Sparking Up

Unpacking the SRC Spark Up ticket

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Laura Middleton – Business & Economics Undergraduate Representative

Who are you?

Hi, my name is Laura Middleton, and I am a second-year student here at Macquarie. Since starting at Macquarie, I have always taken an interest in the needs of my fellow students and identifying areas for improvement on campus. Why is why I am running for the Undergraduate Business & Economics student representative under the Spark Up ticket.

What degree are you studying?

I am studying a Bachelor of Business Leadership & Commerce

If elected, what aspects of university life do you intend to improve?

  • Entertainment & Music on campus
  • Serious support for Business & Economics workshops and seminars
  • Better access to common rooms
  • Support for women studying Business & Economics
  • Access to free online textbooks

How will you do this?

I wish to increase the level of live music on campus by fostering local talent and sponsoring special music events during the semester. Students are crying out for a better atmosphere around U-Bar, this policy allows for this as well as making the U-Bar a destination for students to interact and enjoy the campus.

Currently, the only seminars and information nights on campus for my faculty are run by the faculty society. By working with entrepreneurs and experts in different fields, I want to ensure that Macquarie Business & Economics students are leaving with skills and knowledge beyond their degree.

Studying can often be a stressful process, especially with exams. The last thing students need is to be distracted by noisy and inconsiderate high school students. This is why I propose a Business & Economics common room, which is only accessible to students within the faculty. This can be done by converting an old classroom, similar to that of the Law common room.

It is common knowledge that within majors such as accounting and finance, women are the minority. This can often feel intimidating for undergrad students. To create a better environment for women within the faculty, I propose unique networking and counselling services, to create a stronger network and support system.

By following the program used at other significant Universities, such as WSU, Macquarie students would gain access to their textbooks for free online. Textbooks can often be a substantial financial burden within a student’s life and removing this strain would relieve stress & anxiety amongst students.

In your opinion, what are some potential challenges for the incoming SRC?

A big challenge that the incoming SRC have is the lack of transparency and trust between the student body and the committee. This is due to student publications, such as Grapeshot being ‘locked’ out of SRC meetings. Without, any sort of correspondence between the SRC and students, many students have begun to lose faith and trust in the SRC. I hope to overcome this by being more transparent and accountable in the work I do on the committee.

Sam Carroll – Science and Engineering Undergraduate Representative

Who are you?

I’m Sam, I’m the Spark Up candidate for Undergraduate Rep for the Faculty of Science and Engineering. I’m a mature-age student who’s been interested in science since my year-one teacher took us on an excursion to study insects.

What degree are you studying?

Advanced Science with a double major in Politics and Chemical and Biomolecular sciences. I promise I didn’t just pick the degree with the longest name.

If elected, what aspects of university life do you intend to improve?

For my faculty, workshops and extracurricular learning. I would also like to address the handicap access to 14 Sir Christopher Ondaatje Ave (E7B).
For the campus, I want to address the issues of mental health and sexual assault. I also want to work towards more live music and entertainment on campus, to both encourage campus social life and support the musicians and performers at the university.

How will you do this?

I want to work with the faculty staff to discuss the possibility of drop-in workshops for students who are interested in learning more, or students who feel like they need extra time to get their head around the technical aspects of their work, be it robotics or simple circuit construction. Further, I will raise the concerns of a few students who require ramps to make their way around campus safely, who have a number of classes in 14 SCO Ave and have issues with the lack of access within the building after the Wally’s Walk entrance.

I also want to see what can be done about improving the student-to-carer relationship in regard to mental health services on campus. Due to the nature of mental health issues, it is important there are avenues for professionals to follow up with students who are struggling, and important that teachers can get advice and information (with permission) about students who have special circumstances.

Live music and entertainment is a concern that simply requires some hard work to organise it. I want to reach out to musicians and entertainers on campus, or to those who know some, and get them on campus for weekly events. It will boost the campus social scene, it will benefit the performers in both experience and recognition, and it will be a boost to the businesses who are set up on campus.

In your opinion, what are some potential challenges for the incoming SRC?

Depends on who the incoming SRC is. Communication issues between students and the SRC is something any university council needs to deal with
It could as simple as disagreements on the council about what needs to be addressed and how to tackle it. That’s as likely to be due to personality differences due to the different faculties as it is political differences, in my opinion. For example, people in my faculty rarely approach things the same way as people from the Arts faculty