Welcome from the Student Officers

A very warm welcome to the February/ March edition of the Teesside University Students' Union newsletter. We will be in touch every month this academic year with our latest news and events unless you ask us to stop by unsubscribing.

In this edition, we are celebrating being one of the first students' unions and universities to secure the prestigious alcohol impact accreditation (full story further down) and we are looking forward to the opening of the Student Officer and NUS National Conference Rep Elections 2020  from next week! It might mean a couple of us lose our job but we still hope all current students at the Uni will consider running for these unique and incredibly rewarding opportunities. There are full details and links/ contacts to find out more, further down.

We are also excited for more great events before the spring break, day and night, including the eagerly awaited return of the Tees Wear Varsity and the always wonderful Societies Awards. And we hope you will take a few minutes to tell us what you think in our Student Opinion Counts survey and, for final year students only, the very important and influential National Student Survey. Your feedback CAN and WILL make a big difference!.

We hope the early part of 2020 and the start of Semester 2 is going well for you. No matter how your student life is working out, your SU is always here for help, support, advice, events and spaces, so make sure you get yourself in whenever you can. Have a great month, and make sure you say hi if you see us around the building or campus!

Have a great first few weeks back at Uni and remember that; however things are going, your TUSU is here for you. We look forward to seeing you in our building and around campus.

Sophie, Alan, and George – Student Officers 2019/20.

tees-su.org.uk/officers

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Just one week until you can be part of the TUSU Elections 2020!

TUSU is led by students for students, and from Mon, 24th February to Fri, 28th February, any current student* can run in our elections to find the next three Student Officers (President Education, President Welfare and President Activities). In a separate poll, they can also stand to be one of the four National Union of Students (NUS) National Conference Representatives.

As a student officer, you will be paid over £21,000 per year to work full-time for at least 12 months from mid-June 2020. Students can only run for one of the three positions, but they are all unique opportunities to make a real difference for all students at the Uni, represent them to the most senior figures at the Uni, including the Board of Governors, the Vice-Chancellor and his top team.

As an NUS National Conference Rep, they will attend the single biggest annual gathering of students and students' unions in Liverpool for three days at the end of March. TUSU pays most of your expenses, and it's a chance to represent Teesside Uni students on the big stage while all the big decisions facing the national student movement are taken. There's also a thriving social scene each night of the Conference with an opportunity to meet lots of new people.

Just running in the elections is a fantastic experience, and both the Officer and NUS Rep roles provide students with the chance to gain unique experience and skills that other graduates can only dream about. It would be helpful if candidates have been involved in the Students' Union as a club or society member, student rep, or member of student staff, but it's NOT essential. It's far more important that you are willing to work hard and are passionate about speaking up for all students, you will receive lots of training and support from standing in the elections and throughout your time in post.

And, once nominations close, it's time to start thinking about who you will vote for. We will add information about all of the candidates and what they aim to do on your behalf to tees-su.org.uk/elections from Monday, 2nd March, then find out more about them and put your questions at our Meet the Candidates event on Friday, 6th March. You can then cast your votes online through tees-su.org.uk/elections on Monday, 16th, or Tue, 17th March. The winners will be announced at our Elections Results Party on Wednesday, 18th March.

Check out tees-su.org.uk/elections and e-mail: elections@tees-su.org.uk to get any questions answered and to help you decide if running in the elections is for you.

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Great events every day this semester at your SU

TUSU is THE place to be seven days a week with something for everyone in our safe, inclusive, and internationally recognised venues during semester time. There are loads of unmissable regular weekly events plus special one-off occasions, and non-students are always welcome, so bring your family and friends! No matter whether you drink alcohol or not, you will be sure of a warm welcome!

Mondays - DJ Matty Morgan brings you the MASSIVE Monday Night Quiz. Fun themes, cash prizes, and free drinks to be won, loads of laughs, and top tunes between rounds.

