September 2020

Month Archives

Students’ Union Welcomes NUIG Turnaround on student accommodation payments

News & Events

Students’ Union Welcomes NUIG Turnaround on student accommodation payments

NUI Galway Students’ Union has today welcomed the University’s decision to provide refunds to students who no longer wish to take up spaces in on-campus student accommodation for 2020/21. Many students booked accommodation at the Corrib Village and Goldcrest developments on the basis that they were told by the University they would have on campus teaching hours this semester. The students subsequently discovered they would have no teaching time or very limited hours which didn’t justify their outlay on the accommodation.

NUI Galway Students’ Union took up the campaign on behalf of these students and their families with the University. Campus Living who run the two developments on behalf of the University yesterday evening confirmed that they would be “entitled to a refund if they decide not to proceed with their booking due to having less time on campus than originally planned.”

Students’ Union President Pádraic Toomey said: “We are delighted that the University has listened to the student body and reversed their earlier decision. We are all facing a very uncertain future with the current global pandemic. Adding any extra financial pressures to students and their families is not acceptable. Now is a time to be flexible and compassionate. The national Education For All campaign launched this week highlights the pressing need for a publicly financed student accommodation building strategy and charter for student tenant rights.”

Students’ Union Welfare and Equality Officer Róisín Nic Lochlainn added: “We hope that other student accommodation providers and landlords in Galway will follow the University’s lead and provide refunds to students who no longer need accommodation. Many students and their families had to make tough decisions to book accommodation with incomplete information about how much time they would actually be on campus. Now that the picture is finally becoming clearer our students are finding themselves stuck with accommodation they can’t afford and no jobs available for them to pay the rent.”

SU Weekly Email 1 – 24th September 2020

Weekly Email

Welcome to the first weekly email from your Students’ Union for the new academic year.

 

Free Face Masks

The SU Office might be closed but you can call in to our SU Pop Up in the Quad to pick up your pack of 3 free reusable face masks. The masks have been supplied by NUI Galway and there’s a pack for every NUIG student so don’t panic! We will also have FREE SU Diaries, SU Cards and Flirt FM Wall Planners at the SU Pop Up. Please wear a mask and follow the social distancing signage/instructions. The Pop Up will be open until Fri 9th Oct and our provisional opening hours are here.

 

What is the Students’ Union?

“The mission of the Union shall be to represent its members and promote, defend and vindicate the rights of its members at all levels of society.” – Constitution of the Students’ Union

The SU is a representative organisation that is independent from the University and consists of all registered students at NUI Galway.  As the SU is an independent body, the SU officers do not have to answer to the University authorities – we only answer to you, our members who have elected us.

These are the officers in the Students’ Union working for you this year to promote and defend your rights:

President: Pádraic su.president@nuigalway.ie

Vice-President/Education: Emma  su.education@nuigalway.ie

Vice-President/Welfare & Equality: Róisín  su.welfare@nuigalway.ie

Oifigeach na Gaeilge: Erin su.gaeilge@nuigalway.ie

Mature Students: Michelle  su.maturestudents@nuigalway.ie

Postgraduate Taught: Martin su.pgtaught@nuigalway.ie

Postgraduate Research: Sebastiaan  su.pgresearch@nuigalway.ie

Clubs: Kirsty su.clubs@nuigalway.ie

Convenor Arts, Social Sciences & Celtic Studies: Claire su.arts@nuigalway.ie

Convenor Science and Engineering: Aoife su.scienceengineering@nuigalway.ie

Convenor Medicine, Nursing & Health Sciences: Evan su.medicine@nuigalway.ie

Gender and LGBT+ Rights: Maeve su.lgbt@nuigalway.ie

Disability Rights: Patricia su.disability@nuigalway.ie

 

