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Course Rep Profiles

Course Reps are your direct feedback channel on your academic experiences at Surrey and so much more. They are elected to be responsible for collecting feedback and working with the Union and University to see change happen. We have over 500 Course Reps who a volunteer their time for the Voice Zone at the Union and for the University, providing academic representation for all students at Surrey. 

Want to know more about what Course Reps do and what they've achieved? Take a look through our Course Rep profiles from an Undergraduate Rep in each department in the University to read about their first-hand experiences. 

If you want to read more about the Course Rep scheme, or find the details of your own Course Rep, please use the buttons below. 

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Biosciences and Medicine - Rebeca Chambers Diaz

rebeca.JPGHow long have you been a Course Rep, and why were you interested in the role?

I have been a Course Rep for four years now. The first time I heard about this role, I thought it would be interesting to have a chance to be able to get in touch with my whole cohort regularly, be introduced to new people, stand in front of an audience and practice my public speaking, and most importantly, be the one whom students would ask advice from. Thus, a few days later, when they asked who would be inclined to be the Course Rep that year, I raised my hand, and have done so every year since then.  

What is your usual process for receiving and dealing with feedback?

If a student makes a remark, whether it is positive or negative, usually the first thing I do is ask around the rest of my cohort to see whether others agree. If indeed it is a wide-spread issue, I notify the relevant member of staff. If it is of greater concern, I will bring it up in a SSLC/BoS/SVF meeting. In the case of it being a sensitive issue – which does not happen too regularly – that I am not sure how to handle I normally contact the Student's Union.

What achievements are you most proud of since you began your role? 

I think one of my greatest achievements was organising a zoom call with my cohort to catch-up with each other after the holidays and discuss our recently completed semester. Despite it seeming like a small action, I think it facilitated communication and increased positivity within my classmates, which is always very much appreciated, especially in these times of Covid. I was also involved in changing the length of an online exam through conducting a survey. 

How has this voluntary role supported your personal development?

Being responsible for the wellbeing of a cohort has not only pushed me to stay up to date regarding university and departmental changes, but it has also motivated me to become more sociable, communicative, and increase my knowledge regarding the functioning of the university and how issues are managed. Finally, it has provided me with skills on how to communicate professionally between staff and students. 

Why might a student contact you, and how can they get in touch with you and your fellow Course Reps if they have feedback?

Students generally contact me regarding concerns, but they will also provide positive feedback when discussing modules after a lecture (usually after a face-to-face lecture). Thankfully, my cohort does not seem to have too many concerns, but if they do, they generally message me directly through our cohort chat group.  

Health Sciences - Chlӧe Thomas

chloe 1.jpgHow long have you been a Course Rep, and why were you interested in the role?

Hello my name is Chlӧe and I’m the current 3rd year course rep for Child Nursing! I’ve been a course rep for almost a year now and I’ve enjoyed every moment of it. I first wanted to be a course rep to hep ensure the student voice was accurately represented, concerns were raised and that together through meetings, solutions could be found! This is a big passion of mine and one I wish to continue!

What is your usual process for receiving and dealing with feedback?

Receiving and obtaining feedback is a crucial part of being a course rep and I've found that if people do have concerns, they will email or message you directly! When I do get feedback, I note it down and if it's an immediate concern then email the appropriate person or take it to the next formal meeting to be discussed! I also make sure I'm active on My Surrey Voice to help answer peoples concerns and questions! 

What achievements are you most proud of since you began your role? 

Throughout the year I've had many wonderful opportunities! I've had the opportunity to work with a fellow student nurse and friend, Shay, to create a Nursing Survival guide which was given to multiple cohorts and fields in Health Sciences and something we are both proud of! I'm proud that I've managed to maintain the nursing blog with Aliya, a second-year student nurse, and I'm proud to have been a course rep and help voice peoples concerns through the pandemic and these tough times. 

How has this voluntary role supported your personal development?

Personally, the role has helped to develop my organisational abilities and helped me to look at things from other perspectives. Being able to manage uni work, placement, and being a course rep requires a lot of organisation and this is definitely a skill I have learnt. You also have to take into consideration everyone's views and consolidate them to given coherent feedback which is something I have learnt to do. 

Why might a student contact you, and how can they get in touch with you and your fellow Course Reps if they have feedback?

Students get in touch with us for a variety of reasons; to raise concerns, give praise or suggest an idea! We are always here to listen and available via university emails or people can message us directly! 

