We hosted our first Student Town Hall event of 2022 this week, with Principal David Sexton delivering vital information for this trimester and year ahead and Adebisi Sasi, Vice President of the Students' Union (SU) also touching on relevant topics to the SU and assisting the Principal.
The Principal explained to attendees our current response to the ongoing pandemic and how the university is supporting them and enabling measures to keep our campuses safe alongside having learning experiences prioritised. After attending the SSLC (Staff Student Liaison Committee) meetings, it was made clear to Sexton that the overall consensus from students was virtual learning initially and so he relayed ARU London's plan for January would be:
UNTIL 30th Jan:
Virtual classes only
Buildings remain open for access to learning resources
PLAN from 31st Jan:
Physical face-to-face and synchronous classes
Assessments virtual except those linked to Prof Bodies
Temperature monitoring will remain on entry
Providing Covid Test Kits for all – encouraging use
Wearing of face-covering encouraged when moving around
Rooming will be fixed for students for the whole day
Hand sanitisers throughout the Campus
Encouraging the maintenance of excellent hand/toilet hygiene
Continuous building cleaning
There was also reassurance that the physical services and resources students will have used in the previous trimester would be continued online, such as the Employability Scheme, Wellbeing assessments, and contact to each student support team - available through their VLE tiles, email, and Live Chats.
The Principal wanted to stress the differences between the learning experience: virtual and face-to-face, understanding that it can be difficult but full engagement from home is crucial to achieving the best learning and so he encouraged cameras to be on and being in an appropriate study space with minimal distractions.
Attendees also gained an update on the new Student Experience Survey (SES) results, for which the university's resources and services received strong satisfaction rates, and as ever we are grateful to receive feedback from students on what is successful and what could improve internally to the university.
The university has launched a new Enterprise Hub, including a club for budding entrepreneurs. The Hub will offer support to all students and alumni of ARU London, and the Enterprise Club will offer learning sessions, networking events, and opportunities for business growth.
Going forward, students were updated on the Attendance Bursary, which will now be the Transport Bursary. This will be reintroduced in May 2022, and we are hoping to be able to continue on with face-to-face delivery of learning at this time too, which the bursary will aid with.
In addition, there will be new methods of attendance and ID, both now available through students' phones using the myARUL app. The new attendance guide can be found here, we recommend all students explore the VLE on their phones and report any issues via the method on the guide as this will be crucial when returning to campus after January.
You can catch up with the Student Town Hall events by watching the recording here.
We look forward to seeing you at the next Student Town Hall events in trimester 3 - May.