DCUSU’s new constitution and what it means for students

Tadgh McNally

Image Credit: Clipart Library

DCU Students’ Union (DCUSU) is set to adopt a new constitution from next year, but what does this mean for the DCU student population?

The one major difference that will be seen by students on a regular basis, is that the DCUSU sabbatical executive is changing. There are four new positions being created, with the previous four roles being retired.

These new positions are the VP for Academic Life, VP for Wellbeing, VP for Diversity and Inclusion and VP for Community and Citizenship. The role of President will remain unchanged however. 

VP for Academic Life will be the main representative for academic affairs within DCUSU. They will work on issues such as work-based learning, placement and the Erasmus programme. 

They have a mandate to campaign on all educational matters and can interact with external agencies to develop DCUSU policy.

Alongside this, they will also be responsible for developing the class rep system, while working with faculty and class reps.

The VP for Wellbeing will be responsible for promoting the physical, mental and sexual health of DCU students. As part of their role, they will work on awareness campaigns in partnership with both DCU and outside agencies.

With this role, they will represent students at meetings and promote an ethos of positive health, according to the new constitution.

The VP for Diversity and Inclusion will work on representing all non-traditional students, including access, mature and international students. They will also work on campaigning for certain student groups, like LGBT+, human rights and disabled groups.

The constitution states, “A particular focus of their work would be placed on ensuring the Union caters for all disadvantaged and/or marginalised students.”

The VP for Community and Citizenship will be DCUSU’s main representative for all co-curricular and extracurricular activities. They are responsible for all matters regarding students as residents of DCU and the local area. This includes areas like housing, transport, sustainability and the environment. 

Another important duty that comes with the role is to encourage students to engage more with DCUSU activity. This would include protests, executive elections and referenda. 

The reelection of sabbatical officers has also seen a change. With the new constitution, officers cannot serve more than two years in the same role, and cannot be a voting member of the executive for more than three years. 

This changes from the previous constitution, where a student could not be a sabbatical officer for more than two years.

Tadgh McNally

Image Credit: Clipart