Psychology - Gina George-Adams

gina2.JPGHow long have you been a Course Rep, and why were you interested in the role?

I have been a course rep for two years now, the initial thing that intrigued me about this role was the chance to help students and give them the opportunity to get the most out of their university experience, which is very important to me. Being a course rep gives me the opportunity to raise each stunts concerns and ensure every voice is heard.

What is your usual process for receiving and dealing with feedback?

The usual process is raising this to the module convenor or year tutor depending on the nature of the issue, and listing different ways and solutions to help resolve this issue. In the case where the issue cannot be resolved it involves understanding why the issue cannot be resolved but still providing other avenues of support and explaining this to students. I will  feed this back to students but also the convenor or personal tutor will as well to help enforce the message. 

What achievements are you most proud of since you began your role? 

My proudest achievement is in general just knowing that my peers issues are being listened to and resolved, lessening any stress or anxiety they were previously feeling on their course, which is deeply rewarding in itself.  

How has this voluntary role supported your personal development?

On a personal level being a course rep has led to the development of my time management and organisation skills, needing to balance my responsibilities along with my school work has taught me how to effectively manage, organise and make the most out of my time which I know will help aid my career in the future. 

Why might a student contact you, and how can they get in touch with you and your fellow Course Reps if they have feedback?

A student can contact us if they have a concern, issue, question or a praise they want to tell us. They can contact us is through personal email or Unitu.

Vet School - Heather Thompson & Sophia Saunders

sophia.pngHow long have you been a Course Rep, and why were you interested in the role?

Heather: This is currently my second year as course rep and I initially applied as I wanted to be more involved within Vet School. As our school is still relatively new, we have always been encouraged by staff members for our viewpoints and feedback. As the courses are gradually evolving to help beat suit student understanding and learning. During covid, we have now experienced an even greater rapid change in learning and I feel that it's vital that students feel that they aren't going through this alone and their voices will be heard.

heather 1.pngSophia: I have only been a Course Rep for this year, so one semester. I applied because there had been quite a few changes at the Vet School (mostly to do with COVID). I felt, as Course Rep, I could help to give the vet school feedback from my peers to help ensure our learning experience was not negatively affected. And also work with staff to help them understand better what students' opinions were on new ways of teaching in the Hybrid model. 

What is your usual process for receiving and dealing with feedback?

It depends what the feedback is on, anything to do with course content we encourage students to use Discussion boards on Surrey Learn. Unitu has been a great addition to help manage feedback and this is the route we ask our year to use. This means feedback is there for everyone to see should student have similar concerns. But we also get emails and FaceBook messages. Basically, if something cannot be solved by the usual routes, we can take feedback directly to the faculty members concerned on behalf of the year group which works quite well. Additionally we would create regular polls to gather the majority of our cohorts feedback, especially for SSLC.

What achievements are you most proud of since you began your role? 

Heather: During last summer's online exams, I quickly and regularly gave the Vet School feedback about the layout of the online exams from my cohort. This led to two structural changes being made where students felt they could follow and complete the exams easily, with less buffering when flicking through the "pages". 

Sophia: There have been quite a few challenges with the Hybrid learning system, and with our course being based in medicine we do still have practicals. I think working with staff and students to ensure everyone is comfortable, safe, and still getting the most out of the course has been the thing I am most proud of.

How has this voluntary role supported your personal development?

Heather: I think this role has shown me the value of patience and that even if you try and fail, some factors are beyond anyone's control. 

Sophia: It has definitely improved my communication skills. There are certain issues that are raised that are quite sensitive so managing how to phrase and communicate between staff and students as the middle-man has been something that I hope I have improved and will continue to get better at. Sometimes you have to be quite diplomatic!

Why might a student contact you, and how can they get in touch with you and your fellow Course Reps if they have feedback?

We have numerous ways that we can be contacted. Via email, Facebook messenger/the year group page, discussion boards, and finally unitu. Even at the start off each semester in our welcome back lecture, our Year representative will inform our cohort who the course reps are so I would be surprised if students didn't know who and how to reach us.

FASS

Economics - Omar Srour & Ireti Omisade

GSA.jpgOmar Srour: 

How long have you been a Course Rep, and why were you interested in the role?

I have been a course rep for just over a semester now. This role was of interest to me because of the opportunity I saw in helping my peers communicate better with the university. I enjoy social interactions and communicating with my peers and that is exactly what this role requires.

