Board of Trustees Update - February 2021

President Kate Roberts updates you on the key topics of discussion from the latest Board of Trustees meeting.

As a Charity, our Board of Trustees are legally responsible for the organisation; the Board helps set out our strategy and provides guidance and expertise.

As there is often so much going on under our roof, we know it can be a bit confusing to understand where decisions are being made, which is why we aim to update you on the discussions held at our Board of Trustees.

Due to the nature of this unusual academic year, we have held more regular Board of Trustees meetings, to ensure that all trustees are informed and able to make important decisions.

Last week, I chaired our most recent Board of Trustees meeting, where we welcomed a new External Trustee, and a new Student Trustee onto the Board. I am pleased to now share the key topics of discussion with you.

Update from the Officers

At every Board of Trustees meeting, the Officers provide an update on the work we have been undertaking. The recent meeting included updates on; the Housing Policy Inquiry, our imminent academic societies review, an upcoming Student Insight Report on joint honours students, planning for our Academic Rep Conference, work undertaken in relation to the University’s Fairness and Assurance Policy, anti-racism work, support for the RHUL University Challenge team, the upcoming Let’s Talk About Sex campaign and the launch of Committee Cafés for student groups.

Update from the CEOs

At each meeting, an update is also provided by the joint CEOs. The recent meeting included updates on; budget reforecasting for the 2020/21 financial year, a recovery plan for the next three years of the organisation, University Rapid Response meetings, and other partnership and sector engagement.

2019/20 Financial Statements

Our auditors attended the Board of Trustees meeting to present the audited financial statements to the trustees.

Annual Health and Safety Report

An update was provided to the Board on the annual Health and Safety report detailing the work of the Students’ Union Health and Safety Committee over the last 12 months. The report also identified the streams of work that will be prioritised over the remainder of the academic year.

Charity Governance Code

Board received an update on changes to the Charity Governance Code published in December 2020 (namely in relation to the Integrity principle and the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion principle).

Student Trustee Recruitment

An update was provided to Board on the timeline for Student Trustee recruitment for the 2021/22 academic year, and a change in the process was approved to introduce the option of extension of the term of tenure for a Student Trustee to a second year, by invitation of the Board, if the Student Trustee has demonstrated commitment, interest and aptitude to the role.

I hope that you found this of interest and that it went some way towards explaining how the Union works. As always, if you have any questions or queries about any of the information above, or would like to find out how you can get involved in the Union’s decision-making processes, feel free to email me at president@su.rhul.ac.uk.