Hull University Union

Hull University Union

Hull University Union (HUU) is the students' union for The University of Hull. It is run as a completely separate entity to the university itself. It is run by students for students. There is a Union Executive Committee (UEC) which consists of 7 full-time sabbatical officers, 3 part time Union Executive Officers during term time, and the General Manager as an advisor only.

Union Council is the major scrutinizing body of Hull University Union, meeting every 3 weeks to scrutinize the decisions of the UEC.

HUU has a presence on both the Hull and Scarborough campuses. There is one sabbatical officer that is elected to manage the running of the Union in Scarborough.

The Structure of the UEC & The Charities Act

Currently, HUU is an exempt charity and the supervisory body is the University of Hull. Due to the new laws, that will change. HUU will become a registered charity and the supervisory body is the Charities Commission. Also, HUSSO/SCA, currently a separate charity as mentioned above, will become part of the same charity as HUU.

Some changes have already come into effect, for example, the trustee structure has already changed. There are now 7 trustees and only four of those are sabbatical officers, the President, Union Secretary & Treasurer, VP Academic Representation and VP Welfare & Equality. The other three trustees are external people who have prior experience in working in and/or managing charities, issues of law or business.

The Union Executive Committee structure changed as of 29th June 2007. There will be 7 full-time sabbatical officers and three part-time Union Executive Officers (UEOs). These UEOs will only operate during term time. The new UEC is (* denotes trustee, + denotes part-time UEO):

*President* Helen Gibson
*Union Secretary & Treasurer* Alexander Hamilton
*Vice-President (Academic Representation)* Richard Jackson
*Vice-President (Welfare & Equality)* Coralie Tringham
*Vice-President (Media & Volunteering) Wayne Buisst
*Vice-President (Sport & Leisure) Laura "Benno" Bennett
*Vice-President (Scarborough Campus) Mark Alcorn
*Chair ISA (International Students Association)+ Jan Zahuta
*Chair Campaigns+ Barry Nason
*Chair HUSSO+ Abby Lester

The new Media & Volunteering position is a merger of the sabbatical duties of the HUSSO Chair and the VP (Media & Communications). The VP (Media & Communications) was the editor of Hullfire, but because the workload of the new role is greater, the editor has now become a student role. Societies were the responsibility of VP (Finance & Democracy), (now restored to the title of Union Secretary & Treasurer) but that has now become part of the remit of VP (Media & Volunteering).

Chair ISA was a position that already existed, but it was a student voluntary role. As of 07/08 it will still be a student position, but it will also be on the Union Executive Committee. It will be the same with Chair Campaigns. The Chair HUSSO became a part-time role, still with a place on the UEC.

Because of the nature of the cross campus elections for the Executive posts, it is in theory possible for any member of the Union to stand for any post, and thus in the past this was capable of creating the anomaly that the VP-S&L (Cross Campus election) could have been held by a separate person from the post of President of the Athletic Union (Internal AU election) and the VP-SCA could have been separate from Chair HUSSO. While changes to the constitution/standing orders have removed the possibility of this happening for Chair-HUSSO, it is still theoretically possible to have the posts of AU president and VP-S&L held by separate elected officers as well and also the post of VP-Scarborough held by a student who is neither a resident of the town, or undertaking a course at the campus.

Over recent years (especially the last 10 years) there has been frequent changes in the roles and titles of a number of the Sabbatical officers, and an increase in their number from 5 to 8, until the recent reduction down to 7, which is still a high number in comparison to other Student Unions.


Like any student union, there are regulations governing the way it runs. The biggest recent issue regarding these was the change of the union's constitution so it complies with the Charities Act - a bill which expected to have royal ascent either this year or the next. The new constitution came into force on the 1st August 2007cite web|url= |title=Constitution of the Hull University Union|accessdate=2007-07-14 ] . Alongside the constitution, there are also Bye-Laws, Standing Orders and Policies & Procedures. The Bye-Laws and Standing Orders are also going through a period of change.