What is your usual process for receiving and dealing with feedback?

Firstly I try my best to reach out to students often in order to see if they have any feedback as some students don't actively engage with Unitu. Once they know that I am trying to collect feedback they contact me privately. For general feedback that applies to many students, I raise it to the responsible department or person in the university. For more person specific issues, I usually redirect my peers towards the person/department that can support them with their issue. 

What achievements are you most proud of since you began your role? 

My greatest achievement I would say so far is raising various critical feedback to the university. This feedback included issues with online exams that were later resolved and issues regarding online lectures and learning. My greatest achievement is that I have been able to help fellow students get their voices heard and helped make online learning just a little bit easier for them. 

How has this voluntary role supported your personal development?

This role has definitely helped my personal development. The main attribute I have been able to develop would be my communication and organizational skills. I have been able to participate in many meetings where I would have to speak up and communicate in scenarios which I would otherwise be shy. Also the fact that you are constantly being approached by students that you may not always be familiar with has helped me become more outgoing. 

Why might a student contact you, and how can they get in touch with you and your fellow Course Reps if they have feedback?

A student may contact me if they have any issues with their course or they would like to raise feedback. They can always get in touch with me through email at: os00346@surrey.ac.uk or they can anonymously raise their feedback or issue on unitu. I also reach out a lot on the Economics facebook and whatsapp group chats if people would rather approach me in a less formal manner. In addition to that students can feel free to reach out to me for a casual chat about Econ :)

GSA.jpgIreti Omisade: 

How long have you been a Course Rep, and why were you interested in the role?

I have been a course representative since my second year of university. I was interested in the role because saw it as an opportunity to serve others and bridge the gap between students and staff.  

What is your usual process for receiving and dealing with feedback?

The usual process for receiving feedback is my course group chat. Before any meeting, I usually ask if anyone has any queries and people either respond in the group chat or message me privately. Additionally, in pre-covid times I was able to speak to people face-to-face at lectures or seminars to get a sense of how things were going. 

What achievements are you most proud of since you began your role? 

I'm most proud of being able to effectively relay students queries and sentiments to my department. In particular, I'm quite proud of a survey I created alongside another course rep to get assessment feedback last semester. It was really useful for people to share their thoughts on each module and the data was shared with the department. 

How has this voluntary role supported your personal development?

This role has allowed me to develop my organisational and time management skills, as the role requires one to attend several meetings throughout the year. As a result, I have been able to effectively plan and manage my time properly so that I can perform my role as well as work on my other commitments as well as my studies. 

Why might a student contact you, and how can they get in touch with you and your fellow Course Reps if they have feedback?

Students contact me for a variety of reasons mostly assessment-related queries and timetabling issues. Also, general queries regarding the university and student life especially during this pandemic. Students can reach out to me and other course reps via the course group chat or via email. My email is io00158@surrey.ac.uk  and other course rep emails will be available on the economics student support page on surrey learn. 


GSA - Charlotte Webb

GSA.jpgHow long have you been a Course Rep, and why were you interested in the role?

I was a course rep in my first year and now again in my final year. It's easy for GSA students to feel underrepresented by the Union just because our university experience is so different. I wanted my course to have all the support possible and have their perspective represented because the Union is there for every student.

What is your usual process for receiving and dealing with feedback?

My year use our course chat to talk through any concerns together so we get multiple opinions, and I work with our other rep Noa to compile a list of issues. We either flag them in year meetings or over emails if it's more time sensitive. I then feed the responses back to the whole year so that no one misses anything important.

What achievements are you most proud of since you began your role? 

Getting elected as a member of the Voice Zone was a moment of personal pride for me because it was great to see the work I'd done as course rep and during the election pay off. It's also been amazing to be able to make student life easier for my course mates. Being able to support them through the ups and downs of university has been my proudest achievement.

How has this voluntary role supported your personal development?

It opened my eyes to how student government works and the positive change it can make for the student body. My communication skills have improved so much, particularly when it comes to working with senior members of staff. You have to consider every side of a situation. I'm a much more confident speaker and a better problem solver than I was when I started the role.

Why might a student contact you, and how can they get in touch with you and your fellow Course Reps if they have feedback?

They might contact me for a number of reasons – from assessment concerns to praise of a lecturer they'd like to feedback. They can put a subject on the Unitu page or send it over a private message if it's a personal issue. We then work together to find the most appropriate way to communicate the feedback to staff.