Wednesdays - Sing your heart out to your fave songs and watch performances from others at our fun-packed Karaoke night. There are also some unbeatable drinks prices at the bar through the night with The Drinks Exchange. Make a real night of it by heading to Go Ninja at Spensleys on Albert Road, the biggest and best mid-week around! And...BRAND NEW...check out all of the songs we have available to play at karaoke online through tees-su.org.uk/karaoke which will soon include a Spotify playlist to preview and practice the songs from...don't say we never do anything for you!

Selected Thursdays - Enjoy one of the very latest movie blockbusters on screens around the first floor totally free! We've already shown Joker and IT Part 2 this semester with Terminator: Dark Fate coming up on Thursday, 5th March.

Fridays - Unbeatable drinks offers (including many non-alcoholic options) and top tunes from 5 pm and throughout the night in The Terrace. Whether you want to unwind after uni/ work or are out for the evening...make sure you start the weekend in style right here.

Saturdays - Warm up for the biggest Saturday night in town Shangri-La right here in The Terrace. Head in from 8 pm for unbeatable drinks prices, top indie and rock tunes from their resident DJs, and the chance to get discounted or even free entry to the main event round at The Empire on Corporation Road.

Weeknights and Weekends - We show all the biggest Premier League, European, FA, and Carabao Cup football clashes on screens around the first floor. There's also coverage of plenty of other sport, including all the big moments of the Six Nations rugby tournament and more besides.

Huge one-off events - Alongside all the regular fun, we like to treat you with some very special one-off events some run by the SU, some by partners. Again, non-students more than welcome so  please do tell your family and friends!

Vintage Vera returns to the building on Friday, 21st February, with another massive vintage clothing sale. Loads of top brands and all the latest styles at bargain prices.

• It's a lock-in overnight on Saturday, 22nd February, into Sunday, 23rd February, as we show the spectacular heavyweight boxing rematch of Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury. Great value food and drink available while you watch! Non-students very welcome to come in!

• Fun for all of the family at "Forever Frozen 2" on Sunday, 1st March. A fantastic live musical performance based on the animated blockbuster.

• The UK's biggest Emo night "The Black Parade" lands at TUSU on Friday, 6th March! Massive night of emo anthems and nostalgia as they play rock and indie hits from the last two decades! Everyone welcome, including non-students.

• We are proud to be the venue for the Middlesbrough Reggae and Ska Festival on Saturday, 7th March. Enjoy a day of superb live music from some of the UK's best reggae tribute acts and top tunes from their resident DJs.

The brilliant Bongos Bingo is back for another unforgettable night of fun, music, and fabulous prizes on Wednesday, 18th March. Tickets available at the time of writing, but they always sell out fast, so don't delay!

• The dynamic duo Jeff Stelling (Sky Sports and broadcasting legend) and Paul Merson (former Arsenal, Middlesbrough and England football star) are here with their hilarious show on Wednesday, 25th March. They’ll talk about their hugely successful careers and share some of the funniest moments from their time together on Sky Sports.

• We present another fascinating and chilling insight in to the mind of history’s most notorious serial killers on Friday, 27th March. Join forensics lecturer Jennifer Rees for another fascinating and interactive night looking at psychology’s most troubling topics.

Keep an eye on our events page on Facebook or tees-su.org.uk/events for more info and the latest updates.

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Campaigns Corner

TUSU is a students' union that is committed to real-world campaigns that make a genuine difference to all students at Teesside University. We'll keep you up to date with what our Student Officers and Campaign Reps are working on in this column every month and make sure you check out tees-su.org.uk/officers for more about upcoming campaigns.

The Officers and Reps have been out around campus all of this semester to gather your feedback. They want to know about your student life and how we can work with the Uni to make it even better. SU on Tour heads for the Centuria Building on 18th and 24th February from 12 pm to 2 pm. Then it will be in Teesside Uni Library on 2nd March from 12 pm to 2 pm and The Clarendon Building from 12 pm to 2 pm on 23rd March. If you spot the SU on Tour stand, make sure you stop for a chat, and even if you don't, remember that you can give us feedback anytime through tees-su.org.uk/suontour.