5 Ways To Get Involved in Your SU this Year

  1. Charity Challenge – Each month we will have a different charity challenge to raise funds for the SU Charities. Contact studentsunion@nuigalway.ie for info
  2. Event Crew – The crew will organise events during term to give students a chance to meet up on or off line. Contact su.president@nuigalway.ie for info
  3. Class Representatives – Each class elects a class rep to be their voice. Contact su.education@nuigalway.ie for info
  4. Welfare Crew – The crew will organise campaigns on student issues such as sexual health, mental health and equality issues. Contact su.welfare@nuigalway.ie for info
  5. Elections – There are currently 5 Vacant Officer positions to be filled. Contact studentsunion@nuigalway.ie for info

 

Student Leap Cards

Our office is still closed so we can’t currently process Student Leap Card applications and we don’t have a reopening date yet. For any queries please contact the Student Leap Card help desk (Monday-Friday 9am-5:30pm) Email: info@studentleapcard.ie Phone: 1890 457 056

 

COVID-19 and NUIG

Galway is currently at level 2 (green). We would love to reach level 1 but to do that we need to stop the spread of Covid-19 by:

  1. Limiting our social contacts to priority contacts.
  2. Practising good hand hygiene. There are hand sanitisation stations all around campus. Wash your hands regularly for 20 seconds.
  3. Wearing a face covering. Free reusable face masks are available from the SU Pop Up at the Quad. There are 3 for every NUIG student.
  4. Keep social distance of 2 metres and please follow the yellow arrows/social distancing markings on campus.
  5. Maintain good cough/sneeze etiquette. Throw used tissues in the bin.
  6. Self-isolate if you feel you have any symptoms of COVID and ring your GP or the Student Health Unit ASAP to arrange a test.
  7. Download the free Covid Tracker App.

 

#EducationForAll

This week the national #EducationForAll campaign was launched calling on politicians to take immediate action on Higher Education Funding. It’s time to end fees. Cut Rents. Support Students. Learn more about the campaign here. Sign the campaign petition here.

 

Walktober – Win Prizes by Walking!

Walktober our annual Walking Challenge that runs from Mon 5th Oct to Sun 1st Nov. It is open to all staff and students at NUI Galway. How to take part:

  1. Get into a team of 3-6 people, including the captain
  2. Sign up online www.activetravellogger.ie
  3. Participants can download an app, buy a pedometer, step counter, or other step tracking device.
  4. During the Challenge: participants are asked to log steps online at www.activetravellogger.ie

Teams will be awarded for their improvement throughout the challenge. There will also be lots of opportunities to win prizes throughout the challenge, including photo competitions, story competitions and weekly prize draws.

 

How is the return to College going for you?

Take our survey HERE so we know what issues you need us to be aware of.

 

Need to get forms stamped?

Here’s a handy update from Student Registry Helpdesk on what they can/can’t stamp for you and how to get in touch to arrange this. Please note they don’t stamp FRS2 (Student Free Fee Declaration) form. This form must be sent to the Fees Office (fees@nuigalway.ie) for completion.

 

Student Health Unit

The FREE Student Health Unit is open but you must book your appointment online prior to attending. More information on their services and how to book your appointment online here.

 

CÉIM  

Our CÉIM academic peer support programme for 1st year students at NUI Galway is being delivered online in 2020/21 due to COVID-19. CÉIM is available to approximately 1,650 1st year students studying: Engineering & Construction Management; Geography; Law (all programmes including BA Law); Political Science & Sociology; Psychology. More info here.

 

Library Open

The Library is back open with limited services and you now need to book your seat online before attending. More info on their services here.

 

Laptop Loan Scheme

Applications are open for the Laptop Loan Scheme until Friday the 2nd of October. You can find more information and apply online here

 

Online Learning Guide

Online Learning at NUI Galway – Getting Started Guide Available here.

 

NUIG Clubs Day and Socs Day are going virtual!

You can meet them all on Tues 29th Sept, Weds 30th Sept and Thurs 1st Oct. You can also use your YourSpace login to sign up to any club/society online any time! More info about CLUBS HERE and about SOCIETIES HERE.