For the likes of Standing Orders and other regulations, they must first pass through the Union Executive Committee (a regular meeting of all sabbatical officers) and then be discussed and/or ratified by Union Council. In the case of the constitution, it has to also go through University Senate and finally University Council.


HUU has a strong reputation for providing a variety of events for all groups of people. One of the biggest events is the End of Year Ball. HUU also puts on a special event for all students who graduate in mid-July, just after all graduation ceremonies have taken place earlier that month.

Apart from these major events, many bands, both known and unknown, play live at HUU. HUU also put on other regular events, such as quizzes, film nights, and nights at the Union's nightclub, Asylum. One regular night that is popular is the Thursday night Karaoke [cite web|url= |title=Hull University Union Karaoke|accessdate=2007-08-02] .

The union has three bars, the John McCarthy bar, named after the journalist and Beirut Hostage of the same name, the "Resnikov" bar, and 'Sanctuary', which includes an outdoor area (the Keith Martin Terrace) and BBQ facilities. However, Sanctuary is the only bar in the Union that is normally open during the day, though the John McCarthy bar and the Resnikov bar can be booked for events. The Bar in Asylum is also called "Armstrong's" in memory of a student Pam "Spam" Armstrong.

HUU is one of the few student unions in the country to have its own nightclub


Asylum is the name of the nightclub that is owned by HUU. It is a £3.6 million purpose built venue/nightclub, open three nights a week during semester time to NUS holders and over 18s only. When more space is needed in Asylum, the adjoining John McCarthy bar is used if it isn't being used for other functions. Asylum was voted the best student venue in 2004.

The Athletic Union (A.U.)

The Athletic Union is a large part of HUU, which has roughly 50 sports clubs to which students can add by creating their own. It has its own executive committee, the president of which is also a sabbatical officer in the Union as the VP Sports & Leisure, and several of the teams compete in the BUSA leagues. HUU is one of the few unions in the country to provide the sport - it is common for universities to offer it instead. There are recently created 3G football pitches, two large sports halls, six squash courts and a state of the art Sports Science facility. There is also a gym which has received heavy investment over the years and can cater for all students' needs.

Scarborough campus

Hull University also has a campus in Scarborough, which has its own University Union, HUUSC. The Union building is on the third floor of the main university campus.

HUUSC is run by an executive team, chaired by the VP Scarborough Campus, who is part of the HUU Union Executive Committee (UEC). This "exec", as it is known, is made up of part time volunteer student officers who are elected in week 5 of semester 2, alongside sabbatical officers.

Each officer is responsible for a particular area of the Students' Union in Scarborough, and work alongside their sabbatical colleagues from the Hull Campus to ensure that Scarborough Campus students have access to the same facilities, services and opportunities as their Hull based counterparts.

For the academic year 2007 - 2008 the elected officers are:

*VP Scarborough Campus - Tom Metcalfe
*Academic Issues Officer - Kate Davies
*Welfare and Equality Officer - Sarah Francis
*Volunteering Officer - Alexander Wheble
*Societies Officer - Joshua Parkin Kelly
*Sports Officer - Christopher Zeal
*Communications Officer - Joe Dix
*Accommodation Officer - Natalie Ensor

For the 2008 - 2009 academic year an International Students' Officer will be elected. Their role will be to liaise with the International Students' Association (ISA) in Hull and make sure that the interests of International Students are taken into account by the HUUSC Exec.

HUUSC campaigns on various issues affecting Scarborouh Campus students. Campaigns include:
*Moving the Student' Union in Scarborough to the ground floor.
*Keeping Wednesdays free (for sports and societies participation)

BassMent! Radio, Scarborough Campus's radio station, is operated by HUUSC

The student magazine, "Scarborough Tide", is built by students and edited by the communications officer.

Volunteering in HUU

There are many areas that students of Hull University can get involved in. Each area has its own Sabbatical officer or part time UEO. The responsibilities of the officers of these areas and student opportunities are mentioned below.

Academic Representation

The current set of responsibilities that the VP Academic Representation has are mainly the recruiting and guidance of:
* Student Reps (of which there are over 300)
* The Training Team- Established in 1998/99 under the "Training Officer" (formerly the Assistant Vice President-Education and Representation).
* The Postgraduate Society
* The Mature Students Committee.

