"UCLan Students’ Union, like UCU, is a membership led, democratically driven organisation. The values we hold as important are the same values that underpin UCU: collectivism and campaigning. As such when UCU enact these values to strive for positive change for their members, we support that. We support it because these are the same principles and values that we seek to enact." - quoted from the SU website.
UCU members are striking over pensions, pay, and working conditions. And I know as students, it’s frustrating that you’re losing out on lectures, workshops, and lab time because of these strikes, especially when you’ve paid your tuition fees. However, if you look at the UCLan student infographic, you can see it is a fraction of your tuition fee that is spent on teaching, which goes to the university, not lecturers directly. Value for Money Statement - UCLan
As Vice President Education, I advocate for so many positive changes on behalf of students for academic staff to implement but I see lecturers not only teaching, but working on research, being part of working groups and committees, and sitting on panels. This is a lot of work for relatively low pay. I think it’s important to support teaching staff during strikes because the way they are treated directly impacts the teaching students receive.
Obviously, I’m part of the Students’ Union and our membership is students. In the last set of strikes, we remained neutral but I had students asking me how they can support their lecturers, so this time I want to open the conversation up about if you want to support academic staff and how you want the union to do that.
Please leave any feedback in the comments – very happy to hear both sides of the argument!