Last week E&E Committee held their first meeting of the year under the lead of new Ethical and Environmental Officer Josh Cox. It was felt that this year the committee should set themselves four objectives that they can work towards throughout the various events and campaigns that they run throughout the year. With a hugely successful year behind them it is important that E&E continues to go from strength to strength and with these aims it seems they can only get stronger.
1) Student Engagement and Diversifying E&E Membership
The past year saw the committee grow to its biggest and with the first ever AGM held at the end of the the last academic year it showed that there were people around Southampton University that truly cared about E&E and were prepared to help it grow. The problem the committee faced was one where they had a strong committee for the next year but as students left the university it would lose its strong membership, therefore this year E&E have committed to increasing their student engagement and strengthening their membership. This involves diversifying their membership and attracting people from other subject areas different to Environmental Science. This has already started with an extremely successful Fresher’s Week for the committee. Throughout the year the committee hope to engage more people and sign people up to their mailing list to keep them informed about everything E&E has planned and done.
Diversifying membership, promoting more ethical events, integrating and holding SUSU accountable
2) Integrate E&E in to SUSU
It is extremely important that E&E is seen at the heart of SUSU and the committee are looking to reduce the stigma behind E&E. This has already begun with Kind of a Big Deal Day, a new brand reduced the stigma behind E&E and the foot fall to the event was fantastic. The committee attracted a whole new group of people who didn’t realise that they do have interests in E&E but it also allowed the committee to show just how embedded they are in SUSU culture. With Ethics Week and Environments Week to come the committee aim to show students how E&E fits in to the various parts of SUSU.
3) Greater focus on ethical issues
The committee noticed that they hadn’t focused on the ethical side of their role enough in the previous years yet it makes up half of what the committee should be focusing on. This year saw the introduction of an Ethical Officer on the committee to help co-ordinate events starting with Ethics Week early next year. Throughout the year the committee hope to highlight some key ethical issues and address where SUSU can work harder to improve their ethical credentials.
4) Holding SUSU accountable and reporting back
It is all well and good that E&E run events, and they try and improve the E&E credentials within SUSU but it is just as important that we hold SUSU to account and ensure that any changes made are carried on throughout the year and in years to come. It is also equally important that the committee report back on everything they have done, and that the student body also hold the committee accountable. E&E will be releasing a newsletter at least once a month and E&E Officer Josh Cox is keen to take any questions through his email (firstname.lastname@example.org) at any point throughout the year. It is important to show just how much work the E&E committee do and it is as important that students have the right to voice their concerns and praise the work they do.
It is going to be a busy year for the committee and for the many participants involved but they hope this year can be just as fun and successful as the last. If students have any questions for the committee they can email Josh Cox on email@example.com