Apply now! Transform the learning experience of OU students

We're recruiting new academic reps - hurry, applications close at noon, Monday 18 October 2021

Posted on behalf of Cinnomen McGuigan, Vice President Education

If you have ever considered volunteering with the OU Students Association, you could not have picked a better time to do so

Check out our website to apply. Want to know more? Then carry on reading, take a look at our Frequently Asked Questions, or contact the Volunteering and Representation Team!

We are currently in the process of recruiting the next generation of academic representatives at the OU Students Association. These representatives sit on committees at the heart of the university's governance structure. Being actively involved in making this team more reflective of our student body is one of the key reasons I stood as Vice President Education. I personally wanted to ensure we have a diverse and engaged team of reps getting involved and feeding into decision making at the OU.

You've got something to say, and something that needs to be heard

Liz Marr - Pro-Vice Chancellor (Students)

Our team is growing bigger and more effective by the day, and we welcome anyone who feels they have something to offer. We particularly want to encourage younger students who are taking their degree at full-time study intensity to apply, as they have a viewpoint on issues that we need to ensure the University is actively considering. We also particularly welcome students who represent any of the protected characteristics, as these students can be instrumental in feeding into the equality work going on currently in Higher Education and ensuring that we consider any and all hurdles to engagement within our roles.

Central Committee Representatives

For those with a reasonable amount of free time to spend volunteering, you could consider becoming a Central Committee Representative. They ensure that we have students effectively engaging at the highest levels, and we have representation opportunities at all stages from our Boards of Studies and Teaching Committees to Research Degrees Committee (see our Committee A-Z for more info). These reps will be instrumental in effecting change and shaping the student journey for all of us. They help enhance the teaching and learning experience of all Open University students and really do make a difference.

Senate Reference Group

We are also looking for applications for our Senate Reference Group, these members tend to be passionate about the student voice shaping discussions and guiding our Student Members of Senate before each Senate meeting. It is a much more collegiate type of volunteering role, since there are about 40 students all feeding into the discussions of the hugely important and sometimes complex issues that will be coming before the Senate. You can read more about Senate in this recent article.

Other ways to get involved

These are reasonably labour-intensive roles and do include scheduled meetings a few times a year (currently done online), so if you have less time than that, here at the OU Students Association we can offer you a range of other options to get involved. Currently we are also looking to get a student onto the OU Students Shop Working Group, and for students to be part of the Conference Steering Committee.

Alternatively, why not sign up for our volunteering newsletter? Be the first to hear about the different opportunities we offer throughout the year as well as volunteer-exclusive news and events.

Why not come join our team? You’ll love it. And don’t worry, all training you will need is offered and supported by the Students Association and the Open University. 

Visit to find out more or contact the Volunteering and Representation Team at oustudents-volunteer[at]

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Ellie Milnes-Smith
Ellie is a former member of the Students Association staff team.


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