Published on 12th August 2020 at 15:59.
Meet your brand new full-time Officer team for 2020. Introducing the six people who will represent Sussex students to the University in the coming academic year. Find out what they will focus on improving for Sussex students this year!
Ijlal Khalid, International Students’ Officer
"Sussex needs to feel and behave like a truly international university.
International students need respect, equity, diversity, inclusion, tailored support, facilities, employment opportunities and a sense of belonging and not just be an afterthought for management.
In the last few years, our international student numbers rose from less than 10% to 42%. While we, the student body, have become exponentially diverse, other structures have not.
My work will focus on ensuring that we are leading the struggle on Anti-Racism, countering Prevent and the Hostile Environment, closing the BAME & International Awarding Gaps and improving our Support for International Students through Diversifying & becoming Culturally Competent.
International students are equal members of this university, not money-making tools and our voice needs to be heard!"
Get in touch with Ijlal:
Nehaal Bajwa, Diversity, Access and Participation Officer
"As your Diversity, Access and Participation Officer, I am really looking forward to pulling together some of the excellent work that’s already been going on at Sussex and joining up campaigns, initiatives, and work with other officers to make Sussex a more accessible place for its students. That includes ensuring that the University and the SU’s own student representation structures are clear so that students can use them.
I am especially interested in working with students and BAME Ambassadors on Anti-Racism and Disability Access, as well as trying to ensure an affordable student experience, and working with LGBTQ+ students, and trans and non-binary students, in particular, to make Sussex feel safer and more welcoming."
Get in touch with Nehaal:
Connor Moylett, Education and Employability Officer
"Education is a vehicle for imagining a different type of society. Too often, however, universities reproduce the inequalities they should be levelling.
Fortunately, Sussex students have never been happy just accepting things the way they are. From marching (from Brighton!) to London in support of Mandela and mass rent-strikes in the 70s and 80s; to taking over University buildings to protest extortionate fees in the 2010s right through to today’s campaign to decolonise our curriculum - Sussex students have always been willing to speak truth to power and demand more from our education.
Let's work together for a curriculum and a university that addresses the climate crisis and reckons with our colonial past. The SU is our collective voice as students - come and get involved."
Get in touch with Connor:
Roseanne Steffen, Student Living and Sustainability Officer
"Sustainability can’t just be a buzzword! I aim to work with students and staff to get climate justice - a fair and anti-racist approach to sustainability - onto the university curriculum, and into peoples lives.
Over the last few years, I was heavily involved in the youth strikes for climate in Brighton, and have witnessed the power students of all ages have in changing national conversations on the climate.
Here at the Student’s Union, we have many student societies and campaigns to get active in, to learn and socialise around issues that matter, from Climate Action Movement to the Food Waste Cafe."
Get in touch with Roseanne:
Annie O’Connor, Sports, Societies and Events Officer
"I’ve been at The University of Sussex for four years and during this time I’ve been proud to be a part of so many vibrant societies and campaigns. Student organising - be it through a sports club, society or campaign - is fundamental to the student experience. That’s why my focus this year is making the Students' Union the centre of student organising.
This means expanding communication with and support for student groups, as well as linking them together and providing clear channels of communication between them and the University. Political education in student spaces is key and we need fun, accessible, student-run events to provide this!"
Get in touch with Annie:
Paris Palmano, Wellbeing Officer
"As Wellbeing Officer, I am keen to tackle the key issues relating to mental health and student safety on campus and in town. This means lobbying the University and local council to meet the demands of student mental health and take reports of racism, harassment and discrimination seriously. We can also support this by providing vital services to students to fill current gaps in the system.
Developing effective signposting to student support services is half of the battle so this will be a priority. We also seek to support community projects on campus and encourage a culture of mutual aid among the student population to fight isolation."
Get in touch with Paris: