March saw the second meeting of the UK SoR Student Rep Forum in Manchester.
Set up in 2018 by SoR student membership officer Nic Smith, the forum was designed to create a platform from which active student members could tackle issues affecting the future workforce, and to form an open link between the student body and existing professional committees.
It comprises members from both diagnostic and therapeutic radiography courses across the UK, most of whom also sit on regional councils and are actively working in their respective areas to improve student involvement and inclusivity within the profession.
After electing a committee of Nichola Jamison (chair), Kate Shrewsbury-Gee (vice-chair), and Jovi Mullen (secretary), the first meeting in December 2018 at SoR HQ was largely concerned with outlining the aims of the forum and looking ahead to ADC 2019, highlighting relevant and current issues affecting students in our respective regions.
Having established the forum, an agenda was very quickly formed for a busy meeting in March 2019. Our first guest speaker was SoR professional support officer Dr Tracy O’Regan, who gave an informative talk on student initiatives, opportunities and awards within the Society, and how these could be accessed.
Special interest groups were also highlighted and an introduction to CPD Now. The plan is to provide training so that each rep can share with students in their institutions.
Next up was an update on Annual Delegates Conference 2019. In attendance was industrial relations manager Paul Moloney, who informed us that through various regions, five student motions had been passed by the Delegates Conference Committee for this year’s conference - a very successful outcome for the forum.
The next steps and guidelines were explained, and plans made to work further on the presentation of these motions ahead of April’s conference.
The highlight of the March meeting however (aside from Nic’s amazing chocolate brownies), was an introduction to the work of Equalise, given by equalities officer Peter Higgs, and Equalise member Joanna Southey.
Speaking on the effects of privilege, current campaigns and how we can become more involved, an insightful discussion was opened on how we can all work towards effecting change in the workplace. Plans were formed to create links between the forum and Equalise, and we look forward to working with them in the future.
Finally, we set to work on our new student campaigns. Focusing primarily on improving the student experience, many ideas, plans and tasks made for a very exciting and positive year ahead, placing undergraduate radiographers at the heart of the profession, and bridging gaps between the existing and future workforce.
I would like to thank all who have been involved in this from the start - from the student members to the professional speakers - and to Nic Smith for her constant guidance and knowledge.
The UK SoR Student Forum has been such a positive and significant development for today’s student radiographers. It moves us closer to collaborative partnerships within our profession and equips us to improve recruitment and retention through active promotion of radiography.
I am proud to be a part of it, encouraged by its acceptance, and hopeful for the busy year ahead working with some of the most enthusiastic and passionate students I have ever met.
To stay up to date with the forum’s events and activities, or to get involved, follow @SoRStudentReps on twitter. We would love you to be a part of what we do. Until then, see you all at ADC 2019!
Nichola Jamison is a second year therapeutic radiography student at Ulster University. As well as being chair of the UK SoR Student Rep Forum, she is also an academic course rep, president and founder of Ulster University Radiography Society, and one of the Council of Deans ‘150 Leaders’ 2019 cohort.