Meet the new Students' Guild Executive

Left to right: Andy Harris, Ben Smith, Mega Ibrahim and Prab Bhopal

With a new academic year comes a new Student’s Guild Executive. This year’s Executive Team took office at the start of July and believes it is the “best Executive yet”. The Team is keen to do all it can to improve the student experience here at Aston, so a month on, Aspects caught up with the enthusiastic team to find out a little more about their roles and their hopes for the year ahead.

Mega Ibrahim – Students’ Guild President

Ext 4817 or email guild.president@aston.ac.uk

“I head up the Students’ Guild and am therefore the voice of all students, representing the students on University Council and Senate. I sit on many committees throughout the University so that students are consulted in major decisions and project works around the campus, for example, it’s my responsibility to work with Estates & Capital Developments so that essential building works are carried out outside of crucial points throughout the year for students such as examinations. 

“As an international student, I’m extremely proud to be the very first international Guild President and diversity is going to be high on the agenda for me this year. I really want One World Week to be huge this year and I’ll be looking at attracting more international students to play a more active part within the Students’ Guild to match the engagement of domestic students. This will mean a bigger and better Students’ Guild for all Aston students.

“I am also looking to work with the Careers & Employability Centre and with the Development and Alumni Relations Office to hold regular seminars and workshops in the Guild Hall by asking current students and Aston alumni to share their experiences with our new students.”

Andy Harris – Vice President Student involvement

Ext 4857 or email guild.activities@aston.ac.uk

“I look after all of the sports clubs and societies at the University. In the last couple of years, student involvement hasn’t been as I would like to see it so I’ll be working hard to build up student participation in our clubs and societies and getting students involved. Being at university isn’t just about studying, it provides so many more experiences, and by joining clubs and societies, students get to share interests and experiences with people from other countries and cultures. These are all really life changing opportunities and they’re heaps of fun too!

“When the Woodcock Sports Centre re-opens in September it will be fantastic for the clubs. Last year Aston came 88th in the British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS) league, which I think is fantastic considering we do not offer any sports courses and aren’t seen as a sports university. We had some excellent results last year and I am sure that we can improve. If we reach the top 60 I would be extremely happy!” 

Ben Smith – Vice President Education and Welfare (second year in this position)

Ext 4837 or email guild.welfare@aston.ac.uk

“There are two distinct parts to my position. On the education side of my role, it is my responsibility to feed the views of our students to the University. I want to make positive changes for students’ education and time at Aston, ensuring that they get the best value for money from their university experience. On the welfare side of my role, I’ll be working to raise student awareness of a whole range of campaigns including keeping safe at night and safe sex. I want to make students more aware of the support facilities offered by the Students’ Guild and the University so that they know where to go to get the right help at the right time.

“What’s great about holding this position for the second year in a row is that I’ll be able to fully embed initiatives that I launched last year - such as Student Welfare Week and niteline–and keep these at the forefront of students’ minds. I’ll also be working closely with the newly structured ARC (the Students’ Guild’s Advise and Representation Centre) to increase student satisfaction levels.”

Prabhdeep Bhopal – Vice President Finance, Media and Entertainment

Ext 4840 or emailguild.treasurer@aston.ac.uk

“It’s great to be back again this year and I’m looking forward to getting stuck in to totally fresh challenges and responsibilities. I’ll be working hard this year to push the services and facilities that the Students’ Guild has to offer and to get more students to attend the fantastic range of event we are planning for the year ahead. My role is also to make sure that the Guild remains financially stable and as such, I am the treasurer for lots of student initiatives including RAG. For a large part of this year I will be focusing on attracting students and staff to B4 BAR, getting people socialising there, and making it a really vibrant and welcoming space.  

“I’m really looking forward to Freshers’ Week and much of the summer will be absorbed in the organisation of this. We’ve got a fantastic week planned and I need to make sure that all students have a great but also a safe time.”

Aspects wishes the team every success for the year ahead.

Words by Louise Russell
3 August 2011

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