By Thomas Ron
Every year YUSU holds awards to celebrate students or student groups that have been exemplary in the academic year. These awards are known as the Love York Awards and they are open for nominations now. The link is here
One award I particularly want to talk about is the Academic Representative(s) of the Year Award. This is where you recognise your Course/Department/Faculty Reps for the excellent job that they do. You can nominate individuals or groups (so if you think one Rep has done a very good job then you can nominate them but if you think the entire team has done a good job you can nominate the group). If you do nominate a group you will need to put a primary contact e-mail but as long as you make it clear in the nomination it should be fine.
This year I have been blown away by the excellent work of some Academic representatives. We have a great group of Course and Department Reps who have done fantastic work. Whether it is bringing online submission as the teams in Sociology, History, and English have done, moving the department towards wider takeup of lecture capture as seen in PEP, Law, Philosophy, Physics, Maths, Politics, TFTV, English, and Sociology, or bringing the Academic Society closer to the department and giving them seats on the Board of Studies, this year our reps have been outstanding in their innovation and skill in improving the department. Furthermore, some of the reps have not just focused on their department, but have actually looked at how to advance Academic Representation at a university-wide level, through faculties, or have taken on specific issues, like employability.
It is not only me who has been impressed. When I meet with Heads of Departments, Chairs of Board of Studies, or members of Teaching Committee, or just regular academics all I hear about is how good the reps are this year especially and how present they are. We have found a year where all sides are working together well and fighting for students.
This needs to be recognised. For many years Course Reps have seemed all but invisible and have had a hard time getting the recognition they deserve. This year they are visible, open, and respected. Therefore I can think of no better way to show our appreciation for them then by nominating them for this award. While only one can win all the nominations are read and we can make sure that some of the words to back to them so they can feel good about themselves