Make A Change

Make A Change is a powerful tool which enables you to submit ideas to the Student Council to be voted and acted upon. If other students vote in favour of your suggestion, the SU will work towards implementing it! Your voice can and will make a change.
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Have your say and make a change

How Make A Change works for you

The Make A Change platform enables any student to submit an idea or campaign through the website without waiting for a rep meeting or Union General Meeting (UGM).

The proposal must:

  1. Have at least 25 likes, and 25 more likes than dislikes within 6 weeks of posting in order to be added to the SU Student Council agenda, otherwise it will be rejected.
  2. The SU Student Council will then decide the future course of action for the proposal based on their powers and remit. The SU Student Council can vote to:
    • Allocate the task to one or more council members to take responsibility for it
    • Reject the idea
    • Request more information or more evidence of support
  3. If the issue is considered a liberation Issue by the Elections & Democracy Committee, it should instead pass to the Liberation Committee to be voted on.

For more information please contact studentvoiceteam@thesu.org.uk.


Update

The below suggestions were all submitted in academic year 2020/21. Some relate to ongoing actions but others will be archived as new ideas are suggested. If you want to find out more about the Student Council click here
 

Make A Change

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  • 477 score
    479 voters

    Refund/Reduction of Rent Payments

    Current
      We would like to see the University and Accommodations reduce fees and refund fees for the time which people aren't residing in their University Accommodation given current government guidelines.
    Liam Beck
    11:22am on 5 Jan 21 This is not the experience we were promised back in September. Students feel isolated and unable to focus on online work due to a range of factors (including construction work). Students are also expected to pay rent for facilities that they’re not using because of the national lockdown.
    Sara Andrade Dos Santos Lopes
    11:35am on 5 Jan 21 I also think it’s important to not ignore accommodations such as Crm, as it is an accommodation that Falmouth and Exeter recommend in their own accommodation applicant services, therefore it’s also their obligation to include these students that live under Crm accommodation to be included if this gets put forward by the SU student council
    James Altham
    11:35am on 5 Jan 21 A complete refund of rent payments would be too extreme as there has been ample opportunity for students to be in their accommodation. However, due to the reduced time everyone is spending in their accommodation, the running costs are lower for FXU and therefore students should have to pay less rather than FXU having higher margins while we are all paying for something we cannot use. Similarly, those who have been adversely affected by the construction in Glasney View should really - for continuity's sake at least - have reduced rent seeing as those staying at The Quarry have had reduced rent due to the site having construction.
    Amelia Buckley
    11:45am on 5 Jan 21 Personally, I am financially independent, I rely solely on my student loans and my work to fund my life. I am a carer at home and I am still left with £50 a week to live on. I am disgusted there has been no attempts to relieve this stress of students. Upon being back home I now have to pay rent here, as I am using the facilities. You want me to continue paying £155 a week for a room and facilities I’m not using... and you want me to stay home so I don’t risk the lives of others, and you want me to produce the same quality of work with this financial burden. I’m happy to pay the money when the room is in use, however I’m not using it. Have some compassion and treat your students like humans, I’m sure you can survive as an institution without stripping us further of our money.
    Sophie James
    11:51am on 5 Jan 21 The university lured us into accommodation with the promise of “blended learning”, but I haven’t had a single in person lesson (for modules i am assessed for) since term began. I completely understand that this is for the safety of personnel, but don’t promise me blended learning to get me to sign up for student accommodation, only for the content to be delivered entirely online !! To make matters worse you’re now telling me I cannot / should not return to the accommodation until mid February EARLIEST. I am a student at the Sidings. They have emailed us saying we must pay our January rent ASAP and that if we do not, there will be consequences. This does not surprise me, as CRM has taken every opportunity possible this year to make money off of us. This does not make the behaviour any less disgusting. If we don’t get refunded our rent for the time we are not allowed back in halls, and if sidings students specifically then get left out of a refund, I will lose all faith in this University.
