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February 27, 2012 | by  | in Opinion |
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Vice-President (Academic)

I didn’t do much this summer besides go to Invercargill. It’s been pretty terrible.

Things only really brightened up once the VUWSA office opened on the 9th of January. On my first day, President Bridie hustled me into her office for a catch-up. As we sat down, Beyonce’s ‘Run the World (Girls)’ came on. “It’s my theme song of this year!” Bridie gushed.

Being the childish and jealous asshole that I am, I immediately wanted a theme song of my own. Not one for originality, I thought about pilfering Bridie’s—but it wasn’t convincing enough, given my assigned gender. Later on, as I sat in my frigid office, it came to me: ‘Represent’, by Nas. How apt a theme song for a student representative: “straight up shit is real and any day could be your last in the jungle.” It was an eerily congruous metaphor for fighting through the jungle of university bureaucracy.

I could’ve used this cheesy, badly-crafted segue to ease you into any number of topics. 90s rap. Beyonce (don’t tempt me). Nas. The affliction of my self-obsession. Wellington’s cocaine market… Nah. Today’s inaugural romp is, shockingly enough, VUWSA- oriented (maybe I’ll delve into Wellington’s coke market in my next column).

Firstly, VUWSA is your association. Pleasantries and buzz- phrases aside, we have the primary responsibility of facilitating representation for the general student body, regardless of whether you ticked the box to become a member or otherwise. We provide students with a voice, and guide this voice through our class representative/faculty delegate system, in keeping the University accountable to the needs of its students. We are there when levies and fees are set, when bitter academic grievances tabled, and when cruel academic policies are proposed, always valiantly battling!

That aside, VUWSA also provides, and helps to provide, other more everyday things (some are member-exclusive)—like the food bank, Student Job Search, free bread, free bus passes, free advocacy expertise, free flu shots, free willy (gotcha!), study week breakfasts, exam packs, welcome packs, wall-planners, diaries, Salient, Uni Games access, clubs (including funding, and clubs week), tax refunds, Campus Angels, representative groups, the Campus Hub upgrade, VicBooks, the VBC radio station…

I’m bored of listing, and I’m running dangerously above my word limit.

If you want to know more, check out our website at vuwsa.org. nz. Otherwise, feel free to pop in to the office on Level 2 of the Student Union Building (that’s the big pointy building) and have a chat. If you’d like to become a member of VUWSA, just pop down to reception, take 2 minutes to fill in a form (it’s free!) and you’re in.

One last thing—have a jolly old VUWSA O WEEK 2012. Be happy in the knowledge that in the face of adversity, we worked our asses off for it to happen! Witness the fitness.

Yours needily,
Josh Wright (Vice President Academic)
avp@vuwsa.org.nz

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