Hi everybody! Welcome to my UGM report. Give it a read below to find out all about what I’ve been up to since our last UGM in November:
Clubs of Keele Update
I have recently launched Clubs of Keele and Glock Give it a Go! Clubs of Keele is a campaign focused on raising awareness of taster sessions, what each sport is like, how easy it is to participate as a beginner at each sport and the ability to join clubs throughout the year. As part of Clubs of Keele, I am running Glock Give it a Go which clubs can sign up for me to attend training sessions or events and show students what goes on through my social media. I have had 12 clubs sign up so far, this campaign is running through the year, and I am expecting increasing participation from clubs as the year progresses through into second semester.
During Winter Welcome I will be using the material from Glock Gives it a Go to show students what sports at Keele are like and increase the number of sign-ups for clubs during the sports fair and for taster sessions. This will also tie in to plans to host the Winter Welcome Sports Fair in the Sports Centre, with opportunities for clubs to hold demonstrations and showcases to attract more members, this will also be a great chance to show off our campus sports facilities to new students.
Fatphobia AU campaign
I have been planning my Fatphobia awareness campaign that will focus on the issues of Fatphobia in sports as well as the wider society. I have been planning this collaboratively with students who self-define as fat and volunteered to get involved with highlighting specific issues they face as a result of fatphobia. I hope to raise awareness of the impact fatphobia has on people, the link between ableism and fatphobia, and showcase fat athletes to demonstrate that weight and ‘aesthetics’ has no impact on health or sporting ability.
Sharing Facilities with Staffordshire University Update
Further to our talks with Staffordshire University, we have successfully secured opportunities for a couple of clubs to share facilities as well as looking to introduce more into the collaboration. We have arranged for Volleyball to have coach-led sessions at the Staffordshire University campus, as well as introduced Swimming sessions at Fenton Manor where Keele are able to attend free social swim sessions weekly. As this program develops, we are hoping to introduce Squash and Tennis opportunities for Staffordshire University students to train at Keele.
Harper Adams Summer Games
I have been talking to Thomas Carmona, Vice President of Harper Adams Students Union, about setting up a Harper X Keele Summer Games (name to be confirmed) which will work similar to our annual Varsity event with Staffordshire University. I have contacted them to set up a meeting at Harper Adams University, in order to discuss the event further and to get a tour of their sporting facilities to gain an understanding of which events we can host and optimal dates.
Wednesday Night Socials Update
Since the last UGM I have finalized the new social spaces floorplan and the new system for socials bookings. Clubs have been assigned to week A or B and informed which dates coincide with each A/B designation. Clubs can now book from 1pm Thursday if it is their week for socials and from 2pm Thursdays the remaining spaces open up for all other clubs to book. I have also worked with our security team to restructure the floorplan for socials to create 6 additional spaces. This has allowed for many more clubs to host socials and has significantly decreased the stress on social secs as well as myself when it comes to securing socials, there is an extra layer of certainty that clubs will get a social on an at least fortnightly schedule now.
Past vs Present and Athletic Union Winter Ball
On Saturday 12th November and Sunday 13th November, we hosted our Past vs Present (PvP) competitions. This is our annual event in which we invite alumni to come compete against our current students in AU-wide tournaments. I attended most of the matches on the Saturday and made social media marketing content, raising awareness for many of our clubs as well as the benefits of joining our AU clubs. We also hosted a successful night out afterwards and were praised by students for the event. As this event is one of the major sporting events for many AU clubs, especially for smaller clubs who don’t compete in Varsity, we now plan to host a second PvP in February, with hopes of turning this event from annual to bi-annual for the foreseeable future.
We also held our Athletic Union Winter Ball on Friday 25th November at Keele Hall. This gave clubs a great opportunity to celebrate all their achievements for the year so far as well as get to know other clubs which they may not otherwise interact with, this year’s event was a huge success with an additional 100 people in attendance (from 350 to 450) all celebrating together as Team Keele.