designed before the start of term! It was a very easy win, but with very high benefit!
The basic job description for President:
The President will:
• Be the figurehead of Kent campuses
• Develop campaigns in students’ interests
• Sit on relevant committees, including the Board of Governors
• Liaise with the University on the development of the student experience, complaints, equal opportunities and disciplinary procedures.