Hospitality, Tourism & Events Management - Annie Alvis

Annie Alvis.jpgHow long have you been a Course Rep, and why were you interested in the role?

I have been a Course Rep for 3 years, taking on the position when I first started University. I was interested in the role because I wanted to represent my course, ensure the students’ opinions were heard and get involved in the decision-making process which affects my education. I aspired to enhance my programme and help positively impact my university experience. 

What is your usual process for receiving and dealing with feedback?

The students would share their feedback with me either in person or through social media platforms and this provided me with a better understanding of their concerns, feelings and opinions. I would then take their feedback to the departmental meetings, relevant academic staff or programme leader, depending on the issue, whilst ensuring their anonymity. Once I have worked collaboratively with the academic staff, I would then revert back to the students about how the issue has been tackled and the way forward.  If I believe the issue is likely to be shared by the cohort, I would encourage the student to post on MySurrey Voice to see if the other students on my course agree and take it from there. If the issue is not directly related to my course, I would signpost the student to the right University support.

What achievements are you most proud of since you began your role? 

My proudest achievement being the Course Rep as well as the President of the Tourism, Hospitality and Events Society in my final year, is having been able to organise and host networking events for my cohort with each other and with industry leaders. These events have been successful as it allows the students to create a vast number of connections, as well as providing valuable insights and advice for securing employment especially during the COVID-19 pandemic which has seriously impacted the Hospitality and Tourism industry.

How has this voluntary role supported your personal development?

The voluntary role of acting as a liaison between the students and the staff members of the University has helped me enhance my communication, leadership, problem solving, negotiating, public-speaking and persuading skills. 

Why might a student contact you, and how can they get in touch with you and your fellow Course Reps if they have feedback?

A student might contact me to raise their concern or to share feedback for me to then present in departmental meetings or with academic staff. All students on my course have the contact number of the Course Reps, our email addresses, social media accounts and the ability to approach us in person after classes.

Law - Akshaya Mohan

GSA.jpgHow long have you been a Course Rep, and why were you interested in the role?

I have been a Course-rep for the last 3 years (since my first year). I undertook the role in my first year as I wanted to get to know the faculty and students better. Also, it looks great on a CV! After attending SSLC and Board meetings in my first year (with lots of inviting food on the table) and noticing how friendly and accepting the faculty were, I decided to stand for the role again in my second year and PTY year. 


What is your usual process for receiving and dealing with feedback?

In the first year, after being elected as the Course-rep, I created a WhatsApp group with all the members of my cohort. There I introduced my role to them and told them that they could approach me with issues and feedback whenever they wanted. Before SSLC and Board Meetings, I would take a survey/take personal feedback from everyone on what they wanted improved. Following the meeting, I would send a message on the group summarising all the issues I took to the faculty and the responses we received from them along with any other instructions the faculty asked us to convey. I used the same group for 2nd year. For my PTY year, I sent a mail to all PTY students explaining my role and setting up a group with them as well.

What achievements are you most proud of since you began your role? 

The achievement that I am most proud of is being the first PTY Course-Rep for Law. I recognised that especially after Covid, there were a lot of issues that members in my cohort faced this year. By becoming the Course-rep I was able to take these issues up with the faculty and also create a community for Law PTY students such that they didn't feel isolated while working remotely.   

How has this voluntary role supported your personal development?

Personally, this role has helped me hone a lot of skills. I learned how to draft formal emails to faculty members and convey possibly controversial matters to them in a diplomatic manner. I've also been able to meet people outside my social circle and expand my network. I was able to partake in Departmental social events with ease as there were a lot of familiar faces.

Why might a student contact you, and how can they get in touch with you and your fellow Course Reps if they have feedback?

A student can contact us for ANY academic or social issues that they face. We are here to take their feedback to the faculty, discuss issues in a module, share study-tips, or point them in the right direction if we cannot help them adequately. Anyone can get in touch with me by emailing me or messaging me on one of our WhatsApp groups. There is also a new platform called Unitu which every student is enrolled onto – so, if you don't know your course-rep, your best bet would be to log on to Unitu and provide your feedback there; your course-rep will then contact you!

Literature and Languages - Sam Buss

sam 1.jpgHow long have you been a Course Rep, and why were you interested in the role?

I've been a Course Rep since May 2020. I was interested in the role as I wanted to ensure that we had a strong community to help students through this difficult time. I wanted to be a point of contact for students to get in touch with and raise any issues they have or to let me know how things are going so we can make sure we have the best year possible.