    Claudia Greiner
    11:56am on 5 Jan 21 I feel it isn't fair to be paying for accommodation that we're not living in. I can't even visit mine to grab my resources to do my online work as I didn't bring any stuff work related with me home as I figured I'd only be home for Christmas. I have a small box room at home, a guest room and I have no desk or anywhere to do online work so I'm going to struggle. This is not what I had in mind when signing up to study Acting at university. I also still have to fund myself at home, with rent, food etc. And the only job I have would be student ambassador but that doesn't start til February so really the money I paid towards my accommodation could've helped me so much more significantly right now to live. Students struggle enough as it is and this is just added stress. A refund would help me out massively
    Serena Burgis
    12:15pm on 5 Jan 21 I believe that attitudes towards students accommodation and learning has been really poor, I understand that all efforts have been made to keep students safe however I think it is unjustifiable to still demand rent and full fees for a course that is essentially nothing like what I was promised back in September. I have not had one single lecture face to face, despite the blended learning experience. I feel as though the uni has favoured certain courses over others with little consideration as to how this will effect its students overall performance. I think the absolute bare minimum they could do is offer some of our money back as we are not only not having the experience we signed up for but because we are being forced out of our accommodation also. Surely the basic fees for running the accommodation is lower as no one is even in them? Awful behaviour.
    James Barltrop
    12:21pm on 5 Jan 21 Nobody should be forced to pay full rent for a room they’re not even allowed to use, or are trapped in if they were unable to leave before the lockdown came into effect. These circumstances have been hard enough on students already, emotionally and financially, without having to pay for a service we don’t even get to use
    Daniel Daley
    12:33pm on 5 Jan 21 I've only had to go onto campus twice since the course started in September, and I cant see much changing for the rest of this academic year, so I could have just done this year from home and saved a lot of money on accommodation, but now I'm stuck at home (fortunately with all my stuff) and still having to pay for an empty room. A refund for the time we cant use it would be a step in the right direction, or let me end the tenancy agreement and finish this year off from home, as its essentially a glorified online course. If I'm expected to flexible in how I receive this course, I think it's only fair the university offers some flexibility too.
    Megan Cunningham
    12:38pm on 5 Jan 21 I am having to pay a lot of money for a room I have hardly used in the last 5 months. I am now having to work from home in a small room with no desk, which is now going to be a struggle. As we have been asked to be flexible with our learning, which I believe we have been doing very well. We deserve some money back. The university should apricate this under the circumstances and also try there best to be flexible. It isn't easy paying all this money for a room I am not using and having almost nothing left for food (etc) It is only fair every student should see some of there money come back to them, it would be a massive help to all of us.
    Nicola Oakins
    12:57pm on 5 Jan 21 I feel no one should be forced to pay rent that they haven’t been able to use for the required time. I’ve had to pay considerably a lot of money for somewhere I’m no longer being able to stay. For this reason alone I feel we should deserve a portion of our money back. The university should appreciate the fact we are struggling with this current situation and the circumstances we have had to deal with recently. I feel receiving some money would be a massive help to all of us.
    Louise Masterson
    1:12pm on 5 Jan 21 No one should have to pay is we ain’t living there. It’s not fair we as students struggle we money anyway so making us at pay for where we ain’t living ain’t right.
    Jessica Yates
    1:21pm on 5 Jan 21 I don’t understand how we’re expected to pay rent for accommodation we aren’t allowed to be in? Surely if you put this in a ‘real world’ scenario the outcome would be different...if you are unlawfully evicted, or there’s a reason preventing you from entering the accommodation you’re paying for...you’re not expected to pay the following months rent...for the simple reason being that you’re not able to use the service promised to you. Just as if you went on holiday and the hotel turned around and said you can’t stay the full length if the holiday, you would get a partial refund. I understand that this pandemic has created chaos for those on both sides of the argument and that everyone is struggling both professionally and personally but we are also struggling. Our education has been interrupted constantly since the pandemic began. Many of us have no jobs or have lost our jobs due to the pandemic and are being expected to pay for accommodation and facilities we can’t access. The government have instructed us to stay at home and learn online until February half term...we shouldn’t have to pay for a place we have no access to and have been categorically told not to return to.
