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July 20, 2014 | by  | in Opinion VUWSA | [ssba]

Exec Column

When I first came to university (wayyyy back in 2009), I had no idea what to expect. I thought I knew what it was all about – I’d gotten my courses sorted, I scored a spot in a Hall, and a few people from my high school were coming to Victoria as well. Within a week of getting here though, in the immortal words of Willard Carroll Smith Jr: “…my life got flipped, turned upside down.” Figuring out Blackboard, signing up for tutorials, getting ridiculously lost in the Student Union Building; and then there was O-Week. And Clubs Day. Did I mention Class Reps? How do you pronounce “VUWSA” and what do they do? It was all a bit of a kerfuffle that I really struggled with, and led to me changing degrees and eventually taking time off from study.

Now, five years later and very nearly at the end of my time at university, I’m proud to say I know the answer to most of those questions (VUWSA is pronounced View-Sa, not Voo-Sa), and have found so many more questions and answers to pursue over my time here. Big things like graduating, the real world, making a difference; small things like flat dynamics, keeping healthy, and time management. One thing I can take away from my experience at university and will be forever thankful for, is that VUWSA has been a huge part of it.

I’m not just talking about my experience on the Exec (which has been incredible), but all the things VUWSA does and has done. When I was broke as hell in my second year and had to choose between paying the flat power bill and food, VUWSA’s Food Bank kept me going until my paycheck came through. I’ve gotten jobs through Student Job Search (which VUWSA pays the fees for so it’s free to all Victoria students). This year’s O-Week and past years’ have been incredible fun. Class Reps have organised study groups and cram sessions. Every step of the way through my degree, VUWSA has been there – serving, advocating, fighting, helping. It’s been an amazing experience being part of the Executive this year and serving in this role.

The VUWSA Election opens for nominations next week. All ten spots on this team are up for grabs, and it’s going to be interesting to watch how it all unfolds. If you’re passionate about this university, about serving students, and above all passionate about making a difference – then grab a nomination form and get involved. It could well be the best single thing you do at university; not only for yourself – but the students you’ll help as well.

Declan Doherty-Ramsay
Engagement Vice-President



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