 

Are you a young adult (18-30 years) living with asthma? Participants needed!

Researchers at the School of Psychology, NUI Galway are conducting a study on the use of a smartphone app to support adherence to preventer inhalers. Participation will involve 2 brief online questionnaires and downloading and using an app. To take part or for more info, click here.

 

Graduating soon?

Don’t forget to register for your vote in the Seanad Éireann elections. Register here.

 

Disability Support Service Registration

Students with evidence of a disability, long-term physical or mental health condition, or a specific learning disability should register with the Disability Support Service. Please email disabilityservice@nuigalway.ie

 

Flirt FM is 25!

The NUIG radio station Flirt FM turns 25 this Monday 28th of September and to mark this huge occasion they are holding a 25 hour broadcast! Find out how to get involved and join the party here.

 

Class Representatives

Every class is entitled to a Class Representative to represent their class. If your class does not have a Class Rep your voice will not be heard. If you have any questions on the roles and responsibilities of a Class Rep contact the SU Vice-President/Education Officer Emma at su.education@nuigalway.ie. Further information regarding the role of Class Reps is also available here.

 

Sign Up For Your Free SU Card Today!

Get your free SU Card at the SU Pop Up at the Quad and earn points or free products every time you shop with us. Your SU Card can be used in any Students’ Unions outlet: Sult, Students’ Union Shop and Smokey’s Café. Students’ Union outlets are open longer than other outlets, have the best prices and sell a huge range of products, so you will quickly start to earn benefits. Also, when you spend money in SU outlets, that money stays on campus supporting student jobs and students’ union services. No other campus operator can say that!

 

Sin Needs You!

The Sin newspaper editor is looking for volunteers to help out with the on campus newspaper and website during the year. If you are interested in helping drop him a line to editor.sin@gmail.com

 

Attention Postgrad Research Students

The NUIG Postgraduate Research Society will be holding a virtual AGM TONIGHT Thurs 24th Sept 6pm-7pm with an optional fancy dress competition! If you are not a member of the society, join via YourSpace or email postgrad@socs.nuigalway.ie

 

Contact Us

You can contact the Students’ Union by email to studentsunion@nuigalway.ie with any questions or suggestions you may have.

You can also like or follow us on Facebook Instagram Snapchat (@nuigsu) and Twitter.

Our office is currently closed but we are working remotely to help you.

 

 

NUI Galway Students’ Union to Distribute Reusable Masks to Students

News & Events

NUI Galway Students’ Union to Distribute Reusable Masks to Students

As students return to Galway for the start of the academic year NUI Galway Students’ Union are distributing free masks to students on behalf of NUI Galway. The University has supplied 3 high quality, reusable, washable masks for every student in NUIG which the SU will be giving out over the next three weeks starting with First Year Orientation this week.

The SU has partnered with the University to ensure that all students will have a chance to get their masks which will be available for collection from the Aula Maxima in the Quadrangle building on campus until Friday 9th of October. After that masks will be available from the SU Office for anyone who hasn’t had a chance to collect theirs. The University will also be distributing masks to all NUIG Staff members too.

NUI Galway Students’ Union President Pádraic Toomey said: “We are delighted to partner with the University on this project to ensure that all NUI Galway students are ready for the start of the semester with a supply of reusable masks. We encourage all our students to wear face coverings to help stop the spread of COVID-19 and look after each other. This is just one of the important ways in which we can all join the fight against the spread of Coronavirus.”

The SU Pop Up is located in the Aula at the Quadrangle Building on Campus until Thursday 8th October and will also have free SU Diaries, free SU Loyalty Cards and free Flirt FM Wall Planners for NUIG students.

Provisional Opening Hours are:

  • Mon 5th -Thurs 8th Oct 12pm-3pm

Walktober – Win Prizes for Walking!