    Henry McCabe
    1:27pm on 5 Jan 21 A reduction in rent fees is entirely justifiable, these aren't holiday homes and they shouldn't be treated as such by the uni, the majority of people who have either stayed at home or in their flat didn't choose to do so during the holidays and into the start of term two. We are already at a level of unpayable debt from full course prices for what is effectively half a course due to the poorly handled blended learning approach and many of us can't support ourselves with part-time work due to time constraints with studying and a lack of jobs at the moment because of the pandemic. We're only just starting our adult lives, we don't deserve to be put at such a disadvantage. We should be entitled to more support; especially now more than ever during a new national lockdown.
    Samson Croucher
    2:01pm on 5 Jan 21 To demand rent from students who are not allowed into their accommodation is ridiculous. Many of us have left important equipment which is required for our learning and are unable to retrieve them. We are essentially paying for a fancy storage locker with no keys at this point. Not acceptable or moral. I hope the university make steps to rectify this.
    Julie Minichova
    2:16pm on 5 Jan 21 I can hardly say anything new since I feel like everything has been already said. I share the same struggle as many others and as an international student, this situation is financially even worse and stressful because I couldn't apply for that one loan that is only available for citizens of the UK. I planned to find a job in the UK which would cover the accommodation fees, yet I am still dependent on my parents and that is not how it should have been by this time. I honestly think this whole system is one big cash-grab and the amount we pay for accommodation in a WEEK is just laughable. Having the fees reduced is an obvious choice at this point.
    Ben Andrews
    3:04pm on 5 Jan 21 Our landlords are amazing so we don't want them to not get the money to pay their bills. We would want the university to help subsidise all or a percentage of the fee using money that would be spent on facilities which aren't currently open.
    Oana Pascari
    3:13pm on 5 Jan 21 It is totally unfair to pay 9k+ for university expecting it to use facilities and to not be able to! Youtube is literally free. Would be a good idea to have some payback for the months with closed facilities cause after all, for what I pay 9k?
    Lauryn Howard
    3:23pm on 5 Jan 21 Those of us who have listened to government guidance have remained at home, obviously discounting those who stayed. it’s unfair for those of us who have listened to the rules to have to pay full amount of rent still as it’s not our choice not to come back! Specifically crm as they were endorsed by the uni therefore it’s the unis responsibility to ensure that the system is fair!
    Oliver Saunders
    4:21pm on 5 Jan 21 This experience is completely disappointing and nothing like the experience we were promised, the government minster for education said in his address to us that online doesn’t have to mean inferior learning. Well I would very much like him to look and listen to any students experience from this year which will tell him the complete opposite. As for the accommodation there is no way we should be made to pay for something which we have been told we are unable to use. If we are forced to pay for accommodation, then the uni should allow us to all return to campus. Solidarity To All Students
    Caitlin Pinkess
    4:38pm on 5 Jan 21 This is not the Uni experience we have been promised and I think it would be extremely unfair for students to have to pay full fees for accomodation that we can’t stay in.
    Joshua Etheridge
    5pm on 5 Jan 21 At Maritime, we haven't been able to access any of the facilities promised properly (and if so for a very short period of time). This is unjust and unfair. Hello Student seems to just be taking the money and not caring that the students can't use the accommodation properly and the facilities promised.
    Emily O'Brien
    6:08pm on 5 Jan 21 I think it is extremely unfair to have to pay for accommodation that we aren’t allowed to stay in. We’re basically paying thousands for storage.
    Josh Martin
