VP for Education and Placement : Olivia Forde

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Image Credit: DCU

Olivia Forde is running unopposed to be the Students’ Union Vice President for Education and Placement for 2019/2020.

If she is successful, she stated that she will introduce Appreciation Weeks instead of Appreciation Days for students such as those doing courses in nursing and teaching.

“The reason for to have appreciation weeks is to cater for those students who may be off campus on the particular appreciation day, or else stuck in lectures all days on those days,” said Forde.

“A week can spread the appreciation,” she continued.

Having appreciation days became a topic of concern for current DCUSU VP for Education and Placement Craig McHugh, as some nurses could not attend their appreciation day as it clashed with lectures or placement.

Also, a campaign to tackle the issue of student teachers paying mandatory Gaelteacht fees was launched shortly after the first Teacher’s Appreciation Day which nurses voiced their concern about as it was during the time the Irish Nurses and Midwives Association (INMO) started discussing taking industrial action.

“I feel that the students union did a sufficient job once guided by the student nurses. It was brought up by student nurses that they should be used to help guide the campaign,” said Forde.

“I don’t think there is much I would have done differently,” she added.

In relation to the #GaelFees campaign, Forde stated that she “will continue to strive to end, the what seems as, a never-ending battle with the Gaeltacht fees.”

Another one of Forde’s main objectives is to improve “communication between students and lecturers while out on placement as from hearing some students feel a little left in the dark while off campus.”

As someone who was on placement for much of the election, Forde said she has “plans for other students also on placement but also to gear those heading towards a possible future course regarding placement.”

Forde aims to implement interview workshops which would help people be prepared for job opportunities or PME interviews.

“As for other courses, I would love to meet with heads of courses and to see if some sort of work placement can be offered in courses that do not already offer it,” she continued.

Although Forde is running unopposed, which she is “slightly disappointed” about as she said she would have liked the competition, she believes that she is the “best candidate for the job” as she has “been working towards this position” during her time as as class rep and then as Education Faculty Rep.

“I work hard, I know what students want and how to get things done,” she said.

Cáit Caden

Image Credit: DCU