News & Events

Walktober – Win Prizes for Walking! 

Registration is now open for our Walktober Campus Walking Challenge for students and staff at NUI Galway – sign up TODAY  and you could win prizes for walking!

Recent research has shown that through working and studying remotely we are sitting for an extra 2 hours and 45 minutes each day! A shocking statistic but the perfect motivation to take up a walking challenge!

Here’s more information:

What is Walktober?

Walktober is the annual Smarter Travel Workplace and Campus Walking Challenge that runs during autumn. It is open to all staff and students at NUI Galway.

How does Walktober 2020 work?

The aim of the challenge is to encourage and support staff and students to walk more, particularly on the commute, and to support and facilitate long term physical activity. While some participants may be working or studying remotely, coordinators may decide to encourage walking as an alternative mode of transport for their journeys throughout the day. Participants are asked to form a team, register online, and use an activity tracker/download a step counting app, and get walking from Monday 5th October to Sunday 1st November 2020.

How to take part:

  1. Get into a team of 3-6 people, including the captain
  2. Sign up online www.activetravellogger.ie
  3. Participants can download an app, buy a pedometer, step counter, or other step tracking device.
  4. During the Challenge: participants are asked to log steps online at www.activetravellogger.ie

Note: During the challenge we use an honesty based system, but spot checks on the accuracy of step entries will be done throughout. Teams who receive an email or phone call to verify their steps are asked to please respond as soon as possible so that delays to the publication of the leader board are avoided.

How to win

Teams will be awarded for their improvement throughout the challenge. There will also be lots of opportunities to win prizes throughout the challenge, including photo competitions, story competitions and weekly prize draws.

Keep in touch

Make sure to tag us on social media while taking part in Walktober.

NUI Galway Students’ Union call on Galway TDs to take meaningful action on student fees

News & Events

NUI Galway Students’ Union call on Galway TDs to take meaningful action on student fees

NUI Galway Students’ Union today joined USI and NUS-USI in the launch of the “Education for All” campaign which is calling for immediate action on Higher Education funding. The organization that represents 374,000 students across the island of Ireland has written an open letter to Minister Simon Harris TD asking him to take action on a number of key areas:

  • An end to the student contribution charge of €3000, the highest in the EU.
  • A move toward publicly funded education at the heart of government policy.
  • A publicly financed student accommodation building strategy and charter for student tenant rights.
  • A reform of student supports across the island that match the cost of being a student in the new decade.
  • An end to precarious working conditions for academic staff.

NUI Galway Students’ Union President Pádraic Toomey said: “We want to see an immediate reduction of €500 on the student contribution charge in Budget 2021. This charge, which is the highest in the EU is a major barrier to students accessing Higher education. Today students are calling on their TDs to sign up to a pledge which would commit them to campaigning on the issues outlined in the letter to Minister Harris. We are urging our local representatives to sign up to this pledge.”

NUI Galway Students’ Union Vice-President/Education Officer Emma Sweeney added: “NUIG Students and their families are suffering greatly with job losses, financial uncertainty and continually increasing rent rates in Galway. We need our TD’s to take action on Higher education and not treat it as an afterthought. Every €1 invested in Higher Education delivers €4 to the wider economy. Galway is a student city and without our students the city will suffer hugely.”

NUI Galway Students’ Union Work to Help Connect Students

News & Events

NUI Galway Students’ Union Work to Help Connect Students

NUI Galway Students’ Union today launched plans to help students connect with each other in what will be an unusual academic year due to Covid-19. Each option allows students to get involved with the work of the Students’ Union during the year whilst also having a chance to make friends on campus and build connections all the time adhering to social distancing. The plans all include online and socially distant offline options which can be adapted to the Government guidelines in place at the time.

