What is the Students' Union?

19 March 2019

Leeds Arts Union President Meg Ojari introduces Leeds Arts University Student Union!

Author: Meg Ojari

Hey, I’m Meg, I graduated from BA (Hons) Illustration this summer, and I loved my time at Leeds Arts University so much I wanted to stay! So, last spring, I was elected to be the Leeds Arts University Student President for 2018-19, and now work in the Students’ Union full time.

So, what is a Students’ Union you ask? Every student at Leeds Arts University is automatically a member of Leeds Arts Union, and I work in the Union alongside staff and the Exec Team (we’ll get to them in a min) to represent every single student here. We also ensure they get the support they need, and make sure they have the best time whilst they are here. We’re basically here to make sure every student loves their time at LAU.

Every day I get the pleasure of working alongside great team members, as well as a fantastic Student Executive Team. The Exec Team is made up of 13 fabulous current students who have taken on this role alongside their studies. They work to make beautiful student publications, fun fundraising events, exciting (and sometimes a bit wacky) events, successful campaigns and so much more. They also make sure that all students are represented, and have people they can chat to about what’s troubling them - we’re a friendly bunch so you should definitely come and say hi!

Ultimately, the Union only exists because of our students. They are the ones who tell us the events we should host and they start and run all the societies (we even have a very popular Cheese Society-vegans and lactose free welcome). Having even a tiny part in their success and growth is the reason I come to work every day.

I found it so scary picking a place to spend three years of my life (and spend a whole lot of money on), and honestly my first day at Uni terrified me. But I found Leeds Arts Union such genuinely lovely, approachable people, who really helped me feel at home at LAU. So that’s why I work in the Union now. To help every student through these doors to take a break, to have a chat about what’s stressful, and to fix the little things on their mind, so that they can focus on what’s important in their life. I might not be a miracle worker, but I can try my best!

I’m going to leave you with a bit of advice I wish I’d heard a long time ago: Starting Uni can be pretty scary. Sometimes it’s daunting going to new places by yourself, and that’s ok. Sometimes it’s scary making new friends, and that’s ok. Sometimes it’s difficult to deal with the stress of life, and that’s ok. You’re not expected to have everything under control *all the time*. Honestly, it’d be weird if you did! So please make sure you ask for support if you need it, even if it is just for a chat or a moan with a cup of tea, it’ll do you the world of good!