    6:48pm on 5 Jan 21 It's honestly pathetic that we should even need to put time and effort into protesting this, it seems like something that should have been done without waiting for the predictable wave of complaints that was obviously coming. It would've been helped if the government had decided to even pretend to care about the welbeing of uni students, but even without any input from them, other universities around the country have been offering rent reductions for January/Febuary, so there's no reason Falmouth can't do the same. CRM/The Sidings trying to extort as much money as possible from students is simply completely unacceptable.
    Emma Bull
    8:55pm on 5 Jan 21 The whole situation is disgusting. Even when things were “blended” we didn’t have one proper in class lectures with our teachers. Again cross over of information even worse when it’s translated online left completely clueless about what is actually being asked of you. No replies for weeks on end from certain individuals. Deadlines left unchanged with little or no leeway, a dissertation completed with someone who had no idea on my topic or no clue what to do just left me to my own devices. No timetable no knowledge always left in the dark. Shambles.
    Hannah Oakman
    9:33pm on 5 Jan 21 I totally agree, as someone whose meant to be staying at the quarry i was honestly shocked to receive an email from them a few days ago saying that we're still liable to pay the entirety of our rent, especially as my sister who is meant to be in Newcastle got a complete refund for her rent pretty much at the same time i payed this semester's rent, even though I'm on the other side of the country
    Mickaela Payne
    8:33am on 6 Jan 21 Making somebody pay for a service when you are not using it is wrong. It is unfair and putting more stress on us. We are already under a huge financial burden from paying back our student loans again for services we are not receiving. I think a partial repayment should be at least offered.
    Benedict Clingan
    9:36am on 6 Jan 21 To be informed less than 24 hours before I was due to return to campus that I was to stay away, to then enter lockdown and still be expected to pay rent for accommodation that is not available is never ok. The first study block this year has been a disaster for most courses, and so far the University has yet to offer any kind of reassurances regarding concerns for our degrees, which will affect our professional careers. Allowing students not in their accommodation for this lockdown to not pay rent for those weeks would be an important first step to showing us that the University actually cares about us as students, and not as another paycheck.
    Astrid Baker
    10:57am on 6 Jan 21 At the moment we aren’t paying reduced rates based on the argument that our experience in the accommodation has not being significantly impacted. Covid, meaning some of us have spent more time at home than uni since September and sent some international students home as early November, has significantly impacted our experience. Construction, which has blocked people’s windows off as they’ve been self isolating inside, has significantly impacted our experience. Not having heating or working fridges or leaking showers or moldy carpets or a rat has significantly impacted our experience. We haven’t even been able to interact with people outside our bubbles, our lack of social interaction has significantly impacted our experience. On the grounds of significantly impacting our experience therefore, it’s outrageous that we’re paying so much money, especially this term, for our accommodation.
    Juan Jaimes Camargo
    12:45pm on 6 Jan 21 Paying for accomodation, and a caterng service that i have no access too should be a blatant refund. Regardless of the University's agenda, if i am not using the product i payed for, regardless of what circumstances have arised, then i should be refunded atleast in part. University fees not being completely refunded makes sense since we are still using University services, but a discounted price would make much more sense.
    Hayley Davies
    1:05pm on 6 Jan 21 Student accommodation should be seen as more akin to a hotel than a home, that is even stated in the terms and conditions for the Glasney View at least "enter your Room at any time and for any reason (which is similar to staying in a hotel);". If you had booked a hotel and the country went into lockdown, you would expect a refund for a service you could not access. This isn't something we should even have to fight for. If I'd chosen to stay at home during this period, then sure, charge me. But I legally cannot head back to Glasney without breaking lockdown. We should be reimbursed for at least the time spent not there due to lockdown.
    Aidan Jeavons