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Celebrating our super societies and student reps

The Societies and Reps Awards 2020 take place on Wednesday, 1st April. They will be another glittering occasion celebrating the amazing work and achievement of our societies, School, Course, and Campaign Reps.

We will recognise the best groups and individuals across many categories in front of an audience of society members, student reps, sponsors, and VIPs from the SU and the University. The various nominees will be announced on our social media and website on Friday, 6th March and tickets, priced a bargain £10, will on sale from the SU Welcome Desk or tees-su.org.uk/events very soon so keep an eye on our social media for confirmation. The ticket will include entry to the ceremony, a delicious meal and the chance to celebrate afterward in our venues.

In the meantime why not check out what happened at last year's event, there are pics and video from 2019 on tees-su.org.uk/awards.

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How to get help and support from the Students' Union

If you’re struggling with any aspect of student life or already have existing mental health issues then our SU Student Support (SUSS) and Nightline services may be able to help.

SUSS can assist with issues around housing and your housemates, money, your course, generally settling in to student life or feeling homesick, anxious or depressed. Nightline is our confidential listening service staffed by trained student volunteers. From 8pm to 7am on Friday, Saturday and Sunday (subject to volunteer availability) you can call them to talk about anything you’re struggling with and they’ll listen without judgement. If the service isn’t available remember that there is help available from the likes of Mind and The Samaritans while you should always call 999 in a mental health emergency.

And we’re always keen to work with partner organisations to widen the support we offer to students. We’ve teamed up with Arch North East and SARC Teesside this academic year to offer confidential support for anyone affected by sexual assault while Recovery Connections will also be in the building every Wednesday with help and support if you’re overcoming addiction to drugs or alcohol. Click here to find out more about all of the sessions.

Teesside University and TUSU are also working with Mind on a new project called “Mentally Healthy Universities” which is aimed towards first and final year students. The aim is to created improved awareness of and more support with mental health. Over the next 18 months, Mind will offer a series of sessions, run by experienced mental health trainers in a safe space, to provide students with techniques to look after their mental health and wellbeing. They will also empower students to seek appropriate help where required. Click here for more information and to complete a short survey indicating when you might be available for future sessions.

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The clash of the sporting titans returns this March!

The annual Tees Wear Varsity takes place on 25th of March at the University of Sunderland and sports facilities close by this year. A hotly contested feast of sport, it sees clubs and teams from Teesside University take on our friends and rivals from Sunderland across a range of different sports.

The university with the most overall points is crowned the winner of the coveted Tees Wear Varsity trophy. Teesside Uni is gunning for a fourth consecutive victory, and you can see the schedule for the day plus details of how to get involved as a player or spectator by clicking here.

We will also have live coverage from the event throughout the day across our social media, so stay tuned for video, pics, and results updates.

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Student Opinion Counts! Tell us yours and win up to £500!

Our year-round Student Opinion Counts (SOC) campaign is your chance to tell us about your student experience and win BIG CASH PRIZES for taking the time to do so! The more surveys you complete the more money you can win…complete all four to be in with a shot of winning £500!!!

SOC is divided into four short, simple surveys that launch at different points in the academic year and cover…

• The challenges you face in your everyday student life and your opinion of how well the University helps you meet them.

• Your opinion on how well-led and run the Students’ Union is and how aware you are of everything we offer.

• Your opinion of our opportunities for you to get more from student life and become more employable through clubs, societies, and other activities.

• Your opinion on the support, advice, and representation we provide.

• Your opinion on the evening events and venues we provide.

Find out more and complete them through tees-su.org.uk/soc.

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Great offers and unbeatable service in the SU Shop and The Terrace

The SU Shop (ground floor, SU Building) and The Terrace (first floor, SU Building) are open seven days a week from early to late with top quality products and service for your convenience! Non-students are more than welcome to use both of them!

Get yourself great value meal deals, snacks, drinks, stationery, course materials, Teesside Uni clothing, and more in the shop! There's also great offers and discounts, including this month:

• Tubes of pringles for just £1

• Vegan, Vegetarian, and Gluten-Free products from only £2

• 2 Cadburys Creme Eggs for only £1

• New range of pastries included in our great value meal deal.

