THE APPOINTMENTS COMMITTEE
By Cinnomen McGuigan, Vice President Education and Chair of Appointments Committee (2020-2022)
The Appointments Committee is a small group of student representatives from a range of working and family backgrounds, we span faculties, nations and are all at different stages of our OU studies. We are appointed by the Students Association Board of Trustees, and we decide which applications will be accepted to become a volunteer Central Committee Representative and/or some categories of Senate Reference Group member.
The Appointments Committee spend a lot of time together online, with the odd face to face session to make sure that we work well as a team to get the best possible people into the spaces that we need reps to cover. Most of us have been around in one representative space or another prior to coming to Appointments Committee, so we have a wealth of experience that we can put to good use.
One of the main pleasures for me is seeing the new Central Committee Reps that we have appointed post their views and reports in our forums after their first few meetings. It shows that we are getting it right, and that we are ensuring that the reps that are chosen are empowered to play a full part in the Academic Representation process. Seeing those first reports, and hearing how the different Central Committee Rep teams are coming together to make changes - makes the role a really worthwhile and valuable one. Having a bunch of experienced reps already around promoting their work, allows us to be more willing to promote opportunities for newer members coming through.
One of the things I have found from this role on the Appointments Committee, is that some volunteers are not very willing to sell themselves fully in their application. I know it is hard as I do it myself, but we see it time and time again where people hide their light. We really need applicants to be more outgoing in demonstrating to us how they are the best fit for the roles. Its useful to understand about transferable skills. I am totally going to take my own advice onboard too, because I can do better at promoting my own valuable skill set properly.
Being on a committee like this, you can help make sure that we have student voices being heard in every corner of the university. We can make the student voice heard on smaller panels and workshops, and also by being actively involved in our committees and making sure that we are treated as full members in the room. There is so much potential for having students raise issues at this level. It means that the university is taking our thoughts and concerns into consideration at every step. And to feel like you are a part of that, is awesome.