One of our primary roles as a Students’ Union is to advocate for those that study here at AUB, to champion the issues that are important to them so that everyone has the best chance to succeed at university. Sometimes these concerns are easy to identify, but this year we noticed something different about life on campus that at first was hard to articulate. However, as the months rolled by, it became obvious. Campus was less lively. Students weren’t as engaged in their studies or the extra-curricular activities on offer. And more and more individuals were coming to our office or sending us emails about feeling lonely, lost, and overwhelmed.
While we were able to see that there was a problem, what we couldn’t work out was why there such a difference in the atmosphere this year. Therefore, we decided to launch our Big Student Check-In campaign to find out exactly what challenges our students were facing and how we could help. While most SU campaigns are focused around a specific issue, we tried to keep the Big Student Check-In as broad as possible so that we could really take the opportunity to listen and let the students tell us what they needed in their own words. However, we did identify three areas which we were keen to investigate, and the following report
summarises our findings for these key themes: student wellbeing, access to education, and EDI.