There's also another reason to head into the SU Shop all of this academic year! You can now charge up your phone or other devices while you enjoy a hot drink and a chat and check out some great offers from big names at our brand new power tables!

Meanwhile, you can enjoy a wide range of delicious hot food, quality beverages, non-alcoholic, and alcoholic drinks in The Terrace. It's a great place to spend time with course mates and friends between lectures and seminars or when you're done for the day. Check out the 2019/20 menus by clicking here.

And, new this month...

  • New milkshakes including Vanilla, Crème egg and Flavoured(create your own) Milkshake- £2.85 each

  • New food items including cookies and ice cream, and 3 burgers- Parmo burger, Hunters Parmo burger, and Chilli Con Carne Burger. All Burgers available in the meal deal.

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Calling Final Year Students! Have your say in the National Student Survey and win big prizes!

The National Student Survey (NSS) is a chance for most final year students to tell the University and your SU about the good and bad parts of your entire time here. It's one of the biggest and most influential student surveys around, and the feedback has a significant impact on the decisions that the University takes and the issues we run campaigns on and work with the Uni to improve.

We're both so keen for you to complete it that there are some incredible prizes to be won including:

• £1,500 off further study at Teesside Uni for one lucky student.

• A VIP Graduation Reception in July 2020 for whichever cohort achieves the highest response rate.

Find out more and complete the survey through thestudentsurvey.com

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Fall in love with big savings and discounts this February! Get the Totum Card and app!

The season of romance and...let's be honest...cold, cold weather...is on us! Why not save on Valentine's Day and warm yourself up this winter with the only OFFICIAL Student Discount Card and app TOTUM, and the only one provided by National Union of Students (NUS).

For a one-off payment of just £12 you also get 12 months of savings on food, drink, cinema, fashion, music, learning supplies and much, much more! And you'll be doing your bit for TUSU as we get payments from NUS based on every sale of the card and download of the app!

>>> totum.com to order your card and download the app NOW

 

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Sign up to stay in Teesside Uni Accommodation

Drop into a free pizza night and chat with the accommodation team to find out why it's a great idea to stay in Teesside University accommodation this semester.

You can sign up to stay as a group of friends, or on your own. On-campus living for the duration of your course has so many benefits, including:

• good value rents • fast Wi-Fi • warden network • 24-hour security on campus • bills included • close to your classes.

Pop in for pizza and a chat. No need to book.

• Tuesday 3 March 2020 5.00pm - 7.00pm Student Life Building

• Monday 9 March 2020 5.00pm - 7.00pm Student Life Building

OPEN TO ALL FULL-TIME STUDENTS

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Teesside Uni and TUSU gain Alcohol Impact Accreditation

We were also delighted to be one of only seven institutions to secure, working in partnership with Teesside University, the new Alcohol Impact accreditation from The National Union of Students (NUS). This important initiative aims to promote a responsible drinking culture on campuses across the UK and is funded by The Home Office. TUSU and the Uni were required to work through a series of criteria that helps create the required culture. Amongst the key findings from the auditors was:

  • There is an incredibly strong partnership between the SU and the Uni, highlighted in interviews by staff from both organisations.
  • We both have invaluable links with external stakeholders in the local area and across the North East.
  • The quality of events on campus to promote alcohol awareness and wellbeing was a credit to excellent planning and partnership work.
  • The shared “Yes To Respect” campaign was widely advertised and a positive step towards ensuring students and respect and supported.
  • TUSU promotes and offers a wide range of non-alcoholic alternatives to reinforce the responsible drinking message.
  • Our commitment to the welfare of students experiencing alcohol issues shone through in our ongoing partnership with Recovery Connections. The weekly sessions offer students struggling with alcohol a chance to complete their course and engage in uni life.
  • TUSU has consistently secured Gold in the nationally recognised Best Bar None accreditation and finished 2nd in the UK in 2019. It again demonstrated our commitment to being a responsible licensed premises that aims to reduce alcohol-related crime and disorder.
  • TUSU and the Uni have both worked hard to provide an inclusive environment and events where non-drinkers can feel comfortable.
  • There is a clear action plan with corresponding Key Performance Indicators to help focus work, maintain momentum, and evaluate progress on the project.

