Greenwich Students’ Union (GSU) is a registered charity and company limited by guarantee, providing services to students at the University of Greenwich in London and Kent. There are approximately 20,000 students at the University of Greenwich. A high proportion of students are commuting each day to campus and teaching is spread across three campuses.
Our services to students operate between Greenwich, Avery Hill and the Medway campuses. We are soon to conclude our Big Plan and have developed GSU services to achieve our two goals:
- Empower our members to change the world.
- Ensure our members have a great time at Greenwich.
The impact of COVID-19 has created challenges for all organisations and at GSU we have responded strongly to protect jobs and services. We have adapted our services to deliver more activities online and we are now slowly returning to face-to-face services following the Government’s roadmap.
In June 2021, the Medway campus SU staff team and services transferred to GSU from our partner Kent Union. We are committed to ensuring our future plans and services deliver across the three campuses.
A new GSU Strategy from 2021-2026 will launch in August 2021. We have considered the University Strategy refresh and will focus our services and measure our outcomes on the following six themes:
1) Student Voice/ Students as partners
3) Health and Wellbeing
6) Opportunities (inc. Community)
As a Trustee, you will help drive GSU team to achieve this strategy. We are seeking new Student Trustees to bring their passion, energy, and vision to our Board.
Student Trustees can study at any of the campuses. Meetings are held in person, usually in Greenwich and there is the option to dial in to meeting remotely. We will cover expenses to travel.
Our Trustee Board is Chaired by Dr Elizabeth Jones, and we have a total of 13 members made up of 7 external trustees from industry, four elected Student Trustees (Full-time Officers) and four appointed Student Trustees. We have a series of committees that operate alongside the main Board meetings and we are keen for you to join our Staffing and Governance Committee. The Trustee Board meets five times a year – November, January, March, May and July. There is an induction session planned each July for one hour.
GSU has an annual turnover of circa £3m. This is made up of an annual subvention grant from the University of Greenwich, grants, social enterprise revenue through traded services and gift-in-kind (donated services).
A summary of GSU Services
Membership Services – operating across Avery Hill, Greenwich and Medway
- Student Voice, Representation and Democracy – involvement with Student Assembly, campaigns, Elections and members representation
- Student Advice – provide advice to all our members regarding Health, Housing, Employment, Money, International Students, safety, academic and other issues not covered in the aforementioned.
- Student Activities – encompasses Societies, Sports clubs, Awards, Varsity and much more.
- Employability and Volunteering – identifying opportunities and providing support.
- Delivering parts of the University strategy – Action Participation Plan, Avery Hill, Awarding Gap, Building Academic Communities, Wellbeing and Retention.
- Greenwich - Change serves speciality coffee with personality and down in the depths of Dreadnought Building is the Lower Deck 500 capacity venue where the lower the sea level, the greater the party!
- Avery Hill – pop-up social events for students who are residents or visitors to enjoy.
- Village Shop in Avery Hill – selling take-away food and coffee, snacks and confectionery, in addition to a ‘convenience’ offering including groceries and toiletries.
- Medway – The Deep End. 400 capacity venue in the centre of the campus.
- Online - a range of official merchandise can be found on our eShop.
The success of GSU to generate money through our commercial revenue is a strategic priority as any profit made, we can invest back into providing services to students. We also provide jobs to students at Greenwich.
Being a Trustee
The role of a Trustee can be summarised by:
Working with other members of the Trustee Board to be responsible for overseeing the management and administration of the Union.
As a Board, have the ultimate responsibility for:
- The governance of the Union.
- The budget of the Union.
- Strategy of the Union, following a vote by members on the strategy and direction of the Union.
- Student Trustees are expected to serve for at least one year, although it is hoped that they will serve for two years. The Trustee Board currently.
- Meeting five times a year.
- Student Trustees can also be members of Committees (these are sub-meetings of the Trustee Board). These Trustees may be asked for some additional time commitment, which usually involves dealing with information by email.
- We will provide training to new Trustees to help ensure you know more about the role and how to make the most out of meetings.
There is no experience required but you must be a University of Greenwich student for the Academic year 2021/22.
You just need to be a member of Greenwich Students’ Union (i.e. a current student) with at least a year left to study at the University. You will be given an induction if you are given a Student Trustee role, and support from the Students’ Union team.
Trustees will ideally have some of the following attributes:
- Strategic vision.
- Good, independent judgement.
- The ability to think creatively and problem-solve.
- A diplomatic approach and a willingness to speak your mind.
- The ability to work effectively as a member of a team.
- Effective communications skills.
- A willingness to devote the necessary time and effort.
- A commitment to the organisation.
- An understanding of the role and the duties, responsibilities and liabilities of trusteeship.
How to apply
To apply please email CV to firstname.lastname@example.org and answer the three questions in a Word document:
1) Tell us a little about yourself
2) What do you know about the Students' Union
3) How do you think you can help the Students' Union Trustee Board
NThe Chair of Trustees and President will then review applications and if successful will invite you for a Microsoft Teams introduction meeting in early July. The Chief Executive will provide a full induction.
The next GSU Trustee meeting is Tuesday 27th July 2021 from 6pm – 8pm which we hope the successful candidates can attend.
The GSU Articles and Policies can be found here: read our Articles and Policies
The GSU Trustee Handbook can be found here: read our Trustee Handbook
More details about GSU Trustees can be found here: find out more about our current Trustees
Please note that, in accordance with the SU’s governing documents, legislation and NUS guidance, you are not eligible to be both a Student Trustee and an employee of the SU, and/or an elected Faculty Officer, and/or an Elected Activities Executive.