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September 7, 2009 | by  | in Opinion |
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President’s column


Student Fees Forum

VUWSA and the University are hosting a Student Fees Forum this Wednesday. The Chancellor and I have agreed to host this Forum in order to communicate the issues considered by the University Council when setting student fees.

The Forum provides an opportunity for Victoria students to be addressed by the University concerning the upcoming setting of domestic fees for the 2010 academic year, and for you to raise any queries. The Forum includes presentations by the Chancellor and the Vice-Chancellor, and a questions and answers session. Domestic fees will be set at a meeting of University Council, to be held on Monday 21 September.

When: Wednesday 9 September, 12–1pm
Where: Hunter Lecture Theatre (HULT) 220

NZUSA August Conference

During the mid-trimester break I attended the New Zealand Union of Students’ Associations (NZUSA) August Conference, hosted at Lincoln University. NZUSA has 15 member associations, including both university and polytechnic students’ associations.

The August Conference provides student representatives with an opportunity to discuss relevant issues and ideas which assist us in being effective at our jobs, both at a campus level and nationally as part of the student movement. It is also an opportunity to meet and network, strategise on national campaigns, and help set the direction of NZUSA. To this end, there are a number of relevant workshops, keynotes addresses, and presentations.

Student engagement was a major theme of the Conference. I presented a workshop on “Creating a campus environment that promotes student engagement”, where I talked about VUWSA’s involvement in the Campus Hub Redevelopment Project. The VUWSA Trust is donating $12 million toward the redevelopment of the Kelburn campus, in order to help create a world-class space for students to meet, study and socialise.

A variety of other sessions were held, including on student association benchmarking, creating handover documents for Executive members, and maintaining institutional knowledge. Workshops were also run on equity group issues and on strategic planning and campaigns.

August Conference includes the election of NZUSA representatives for the following year. NZUSA has two elected full time Co-Presidents, and a part time National Women’s Rights Officer (NWRO).

David Do, 2008 President of Auckland University Students’ Association (AUSA) was elected 2010 NZUSA Co-President. However, both the second Co-President position and the NWRO role remain unfilled for 2010 (despite there being nominations for these positions).

NZUSA will hold an election of these positions later this year. If you are interested in finding out more about either of these positions, please contact Sophia Blair or Jordan King.

Debating Society victorious fourth year in a row

Congratulations to the Victoria University of Wellington Debating Society, who recently won the prestigious “Joynt Scroll” (the New Zealand Universities’ Prepared Debating Champs) for the fourth consecutive year.

The Joynt Scroll is New Zealand’s second oldest sporting competition. It is competed for annually by students at Auckland, Otago, Canterbury, and Victoria universities. This year the event was hosted by the University of Otago.

In this year’s competition the Victoria University A team defeated Auckland University A in the Grand Final, successfully arguing that endangered languages should not be left to die.

Victoria students also did exceptionally well in terms of the individual speaker prizes awarded. Stephen Whittington was named as the best speaker of the tournament, with Stephen and Kathy Scott-Dowell (from the Victoria B team), being named members of the New Zealand Universities’ Prepared Debating Team. Ella Edginton and Richard D’Ath were named as reserves to the New Zealand Team. Udayan Mukherjee was named as the most promising speaker of the tournament.

VUWSA Elections

Nominations are still open for the 2010 VUWSA Executive, along with the position of University Council Student Representative, and two Publications Committee Student Representatives. Nominations are open until 10 September. If you are interested in finding out more, stop by one of VUWSA’s offices or e-mail the Returning Officer.

In solidarity and service,

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