 

Sophie Bennett, President Welfare at TUSU, added: “We are thrilled to be amongst the first to secure this important new accreditation. And, it’s particularly pleasing to see auditors recognise all the close partnership work that we do with both the University and a range of external agencies. It’s vital that while providing social spaces and events that all students can enjoy we don’t make it more difficult for students who struggle with alcohol to have a positive experience here at Teesside. I’m glad that the auditors agreed we are working effectively on this.

 

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All students welcome at Teesside Uni Learning & Teaching Conference

The Teesside University Learning and Teaching Enhancement Conference is a chance for both staff and students to discuss best practice, share ideas and identify areas of improvement in the learning experience at Teesside University. It takes place on 5th March 2020 and will include a range of sessions delivered by experts focussing on various themes including successful tutoring, student wellbeing student research and more. Click here to find out more and register a place.

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Nominate your LGBTQ+ heroes and honorary members of TUSU

Teesside University Students’ Union (TUSU) is delighted to be a partner in the prestigious LGBTQ North East Awards 2020. We are working with organisers Rainbow Foundation to encourage our students to both nominate individuals and organisations for the awards and to cast votes. And we are thrilled that the "Inclusive Workplace" award will also be named as in association with TUSU, and we will be represented at the event this spring. Rainbow Foundation a registered charity based in the North East, supports the LGBTQ community across the region. The awards celebrate the positive contribution of individuals, businesses, and organisations have made in their communities are coming into their third year. They also provide volunteering opportunities for students from across the North East which, this year, will include some from Teesside University. Nominate groups and individuals who you feel have made an exceptional contribution to LGBTQ+ life in the North East before the end of February here.

And we are looking for your suggestions for which exceptional individuals to recognise with the Honorary Life Membership of Teesside University Students' Union at the end of April. If there is someone who you think has made a really special contribution to student life at Teesside University and/ or TUSU over the past few years why not take a few seconds to nominate them by clicking here. The awards panel will then review your nomination and decide on a shortlist and winners...please give as much detail as possible about what you think the nominee has contributed and achieved. 

 

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Student Safety Tips

Teesside is, generally speaking, a great place for students to live where you’ll find you’re made very welcome! However, it’s always important to think about your personal safety/ wellbeing and the ways that you can minimise the risk of being affected by crime. Here’s a few handy tips from the Students’ Union.

  • If you’re going to be living in rented accommodation ensure it has a working smoke alarm, carbon monoxide detector and up to date gas safety certificate. Contact your landlord or letting agent immediately if you notice any issues.
  • Try to keep your valuables securely locked away and out of sight when you’re heading and always ensures windows and doors are properly locked.
  • Try to avoid cooking at home if you’re very tired or you’ve returned from a late night out and consumed a lot of alcohol.
  • Try to get to know the area as well as possible and know the places to avoid, also stay in groups and well lit areas after dark wherever possible.
  • Cleveland Police advise caution when engaging with beggars on the street and ask that you don’t give them money as it often only worsens their problems and makes it hard for support workers to help them.
  • Uni is a time for making lots of new friends but try to fully get to know people before you’re alone or intimate with them.
  • Be mindful of possible drink spiking when on nights out, never leaves drinks unattended and only leave them in the care of people you know and trust.
  • Drink alcohol responsibly, avoid mixing drinks and NEVER drink and drive!
  • We strongly advise against using illegal drugs…you’re risking prosecution and they can be very dangerous especially if supplied by someone you don’t know.
  • Remember you can speak to Cleveland Police regularly here in the SU Building if you have any concerns about your safety or just want crime prevention advice/ freebies. Dates and times when they’ll be in are published across our social media and tees-su.org.uk/daytime.
  • We run many campaign days around student safety published on our social media and tees-su.org.uk/events while we have a dedicated student safety web section tees-su.org.uk/safety.