What is your usual process for receiving and dealing with feedback?

Students are able to raise issues with us at any point throughout the year either by getting in contact directly or by using Unitu. However, leading up to our course rep meetings, we send out a survey for students to anonymously respond to and share their thoughts on how the semester is going. We also bring this up at the start of certain classes and provide students with the opportunity to ask any questions.

What achievements are you most proud of since you began your role? 

A few students got in touch with me early on in first semester, including first year students who had yet to elect their own course reps, to say they were struggling to make friends and integrate with the changes to campus. I spoke around and gained a lot of interest in starting up a departmental Languages Society. This society is now up and running and we've already hosted several socials with lots more events planned. One of the students got back in touch saying thank you, as they'd been able to meet new people both within and outside of their cohort. Overall, the feedback has been really positive from both staff and students, and the whole experience has been really rewarding.

How has this voluntary role supported your personal development?

This role has supported my personal development as it requires thinking outside the box as to how to engage students and encourage them to raise points when needed. For example, if you just send out a long survey, there will be few responses. You also need to build trust with your cohort, so they feel comfortable raising issues with you. My communication skills have improved as a result of this, as well as having to concisely feedback the information to staff and looking at ways to action this. 

Why might a student contact you, and how can they get in touch with you and your fellow Course Reps if they have feedback?

A student might get in contact with me to let me know what is going well on the course, but also with any issues they're having. We can then feedback this information to staff and collaboratively come up with ways to resolve the issue. Students can either get in touch with us directly, for example via email, or comment on Unitu themselves, which also allows for anonymity.

Music and Media - Jon Bourne

MM.jpgHow long have you been a Course Rep, and why were you interested in the role?

I've been a course rep since my first year (this is my fourth!), as I wanted to represent the views of the students on our course back to the wider University and improve everyone's experience. Getting to gather opinions, discuss with students and later with staff is a great opportunity to find improvements and encourage everyone work closer together.

What is your usual process for receiving and dealing with feedback?

Usually feedback comes out of coursework or planned module activities, and as a group we discuss through Facebook. People also message me directly or use MySurrey Voice to submit comments anonymously. I'll then either reach out to teaching staff directly or open a wider discussion to gather more opinions before working on a solution that works for everyone. Fortunately, with such a friendly department, we can have plenty of discussions and there is often an ongoing discussion after first bringing to the attention of staff.

What achievements are you most proud of since you began your role? 

Several pieces of equipment have been purchased including new AVID Controllers, camera stabilisers and grip equipment. Everyone seems happy with those! We're also in the lengthy process of applying for accreditation of the degree course to bolster our reputation in the industry and the educational setting which will be great for upcoming students on the course. We've also made module changes and introduced a FEPS Digital Communications option to our final year which proved to be popular too.

How has this voluntary role supported your personal development?

Being a course rep has made me more confident working with both staff and students for a common goal, and many of the skills I learnt were valuable during my PTY year especially. I feel more confident now with analysing and working on feedback, as well as discerning between individual requirements and those felt by the wider cohort. It's so rewarding to be able to return feedback to our group with positive outcomes too!

Why might a student contact you, and how can they get in touch with you and your fellow Course Reps if they have feedback?

Feel free to reach out directly through Facebook etc if you'd like, or alternatively drop me an email, message on Teams or a comment via MySurrey Voice. If you're not sure who your rep is, check in with the SU who can put you in touch! We all appreciate your feedback and would love to hear from you.

Politics - Desislava Ivanova

politics.jpgHow long have you been a Course Rep, and why were you interested in the role?

This is my second year as a Course Rep. I believe it is a privilege to work for the benefit of students and this role gives an opportunity to help and support colleagues.  It is a rewarding role which requires involvement in the academic life at university. That is why I became a Course Representative.

What is your usual process for receiving and dealing with feedback?

I receive feedback through face-to-face conversations, surveys, by email and through the new platform Unitu. This platform is extremely beneficial because students can easily communicate with their course representative who can escalate any feedback to the relevant staff. There is a specified time frame of several days for a reply which guarantees faster resolution of problems. However, if there are urgent issues related to certain modules, the most effective way to find a solution is to contact the module convenor directly. Therefore, the waiting time for a response might be further reduced.

What achievements are you most proud of since you began your role?  

