Strathclyde Students’ Union are thrilled to announce that they have won the Democracy award at this year’s NUS UK Awards.
Presented at their awards ceremony in Birmingham on Wednesday July 4, the award recognises the work carried out by Strath Union in ensuring and promoting fair representation amongst students across campus. The Union developed and ran the highly successful ‘This Strath Girl Can’ campaign, which aimed to empower and encourage students across campus to be active throughout their time at University, as well as celebrate achievements from some of the University’s students and staff.
The NUS Awards have been celebrating the work done by Students’ Unions for nearly ten years.
They are an opportunity for Students’ Unions to gain national recognition for their efforts and to celebrate their successes over the past Academic year.
The ‘This Strath Girl Can’ campaign coincided with this year’s Student Elections, in which the Union wanted to highlight the importance of female candidates standing for a student executive position. Prior to the Student Elections, a 2017 Gender Review - undertaken by former Strath Union Vice President Diversity, Simran Kaur – highlighted the lack of women represented within all elected roles at the Union; and also in the lack of female candidates standing for election in the first place.
The campaign focused on myth-busting towards perceived barriers to standing for election and communicated female success stories from Strathclyde and other student communities. The success of the campaign is evident in the election results, with a gender balance reflective of the University population making up the Student Executive this year.
The full campaign can be seen here.
Taylor Wong, previous Vice President Diversity, said: “It was so exciting to hear that Strathclyde Students’ Union won the award. The priority of the campaign was to have more female candidates standing for Strath Union roles, specifically Executive leadership positions, and increase the number of candidates.
“With the communication and promotion of the campaign, we had an increase of female candidates, standing for executive roles; from one in 2017 to 15 in 2018.
“I really want to thank everyone who got involved with the campaign and I really look forward to seeing how it will develop over the years.”
Sara Cowan, Vice President Volunteering & Development and ‘This Strath Girl Can’ case study, said: “The campaign was very well conducted and I am so happy that the Union has received recognition for all the work put into all the democracy campaigns and workshops.
“It was a great experience to be involved and I have high hopes for people getting involved in the future, so that they can have a similar experience.”