Hannah's Year as Your President

Hannah shares her last update as SU President and how the role of representing you has been a true delight!

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Hello everyone! My last ever update... I’m not crying, you are.  

It has been a delight serving as your President over the last year and as your VP Societies and Sport the year before. I’ve mentally grown so much from when I graduated and began my journey at RHSU. I even got a couple of grey hairs and wrinkles to show for it.  

This is my very last update as President of Royal Holloway Students’ Union, so I hope this gives you a bit of a picture of what I’ve been up to this year!  

Student Safety 

Implemented SU Security recommendations

This year, I’ve worked closely with teams from the SU to implement the SU Security Review recommendations. We’ve increased roster numbers, explored and provided the current security teams with further Equality, Diversity and Inclusion training, and produced a Students’ Union complaints form (can you believe we didn’t have one before). As well as this, we’ve created a permanent page on the Students’ Union website titled ‘Keeping You Safe’. 

Shadowing SU Security

This was a big one for me; I felt like a hypocrite chairing SU Security Review meetings without actually knowing what it’s like from an event team and security perspective. On a Fetish Friday in Term Two, I had the joy of shadowing a shift (roughly from 9pm-4am). It was fascinating seeing the teams work together to ensure the safety of students and their guests.  

100% Bag and Person Trial

Our research on student safety when attending SU events in our venues showed that the most conflicting and discussed topics were bag and person checks. We trialled a 100% bag and person search for a period of time. The results of this were shared with our Events team and will be discussed in the coming weeks. I will also be writing a blog so you can find out the results and next steps there! However, it was good to see that out of those who answered, none felt ‘very dissatisfied or unsafe’ when attending our venues. Which is a massive improvement from where we were two years ago.

Campus Safety and Security Coordinating Group

This year, the University put together a campus safety and security coordinating group. In this meeting, I have raised student concerns and we’ve had good discussions so far.  

Student Wellbeing 

SHAG (Sexual Health Awareness & Guidance) Week

SHAG Week was all about confronting taboo topics, getting clued up on STIs (sexually transmitted infections) as well as running fun events for students to get involved in. We shared student experiences and ran a Sexy Pub Quiz at The Packhorse. 

Drug and Alcohol Awareness Week

Nisha and I ran a Drug and Alcohol Awareness Week at the start of Term Two. The week aimed to bring you exciting events, and educational activities and to raise awareness about alcohol and drug usage. There was a range of activities including mocktail making, a sober social and an awareness stall in the library. 

NeverOk Campaign

This year, I ran a year-long campaign focused on tackling sexual harassment and misconduct on campus. I worked alongside a group of students to put together an action plan which included a range of tasks for the Students’ Union and University. Unfortunately, not all of these have been completed, however, I will ensure the incoming sabbatical officer team are aware of the action plan and implement the remaining goals.

University Wellbeing Department Student Insight Report

During our Rate Your Union (RYU) survey last year, we asked for your experiences with the Wellbeing Department. From there, Elise (Research and Insight Coordinator) put together a report which included a list of recommendations. This has since been shared with the University. We’re aware some of the recommendations were implemented, however, we’re keen to push the University forward with this.

Cost of Living 

MP visit

This year, I was keen to get the Sabbatical Officer team involved in the national picture, especially with the general election coming up. As part of this, I organised and arranged a meeting for the team to meet the MP of Weybridge and Runnymede, Dr Ben Spencer. One of the topics we discussed was the cost of living. The MP agreed to write to the Education Minister on our behalf regarding the council tax payments for part-time students, specifically where they are in shared accommodation with other full-time students who therefore lose the discounted council tax. We also discussed a range of issues affecting students such as student safety, affordable housing, wellbeing and the experience of international students.  

Meal Deal Giveaway

The Student Voice team and I also put on a one-off free lunch event. This event was incredibly popular with over 150 meals going in less than 30 minutes!   

National Student Money Week

During March, the Advice Centre and I supported the University’s National Student Money Week by talking on their Instagram live panel. We discussed budgeting, how to find affordable housing and how our wellbeing has been affected by finances.   

Extenuating Circumstances Student Voice 

In my manifesto, I promised to work with the University to ensure students are supported by policies for when things go wrong and they’re unable to sit assessments.

Mitigation Policy Project Board

During my time as President, I continued Maia’s (President 2022/23) work by sitting on the project board for the mitigation policy project. My role in this was to ensure students' voices were heard in this meeting. As well as sitting on the project board, I was also involved in the mitigations policy comms group. 

Student Voice

To ensure student voice was heard in the development of this policy, I helped develop and promote an EC policy survey and organised a student workshop.

Alongside my manifesto... 

Not only do sabbatical officers deliver on their manifestos, but they also have a range of other responsibilities, especially as President.  

In all honesty, it has been difficult to balance the role of President. I did feel the step up from my previous role but fortunately, I had a great team, so it did make it easier. Below I’ve listed some key events and projects I’ve been involved in. However, I haven’t listed all the meetings I attended as we’d be here for days.  

Students’ Union governance

  • Student & external trustee recruitment  
  • Supported the recruitment of an interim CEO and now current CEO as well as organising and delivering the CEO Probation Review. 


  • Shared chairing responsibilities with Vice Chair and Principal, Professor Julie Sanders, at our joint Executive meeting.  
  • Chaired the Students’ Union Finance, Staffing and Risk (FSR) and Trustee Board. 


  • Co-hosted the Election Results Night with Alastair.
  • Presented awards at Colours Ball and Society Awards.
  • The sabbatical officer team had a fantastic opportunity of speaking at a Jim Dickinson Visit titled The Secret Life of Students. This session was delivered to a range of university and Students’ Union staff. We covered a range of topics such as cost of living, housing and belonging at university.
  • I also attended the NUS Conference and the London Students Assembly.