Behind the scenes: Bristol Students’ Union

As we gear up for the beginning of the postgraduate term, we’ve been chatting to Leah Martindale, your Postgraduate Education Officer in the Bristol Student’s Union.

What is your role in Bristol Student’s Union (SU)?

I’m Leah, the Postgraduate Education Officer at your Students’ Union! I work in the SU to ensure fair representation for postgraduates at all levels within the SU and the University, from the structural to the social. I raise postgraduate concerns and work full-time to ensure all postgraduate’s voices are heard throughout the University, in all areas surrounding postgraduate life and the student experience. I am also a Trustee of the SU, and sit in lots of different spaces ensuing that postgraduate’s needs, wants, and rights are raised and responded to. I have been democratically elected to represent you for this academic year, and am contactable if you should ever have an issue to raise!


What does Bristol SU do for postgraduates?

Bristol SU offers democratic representation at all levels of your student experience. Our course and faculty representatives stand for your needs specifically, and work with academic staff and SU staff to ensure your academic issues are being brought to the table. Our networks represent specific groups, running social and educational events, engaging with the University, and championing the voices they represent. Our hundreds of sports clubs and societies enrich your student experience with social events, volunteering and activities, and growing a social network that will support you throughout your university journey. I am one of seven elected Officers (David: Undergraduate Officer, Ruth: Student Living Officer, Roy: International Students Officer, Jason: Equality Liberation & Access Officer, Julio: Union Affairs Officer, and Rushab: Sports & Student Development Officer) and we work with the staff of the SU on issues surrounding the entirety of the student experience. Bristol SU are here to give you the best student life!


What goes on in the SU in the lead up to the beginning of term?

The lead up to the start of term is always a hectic time, but more than ever this year! In a normal year we would be preparing our current representatives, training them up and getting them excited for the year, coordinating our societies to prepare for the years to come, meeting with the University about the matters arising in the coming year, and preparing for the Welcome Fair in September. This year we are doing all of this and more, while assuring that all of these activities are as engaging, exciting, and educational in a blended learning environment! Us officers are in discussions with the University about digital education, social life in the age of COVID-19, re-entering the ‘new normal’, and more. Don’t worry though, we are still working on our manifesto points, shaping our ideas and keeping the important conversations going!


If you’re joining us this year, we hope you are excited for the beginning of term!  Find out more about your Bristol Students Union online.


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