    1:16pm on 6 Jan 21 Student accommodations are expensive. This is a universal fact. Paying full fees for services that we are unable to use by government law for impoverished students, some of whom rely on their parents who have recently gone out of work is unethical and wrong. I appreciate that the fees should not be completely waived as maintenance and service costs are an undeniable expense, however, with students not living in the accommodations, university costs are significantly lowered. Therefore, the university is in fact profiting from the misery of others - this is wrong, and should be addressed. With recent treatment of university students we are also not looking for some insubstantial and face-value apology and reduction in costs, but rather something significant, something universally applicable, as everyone is affected. Propositions of reductions in costs by half 1/2 as raised by fellow students should be seriously considered, and acted upon, and if not at least something similar in terms of symbolic and financial weight. This is difficult for everybody, university staff included, please do not allow the pandemic to create more victims, and ruin more lives. Thank you.
    Shannon Barnett
    2:54pm on 6 Jan 21 Considering most students have not been in their term time accommodation since at least December 9th (i myself left in November) and now are not permitted to go back for at least half the term (feb 16th for example) and yet full fees are still being taken is not only outrageous but both exploitation and extortion as emails were sent to all CRM occupants expressing that we had to pay ASAP or action would be taken upon us. This was done not only to scare young students into giving money to a company that has been exploiting students since they arrived on campus (having to pay £200 for WiFi that is less than 1/5 of the speed Glasney students get for free, and is also highly unreliable) but to also to get student to pay before a university wide decision is made so that they can say "you have paid we will not pay you back" This decision needs to be made fast and be expressed and pushed upon ALL student accommodation.
    Chloe Penrose
    8:45pm on 6 Jan 21 It is extremely disappointing to find that our accommodation currently has no expectation of even decreasing the rent we have to pay when we are not legally allowed to return to it. Renting student accommodation (CRM) has been a pain on more than one occasion - particularly in regards to internet connection which is terribly shocking and, quite frankly, unacceptable in such expensive accommodation with the expectation of us being able to complete our university work.
    Tega Amrore
    2:04am on 7 Jan 21 Catered accommodation should be reduced anyway as we're paying almost £2k more than everyone else for 2 meals a day excluding weekends and holidays. There is also isn't a lot of support for people with allergies or who follow a healthier lifestyle. On top of that, we now aren't getting cooked meals anymore and are only having a budget to use in the campus shop, where if we don't use the full amount or buy anything on any of the days, the surplus is void. I propose that we're refunded the £500 extra that we've paid for this term.
    Helena Crate
    10:46am on 7 Jan 21 It would only be fair to refund rent for this term as we have been unable to travel back due to the restrictions and then imposed lockdown. We should have been back on the 4th January however, we were told to hang back and wait in our current place of residence as the government had announced only certain students could go back to university. Then a week later the UK government announced a full lockdown meaning there is no way any Falmouth students will be able to return until at least mid February although its likely it will be longer. I propose those of us in student accommodation receive a full refund for this term.
    Hayley Davies
    12:30pm on 7 Jan 21 Success (somewhat). I've just received word that Exeter students' rent will be waived for the period of lockdown (starting Jan 4th until the arrival back at FXPlus/University accommodation). This is great news and I'm hoping that Falmouth students will also receive an email shortly saying the same!
    Amelia Banton
    5:15pm on 7 Jan 21 The SU has now successfully negotiated rent refunds during the lockdown for all students in University owned or managed accommodation. Thank you so much to every student who engaged with our campaign. Our attention is now solely on private accommodation.
    Megan Wellman
    6:27pm on 7 Jan 21 I think accommodation fees should not only not be paid for the 7 weeks by students who are under uni accommodation but private accommodation as well, as it is unfair for those in private accommodation as it doesn’t mean we don’t struggle as well. I think it needs to be fair for every student. I think it’s fair to still pay rent if we are living at our accommodation and when we return in February if we are allowed to but for those who aren’t allowed to travel due to government lockdown, I think we shouldn’t also have some support towards our rent or make it fair for all students so they don’t have to pay for their rent for the 7 weeks we aren’t in our accommodation
    Gwen Scolding
    10:20am on 11 Feb 21 The Presidents are still working on this campaign. You can follow what they've been doing here: https://www.thesu.org.uk/voice/campaigns/rent/

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