Four new sabbatical officers have been taken on board by the University of St Andrews and are settling into their new roles, preparing for the busy academic year ahead.
Following their successful elections in March, the sabbatical officers have now taken up their full-time positions having completed two weeks of intensive training given by their predecessors.
Heading the new team is President of the University of St Andrews Students’ Association Andrew Keenan (21) from North Berwick, East Lothian. Other sabbatical officers are: James Shield (Director of Representation), Philippa Dunn (Director of Student Development and Activities), and Stacy Lee (Director of Events and Services). Alex Cooper fills the post of Athletic Union President this year.
Andrew Keenan graduated this June in Arabic and Middle Eastern Studies, and is looking forward to a busy but rewarding year as President of the SA. He believes that the new team members have a good mix of interests and experience to tackle the many issues that they will encounter.
Andrew has been involved in numerous student activities throughout his four years in St Andrews. Beginning as a rookie features writer in 2004, he was the Editor in Chief of award-winning student newspaper The Saint from 2006 to 2007. He was also Press Officer for the successful FS:08 Fashion Show, which raised over £28,000 for charity.
As well as organising events for students throughout the year, including Freshers’ Week for the new students, the team have many other long-term aims.
“My goals for this Presidential year include working on the Union redevelopment, improving town-gown relations, and increasing representation on a national level to both Westminster and Holyrood,” said Andrew.
“I am also keen to create a more visible media presence for the Association, and to continue the search for a solution to the increasing problem of affordability in St Andrews.”
James Shield (20) from Lundin Links, Fife is the Students’ Association’s new Director of Representation. A third year student of International Relations, James is taking a year away from his studies next year in order to work in this sabbatical role.
James’s ambitions include improving implementation of the class representative system, awareness of the Association’s advocacy services and effective campaigning on national issues. His recent work with MSPs secured a debate on tenancy deposit protection schemes at the Scottish Parliament in June – an issue he hopes will become one of the government’s top priorities in terms of housing policy.
At a local level, James believes that the redevelopment of Fife Park and the University Library are the areas of greatest student concern for the immediate future, and is keen to encourage high levels of student consultation and involvement in these projects
Having just completed a degree in English, Philippa Dunn (22) will take on the role of Director of Student Development and Activities. Originally from Derbyshire, Philippa has been heavily involved in student activities, societies and subcommittees throughout her time at St Andrews. Her particular interests lie in student radio and theatre, and she is excited about the opportunity to support and facilitate all the projects, events and ideas of more than 120 societies, as well as furthering the development of the new Barron Theatre as an exemplary arts venue.
She said, “St Andrews is proud of being the university with the most positive Student Experience, and that is largely down to the opportunities offered by the Students Association. I want every student to be able to make the most of their time here no matter what their area of interest.”
The position of Director of Events and Services for St Andrews University Students Association will be undertaken by Stacy Lee (22). Stacy is a recent graduate in Mathematics and feels that his four years here have given him a strong foundation for the tasks ahead of him.
Stacy has been involved in numerous activities, ranging from the University Taekwondo club to the student radio station, ‘STAR’. He hopes to put on an exciting range of new and different events that students will enjoy and benefit from. Stacy’s remit also extends to publicising the wealth of services offered by the Association.
The post of Athletic Union President is filled by Alex Cooper (23). Alex has just graduated with a degree in German and Spanish. During his undergraduate years he was involved in STAR radio and was President of the Boat Club.
He plans to build on the very solid groundwork of his predecessor, whilst employing a fresh emphasis on sponsorship and promotion of sport at St Andrews.
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