I am proud of the fact that when a student has a concern, it is always resolved quickly. For instance, if there are issues regarding modules and deadlines, the feedback from students is taken extremely seriously and changes are undertaken in order to alleviate any concerns. There were issues raised regarding a test, which were resolved and, consequently, the performance in relation to the second assessment for the specific module greatly improved. This led to increased student satisfaction. 

How has this voluntary role supported your personal development?

I have improved my communication skills through different meetings in the department. This role provides an opportunity to resolve various problems. Team working is also essential. Hence, I developed my ability to communicate effectively in order to resolve issues in the most productive way. I became more independent, confident and, therefore, decisive. Consequently, I organised my time more efficiently despite the increasing workload.

Why might a student contact you, and how can they get in touch with you and your fellow Course Reps if they have feedback?

As mentioned above, there are various ways. I receive feedback through face-to-face conversations, surveys, by email and through the platform Unitu. 

Sociology - Izzy Roberts

sociology.JPGHow long have you been a Course Rep, and why were you interested in the role?

I have been a course representative for the Criminology BSc programme since 2019. I was interested in the role of course rep because I wanted to find ways to build my CV whilst being at university. I loved my first year of the role, collaborating with students and staff members during difficult times gave me a sense of purpose within the department. After a great first year, I applied for the role again to continue supporting students in their final year of studies at Surrey.

What is your usual process for receiving and dealing with feedback?

Since the introduction of MySurrey Voice, I've received excellent suggestions from both students and staff on Unitu. This collaborative platform allows us as course reps to smoothly action suggestions into real change! My usual process requires me to collect student feedback from talking to students, group chats or email. I'll ask the student if they're comfortable to post on MySurrey Voice or I'll post it on their behalf anonymously. I will then monitor a post and if enough students agree, then submit it to staff for a review.

What achievements are you most proud of since you began your role? 

The achievement I am most proud of since I've been a course rep is being told by my peers that I am doing a great job in representing their voices within the department and they appreciate the effort I put into the role. Receiving such wonderful praise from students means everything!

How has this voluntary role supported your personal development?

This role has allowed me to excel in navigating personal and professional environments whilst increasing my confidence in managing, at times, stressful situations. I believe that these skills are key to managing different dynamics within professional, working environments after university. I am thankful that I have already leant this, pre-graduation!

Why might a student contact you, and how can they get in touch with you and your fellow Course Reps if they have feedback?

A student can contact me at any time, as a friend or as a course representative. I believe no matter is too small for my attention, operating a very 'open door' policy with both students and staff. Students can get in touch with me via email, the MySurrey Voice platform, or in-person (or via Zoom!).  

Surrey Business School - Nathaniel Nelson-Williams

SBS.jpgHow long have you been a Course Rep, and why were you interested in the role?

I've been a Course Rep for four years, and I'm beyond grateful for the opportunities. I was interested in the role because I wanted to ensure that the changes my coursemates wanted to see in our course were fought for, and that we also ultimately have fun and stay connected.

What is your usual process for receiving and dealing with feedback?

I'd usually receive feedback in-person after lectures or seminars, as well as online through email and text. I act on feedback as soon as it's received and update regularly, whilst ensuring my coursemates remain anonymous throughout the process of then consolidating feedback and addressing the issue with our School over email or in a meeting to discuss. I'll then update coursemates with progress and outcomes.

What achievements are you most proud of since you began your role?

I founded Surrey's Advertising, Marketing and Public Relations (AMP) Society in 2018-19 because my classmates wanted more networking and industry-based events. The Society thereafter worked with many companies, including Huawei and The Walt Disney Company, to launch many events across the year – in addition to organising socials and two intramural league football teams. The Society is now a division within Surrey Business Society.

I also organised and hosted a two-part 'Internships and Placements Event' at Surrey Business School, pushed for the Library's Student Engagement Forum to be open to PTY students online, and planned a series of online employability events against the pandemic. I also received the Placement Rep of the Year Award for 2019-20.

How has this voluntary role supported your personal development?

Being a Course Rep has definitely improved my communication and problem-solving skills – the role entails presenting positive and negative feedback at Joint Staff Student Liaison Committee meetings, and Board of Studies meetings, with our department so as to ensure that students' views are indeed represented here. Working collaboratively with academic staff and other Reps is ultimately shaped by effective communication. I've also improved my problem-solving skills by working for my coursemates through projects which address issues raised on our course.