This sabbatical officer also attends a large number of university committees so that the student voice can be heard. One of those committees is University Senate (one of the top committees in the University), of which, as well the VP AR, the Union President, the University Secretary & Treasurer and 7 other elected Student Representatives attend to represent the Students to the top staff members of the University.

Recent developments in this area include activities related to PDP, IT, the National Student Survey, improving representation on the Scarborough campus, mature students and eLearning.

In the past, this position was known as "VP Education and Representation" and "VP Education & Welfare". The Welfare responsibilities eventually separated from this role to become VP Welfare Support Services and later on, VP Welfare & Equality.

Media & Volunteering

The sabbatical officer in charge of this area is responsible for:

*JamRadio - The union-run student radio station broadcasts over the internet on (introduced in 2006/2007, the net streaming is campus and halls only, but there are plans to expand this). It's a standing committee in the union and has a variety of shows that are both mainstream and specialist.
*Hullfire - In the past, Hullfire has been a newspaper, but 2006/2007 saw it become a magazine with a slicker look. The redesign has already been well-received by many students. Until 2007/2008 the VP Media & Communications was the Editor-In-Chief, however, due to increased responsibilities of the VP M&V, the editorial role has been taken over by an elected student volunteer. The sub-editors and the Deputy Editor are also students, and always have been.

Another area of responsibility is the Environmental Committee, for example, 2006/2007 saw significant activity in recycling.

This role has also been involved in the promotion and use of Fair trade products within the union.

In the past VP Media & Volunteering has been known as VP Media & Communications, VP Marketing & Communications and VP Services.

Welfare & Equality

The sabbatical officer in charge of this area is responsible for the Advice Centre, Nursery, Nightline, HUSAC (Hull University Students Against Crime), LINKS (St. Johns Ambulance Service), LGBT Committee, Equal Opportunities Committee, the Women's Officer, Men's Officer, Health Officer and Students with Disabilities officer.

VP Welfare & Equality also attends meetings of 'The Scheme' exec. The Scheme is a student accommodation setup in Hull to regulate landlords. However, the Union has recently noted that it will withdraw from 'The Scheme.' [cite web|url= |title=An important announcement for the attention of all students|accessdate=2007-08-02]

Recent developments in this area include the successful Alternative Red Ribbon Ball, being part of the promotion of 'Smart Water' and recruiting people for welfare-linked voluntary positions which had been vacant for some time.

This set of responsibilities used to be part of the role 'VP Education & Welfare' - a position seen in many student unions. However, due to the size of the remit, it split into two sabbatical positions several years ago (the other being VP Education & Representation, which eventually became VP Academic Representation, see above).


Hull University Social Services Organisation/Student Community Action, often shortened to HUSSO/SCA, or even HUSSO, is currently a registered charity in its own right (with HUU being an exempt charity). However, HUSSO is in the process of de-registering as a charity and becoming a part of the HUU charity. It allows students to participate in a variety of activities which benefit the wider community (kids, older people, people with disabilities). Currently, there are over 300 volunteers involved in HUSSO/SCA. The Chair of HUSSO is a part time member of the Union Executive Committee.

Community Volunteering

CV is a referral service for students wishing to volunteer for external community projects (unlike HUSSO where the projects are student-led). There is a wide range of projects available and CV will offer support and advice to all volunteers using its services throughout their volunteering. CV is based in the Union on both Hull and Scarborough campuses.


As part of the reforms of the Union Constitution, the Union now has a dedicated Chair of Campaigns, who is also a part time member of the UEC. The Chair Campaigns must run at least 3 campaigns a semester as per the Standing Orders. [cite web|url= |title=10.001 - Standing Orders Governing the post of Union Executive Officer (Chair Campaigns).|accessdate=2007-08-02]


ee also

*Jam 1575
*National Union of Students

External links

* [ Hull University Union website]
* [ Hull University Union Scarborough Campus website]

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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