The strands of the plan are:

  1. Charity Challenge – Each month students will take part on a different charity challenge to raise funds for the SU Charities.
  2. Event Crew – The crew will organise events during term to give students a chance to meet up on or off line.
  3. Class Representatives – Each class elects a class rep to be their voice.
  4. Welfare Crew – The crew will organise campaigns on student issues such as sexual health, mental health and equality issues.
  5. Elections – There are currently 5 Vacant Officer positions to be filled.

NUI Galway Students’ Union President Pádraic Toomey said: “We are very excited to launch our plans to help our students find friends and a sense of belonging at NUIG this year. This will be a strange year but we know that projects like our Charity Challenge will help students to meet new people, have fun and also raise funds for charity. We are also very excited to elect more members to our SU officer team and our Class Reps this semester. So many students have become more politically active during the pandemic and the SU is the ideal place to channel that energy to bring about real change at NUI Galway”.

SU Vice-President/Welfare and Equality Officer Róisín Nic Lochlainn added: “We want to highlight these ways to get involved in University life to all students and their parents who might be worried that loneliness could set in when more lectures are online this year. Along with the Welfare and Events Crew there are lots of support systems available for students including our own CÉIM peer learning programming. NUIG Sports Clubs, Student Societies and the ALIVE Volunteering programme will also be working to ensure students have as many chances as possible to make connections outside of lectures.”

 

NUI Galway Students’ Union Urges Caution Booking Student Accommodation

News & Events

NUI Galway Students’ Union Urges Caution Booking Student Accommodation

With the first round of CAO Offers being issued next week thousands of students across the country will now find themselves looking for accommodation for the 2020/21 academic year. Housing for students has been an issue in the past and NUI Galway Students’ Union urges students to be cautious before committing to a private residence this year. Before rushing into signing a lease/contract it is extremely important to make sure the property fits the needs of all tenants and to look out for rental scams. There are properties available so don’t panic and make sure you keep a close eye on all the accommodation websites especially www.nuigstudentpad.ie

Here are some handy tips:

  1. Be aware of the following rental scams: Scammer claims to be out of the country so can’t show you the property but requests a deposit. Scammer is living at the property, and shows a number of people around. They get a deposit from several people and then flee with the cash. The transaction appears to have gone smoothly until the renter finds that the keys don’t work and the landlord has disappeared.
  2. Take your time when viewing a property. Ensure all the necessities are there e.g. washing machine, furnishings etc. Check that all gas and electrical appliances are in good working order.
  3. Take photos of the property and make sure to highlight any damages already there e.g. Cigarette burns, carpet stains etc.
  4. If there are any repairs to be made in the property, be sure to get it in writing from the landlord or agency that these problems will be rectified before handing over your deposit.
  5. Avoid paying the deposit in cash and ensure you get a receipt for any moneys exchanged. You are legally entitled to a receipt so make sure to insist on one.
  6. Request a viewing prior to the move in date to ensure that all outstanding issues have been rectified.
  7. Ensure the house is well ventilated and that heating sources are identified prior to signing a contract/lease.
  8. Insist that a building energy rating (BER) certificate is provided prior to signing the contract. This will help you know how cold the house is likely to get and will give you an idea of the cost for heating.
  9. Ensure you are clear on the duration of the tenancy. If you sign a lease and leave early you may be liable to pay outstanding rent even though you are no longer living there.
  10. Make sure it’s clearly outlined in your lease which utility bills you must pay.
  11. Take out contents insurance as the landlord’s policy will not cover your personal possessions.
  12. Make sure to get your free rent book from the Students’ Union.

NUI Galway Students’ Union President Pádraic Toomey said: “Finding accommodation can be extremely stressful and people tend to rush into it. It is paramount that you follow these guidelines to avoid scams and ensure that the house you live in will be sustainable for you and your friends. Never rush into getting accommodation, be cautious and insist on receipts and any repairs where necessary. This will be where you stay for at least nine months so make sure you have all the necessities before making any commitments. Students still seeking accommodation should check www.nuigstudentpad.ie