Why might a student contact you, and how can they get in touch with you and your fellow Course Reps if they have feedback?

You can contact me at anytime with any course feedback, questions or suggestions – I'd love to hear from you! You can get in touch with me at nn00227@surrey.ac.uk and other Course Reps can also be contacted via their student email. Course Rep lists are typically on Surrey Learn and you can reach out to the Students' Union for contacts. Many thanks for reading, and please don't hesitate to reach out!

FEPS

Chemistry - Elena Melluzzo 

elena.jpgHow long have you been a Course Rep, and why were you interested in the role?

I applied for the role during my first year because I wanted to feel more involved in the department as well as getting to know my course mates better. I really felt like I had some big ideas for some areas in the course and I wanted to help in any way that I could.

What is your usual process for receiving and dealing with feedback?

With the new Unitu system, helping my course mates has never been easier. The anonymity is provided every time and the communication is a lot quicker. Before this, I used to receive the concern/praise and report it to the specific lecturer on behalf of the cohort and this took a long time to be solved because of the waiting time and the exchange of emails between the parts.  

What achievements are you most proud of since you began your role? 

The communication with the lecturers has been a lot smoother, and the environment we all work in is friendly and family-like.  Recently, I solved an issue between the department and students involving exams. After I represented the student opinion in a meeting with the module leaders, a favorable outcome for both parts was achieved and I really felt like I had helped solve the issues that had arisen. 

How has this voluntary role supported your personal development?

It's definitely a position that has increased both my confidence and my public speaking abilities. Moreover, having the opportunity of approaching lecturers and communicating outside of a teaching environment has given me the possibility to get to know them and establish a truthful relationship which is crucial to do the best job possible in my role as a course rep. 

Why might a student contact you, and how can they get in touch with you and your fellow Course Reps if they have feedback?

I always believed that there is no specific situation for keeping in touch, from a serious problem to a simple chat (especially during lockdown), everything is welcome, and I am always up for a chat. I have regularly invited my peers to contact me on social media and via emails or even by talking to me in person.

Computer Science - Polya Yaneva

comp sci.jpgHow long have you been a Course Rep, and why were you interested in the role?

I have been a Course Rep since I came to the University of Surrey. I was interested in this position as in its core it is aiming to help the students by improving the quality of their programmes through the gathered feedback. In addition, this role gave me the chance to not only better get to know my cohort but also build on many valuable skills.   

What is your usual process for receiving and dealing with feedback?

To gather feedback about our course I use different methods. I usually make Google Forms short surveys that I send via email or the social media group chats. Furthermore, my course mates could contact me directly whenever they feel they want to share some feedback. After receiving the feedback, I go through all the information and keep track of the main issues. Then during the meetings with the department staff together with the rest of the Course Reps, I present a summary of the gathered feedback.  

What achievements are you most proud of since you began your role? 

Since my first year of being a Course Rep, I have tried my best to represent the students' opinions. From everything I have done so far, I am most proud of the small wins we achieve during the whole year such as raised issues with lecture content, courseworks, exams and timetable clashes. Usually, those issues require to be solved quickly but they have a huge positive impact on everyone from the course.  

How has this voluntary role supported your personal development?

The range of meetings with both the staff and the rest of the Course Reps gave me the chance to build on my communication and presentation skills. In addition, the analysing and summarising of the gathered feedback gave me the chance to work as a part of the team and improve my organisation and quick problem-solving skills.   

Electrical and Electronic Engineering - Saif Haider

Picture Saif Haider.jpgHow long have you been a Course Rep, and why were you interested in the role?

I became a course rep at the beginning of this academic year when I applied for the one vacant spot. I wanted to be a course rep after seeing my fellow course mates in the role the previous year and the tangible difference that they brought to the course through all of our feedback.

What is your usual process for receiving and dealing with feedback?

Unitu has been an amazing addition for feedback in the university and is my go-to for most feedback matters. I usually tend to ask my course mates if there's anything that they need to be forwarded and then either put it up on unitu or depending on the nature of the problem, email our Head of Department directly.

What achievements are you most proud of since you began your role? 

In particular, I am happy with the reduction of recorded lecture lengths to make it easier for students to stay attentive and follow each lecture. This is much more effective than more than hour-long recordings where it is hard to stay focused. The head of my department also finds this a very positive idea and made this transition to smaller lectures easier.

How has this voluntary role supported your personal development?

