Welfare: Shane Parsons on CRC, mental health & cross-campus engagement

Shane Parsons is a final year St. Pat’s student. Parson believes he has all the characteristics for the job, being approachable, hardworking and dedicated.

I think I can get involved and get engaged with the students on campus,” Parsons said, “I know it’s a big role with the amalgamation. It’s daunting but I think I’m the person there to make it a little less daunting”.

Parsons manifesto discusses the setup of an accommodation app, “Accommodation Clarification”, mental health awareness days, consent workshops and free STI tests throughout the college year.

Parsons hasn’t been involved in the class rep system in St. Pat’s. He said that he has friends involved in it and is aware that it’s more relaxed in St. Pat’s than DCU.

When The College View asked him his thoughts on CRC and how it will work after the merger he said, “It’s going to be hard for them but I think there’s a lot of strong minded people on the class rep council and I think they’re going to be able to cope with it all”.

On engaging with students on campuses the Welfare Officer will not be based on, Shane thinks the best thing to do is to throw himself out there and talk to students face to face. “

When you’re talking to someone face to face, you get to know who they are, you get to know their personality, you get to know what they’re about”, he said, “I think that’ll engage students more”.

Parsons want to tackle the promotion of mental health awareness. His manifesto mentions running mental health days. “We only have one mental health week, throughout the whole two semesters. So why can’t we have a few days throughout the semesters and then have a week,” he said.

Parsons thinks that he is a strong minded person and that will help him look after his own mental health throughout the year. He told The College View that his sister is a counsellor and that if he got a student to the door with a massive issue that affected him that “deep down I could cope with it and I think I could go about it the right way into solving that problem”.

With an upcoming referendum for DCU to stay in the Union of Students Ireland over the next couple of years, The College View asked Parsons how he feels about the USI. “We weren’t involved in the USI down in St. Pat’s,” Parsons said, “I support it, I think it’s great. Just get it out there, just get it out there, promote it, promote the USI. I’m all behind it anyway”.

When asked how the role of welfare could be improved, Parsons thinks that he will have to better himself because he thinks it will be hard to compete with the current Welfare Officers in DCU and St. Pat’s.  

“There obviously are some improvements there but not much. The lads did brilliantly. I’m just going to have to work from the past and keep working on it,” Parsons said.
Hayley Halpin

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