Halls and JCR committee roles usually count towards the "Step Up and Lead" part of the Manchester Leadership Award.
In every halls of residence there is a residence association (RA) or Junior Common Room (JCR). As a student living in halls, you are automatically part of the association. Your RA/JCR is run by a committee of enthusiastic students here to represent and enrich your time in halls.
Committee members are elected by residents in their halls. As a resident you have the chance to stand for election and join your RA/JCR. You will receive plenty of training, learn new skills and help to make your halls a special place to live for you and your neighbours.
Build Communities – Associations help to foster a sense of belonging and identity for students living in halls.
Lead Change – Associations speak up for the students living in halls and represent their views to the Students’ Union and the University.
Create – Associations plan events, trips, campaigns, nights out, sporting events sustainability projects and lots of other activities for their fellow residents and local community.
Make a difference – Your time in halls is what you make of it, you will have the opportunity to make it better for you and your neighbours and will have a real sense of achievement when you do.
Stand out – Gain experience in managing events, projects, finances, communications and leadership whilst developing your CV.
Do something special – this is the perfect opportunity to make living in halls the best year of your life.
Elections run from 9th October – 15th October, to run in the election, you can nominate yourself at manchesterstudentunion.ac.uk/elections between 2nd October and 8th September.
As a new student living in Opal Garden’s, I really appreciated the Welcome Week event, both in halls organised by the Residence Association (RA) and outside of halls, organised by the Student Union. They provided a great ice breaker and showed the potential of events ran within halls. When I heard about the opportunity to run for a position on the hall’s Residence Association, I decided to put myself forward. Though I was apprehensive to begin, on the last day of nominations I took the plunge and nominated myself for the position of President for Opal Garden’s RA.
I won the elections, and took the position of President of the committee, receiving valuable training and working with a team of other students who were elected into the other committee positions. Together we controlled a large budget to put on events throughout the year for the hall, and represented the students within University and Student Union meetings. Throughout the year, I used the budget and worked with my team to run pizza nights, clubs nights, organise a summer ball within the Hilton Hotel attended by over 250 students and brought new equipment and furniture for the hall’s common room.
This opportunity gave me invaluable experience in running and organising events, handling a large budget and enhanced my time within halls overall. Not only did I thoroughly enjoy running the hall’s Residence Association, but I also found it very fulfilling knowing that I was enhancing student experience within halls. Despite enjoying my course and my year in halls in general, my time on the RA definitely was a highlight, and I’d recommend it to anyone.