After becoming a course rep, I have had to be more attentive to everyone's issues or any potential problems that could be brought back to the faculty, making me more self-aware and attentive to my surroundings. It also greatly helped polish my communication skills due to the nature of being a liaison between the faculty and students.

Why might a student contact you, and how can they get in touch with you and your fellow Course Reps if they have feedback?

A student could have an issue with unclear instructions on an assignment, an unrealistic deadline, or feedback for an assignment that missed its deadline, for any positive or negative reason. My university email has been the most common way students have contacted me, but anyone could put up their feedback on unitu and I and my fellow course rep would be notified of it. I would then move it to the public channel for the faculty to see if it gathers enough support. Our Course also has a group chat on which anyone could message me directly.

Mathematics - Erika Scott

maths.jpgHow long have you been a Course Rep, and why were you interested in the role?

I have been a Course Rep for a year and a half. I first became a Course Rep in my second year of uni and I'm now in my third and final year. I wanted to become a Course Rep after having some experiences that I felt should be improved and being a rep seemed like a great way to bring these up. 

What is your usual process for receiving and dealing with feedback?

Most of the feedback I get now is on MySurrey Voice. When the feedback I receive is something I can deal with, I would email the relevant member of staff with the problem and how the issue might be solved. Most of the time, feedback gets passed on to staff in my department through the SSLC meetings or through MySurrey Voice. In the case of some issues, where they're relevant to the whole university community, I have raised them with our sabbatical officers at the students' union or university staff at Student Voice Forums. The progress from these meetings then gets passed back to students through the Facebook page and their email.  

What achievements are you most proud of since you began your role? 

The achievement I am most proud of was initiating change in my department after last summer's exams. The exams were taking students much longer than the 3 hours we were told we should need, so I surveyed other students in my cohort to see how they had found the experience. I then took this feedback to the department. It was discussed thoroughly and measures were implemented to ensure the next set of 24 hour exams would be much less stressful for students. 

How has this voluntary role supported your personal development?

This role has helped me to develop my confidence at speaking publicly, as I have had to raise issues at Student Voice Forums in front of other students, union officers and university staff. I have also been able to improve my awareness of issues that different students face and the possible ways the university and union can help. 

Why might a student contact you, and how can they get in touch with you and your fellow Course Reps if they have feedback?

Students have contacted me about a range of issues including the structure of the new 24 hour exams, getting textbooks available digitally, how lectures can be improved and concerns about the safety of study spaces during covid. If anyone would like to get in contact with their Course Reps, they can use MySurrey Voice, email me (es00938) or use the Facebook page (UoS Maths Course Reps). 

Mechanical Engineering Sciences - Wiktor Kawala

wiktor.jpegHow long have you been a Course Rep, and why were you interested in the role?

I have been a course rep since October 2021. My interest in the role really stemmed from wanting to improve and make sure all feedback reached the staff so that they could make sure all our (virtual) voices could be heard and so that each module ran smoothly. As someone who enjoys interacting with people this was the perfect role to go for.

What is your usual process for receiving and dealing with feedback?

One of the best roots for feedback is Unitu, being able to comment and direct fellow course mates to the relevant people or department. Another great way is through cohort groupchats or private messages where all feedback submitted to staff is anonymous and can lead to improvements in relevant areas. Unitu is great for this as you can see the effect of your feedback. 

What achievements are you most proud of since you began your role? 

Having an impact on due dates and assessment/module delivery style are some of the greatest achievements to date as these all ensured that the wellbeing of students was something which was, and is, actively being considered by staff, which leads to greater productivity for everyone.

How has this voluntary role supported your personal development?

The role has really allowed me to gain soft skills, particularly communicating feedback whether that be emails or Teams meetings and it really allowed me to gain confidence in speaking to academics about our feedback with what works well and what could do with improving, knowing that your and my feedback is always being considered carefully. Compromise is also another important skill learnt as feedback which you or I may have might not always lead to the solution I may propose and being able to meet in that middle ground is something which I've really gained from this.

Why might a student contact you, and how can they get in touch with you and your fellow Course Reps if they have feedback?

Students get in touch with me for many reasons such as an issue with lectures, the delivery style of modules and what isn't working or if there are clashes with events and due dates such as the mass testing back in December. I always do my best to ensure the issues get resolved quickly and, in a way, where both staff and students are happy. A great way to contact me is via e-mail (wk00137@surrey.ac.uk) or through facebook , group chats or any other means.

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