As our curent PCSA team get ready to hand over to the newly elected candidates, we caught up with Sophie Preece to find out how her time as President of PCSA has been and what her hopes for the new team are!
This last year has absolutely flown by. It seems like only yesterday that we were starting in our roles as the new PCSA of 2015/16. It has been a busy few weeks organising applications, conducting interviews and we were able to finally announced the new PCSA of 2016/17 on Monday (7th March) evening with a drinks reception on the 10th floor of the Strand office. Congratulations to all the candidates, especially our new President James Wright and Vice President Tom Cowley who undertook the election process and gave some great speeches.
This year we took on the challenge of starting the societies process from scratch. When we started there were too many societies and not enough commitment or student numbers to keep them going. In the light of this, we thought we would restructure the student experience and have a series of pop-up events instead. The idea behind this was that if events were popular they could be repeated and if there was enough student engagement then these can form a society. This has already happened with Investment Club and Debating is coming close to becoming a society as well. To aid this process we created 5 different channels where these events could fall under. This way we could ensure there were a variety of events and something for everyone. To make the PCSA more sustainable for the future the roles we have established and opened up for the new team were as follows:
- Vice President
- Head of Active
- Head of Charity
- Head of Culture
- Head of Education
- Head of Nightlife
We also set up a separate finance unit with 3 roles to ensure that processes are followed correctly and there is clear communication. The roles available were as follows:
- Financial Liaison Manager
- Financial Budgeting and Funding Manager
- Financial Reporting
There have been many things that I have enjoyed this year. A particular highlight was the Christmas Party which was a great success. It has been a good experience organising events and understanding what is involved from finding a venue to promoting it throughout the college. Another highlight has been the ability to work with other students who aren't on my course and to get to know students across all levels and courses. I have loved having the opportunity to get more involved with the running and development of PCL in general.
I would highly recommend students to get involved with the PCSA or at least work alongside them in organising events. It is a great opportunity to meet and work with people outside of your course and across the different levels. As part of the PCSA you have more of an influence and say in how the college is run and you are able to communicate the student voice to the staff. This involvement also allows a better understanding of how a university works and what the processes are to gain university status and our own accreditation.
For the future of the PCSA I hope to see the channels grow where there will be a marketing manager, finance, media content editor, venue coordinator etc. roles under each channel head. I hope that there will be a set of established events that have become societies with a good number of regular student attendance. I hope to see students engaging with the vision and values of PCL as the University of the future.
It has been a challenging and exciting experience being part of the PCSA. I have learnt so many things and enjoyed working alongside the rest of the team. Thank you to all the old PCSA for all their hard work, time and commitment. Thank you to the staff for listening and acting on feedback we’ve provided and providing opportunities to grow as a team and individuals. I wish the new PCSA all the best for the year ahead!