There are several functional areas in student affairs in various aspects of studies and general student wellbeing. The major aim of student institutions is to help them succeed in the various careers in life, for that matter, it has become critical to broadening these functional areas for the betterment of the student experience (Boren, 2019). Whereas several research have discussed many of such functional areas such as the student residence and housing, the discussion of the multicultural affairs, leadership development among various students as well as the international student affairs, this research seek to delve into the discussion of the student unions as a critical functional area that has not received the sufficient amount of attention in relation to the overall student welfare discussions (Rhoads, 2016).
Positions, Responsibilities, and Programs That Fall Under Student Unions
The structure of the student union is quite diverse. It takes a multi-dimensional approach that espouses and takes into considerations the entire union and institutional aspects of management. In other aspects, it is not enough to say that the student unions must and can only be run by the students; however, the union attracts the support of various stakeholders all who play a critical role in the running of the union (Boren, 2019). The best way to have a properly running student union is t create a guiding constitution that leads to the election of the following functional offices and their respective roles.
The student union faculties have divergent measurements that include among other officials the president, the vice-president, the student finance official and academic secretary. Under the leadership of the president, the student body has diverse roles that include overseeing the success of the whole body (Klemencic, 2014). The student union president may supervise his or her affiliation's endeavors on undergraduate movement occasions and arrangements, school approach support from students, spending distribution, monetary management, and acknowledgment of creating issues relating to the subjects, and correspondence between workforce/staff and the student body.
The student union is well represented by the faculty executives who oversee the smooth running of the student affairs as well as creating a strong linkage between the students and the school administration (Rhoads, 2016). The faculty representatives are majorly elected from the students by themselves. The quantity of Faculty Representatives sitting on the student association panel relates to the number of students in a given faculty and this number is surveyed proceeding every race period (Boren, 2019). College understudies may decide in favor of an agent dependent on the workforce they are enrolled in at the season of the race.
Board of Governors and Senate Representatives
The student union, according to the interview that I held with one of the members of the Senate must have effective representation from one of the Senate committee who is in charge of diverse matters in the entire student body. The Senate is called upon to instill discipline and to ensure that the rules and regulations are allowed to the later by the students (Klemencic, 2014). As such some issues are handled effectively between the students, their lecturers as well as the administration. The board of governors, on the other hand, are more of the apex of the students union. In this case, they offer linkage between the students and the external corporate world which helps in reading them to take part in the national and corporate affairs.
Challenges Related To Student Union
The student union has a number of difficult issues, controversies, current news, or legal challenges that relate to its own existence. The students face plenty of difficulties adjusting to new life. In other contexts, it has emerged that the students are faced with the high cost of living and running the union owing to the fact that these are just student without any proper earning as such are unable to finance the union effectively (Boren, 2019). Time management is yet a very difficult area in the student union especially for the students who are part of the official groups who have to double up between attending classes and running the union affairs as well.
According to the interview carried out on the senior senate member, the student union has been accused of fanning unrest among the large student fraternity. Most strikes in the African universities are attributed to the push by the student unions that are also responsible for the leadership of the students to the acquisition of the success of the entire student unions (Klemencic, 2014). However, opinion from the students who responded to the number of questions asked concerning their view pertaining to the running of the student unions, most of them agreed that the social media has been one of the modern forces that influence the running and the operation of the student unions. This has, by far made it possible for the students to meet and agree on the common matters which have in some cases made it impossible to control the student activities (Rhoads, 2016).
The most common legal issue that continues to confront the student union is compulsory membership. Most universities, especially in Australia, have gone ahead to initiate legal proceedings that will help in making the student unionism to be voluntary other than compulsory. The compulsory contributions to the student unions by all students have also become a real matter of legal tussle (Rhoads, 2016). The contributions have been proposed to be made only for the student who benefit directly from the student's union.
Highlights from an Interview with a Practitioner
The research interviewed the student leader from the University of Kansas, as well as the senior member of the Senate. The findings were appalling on many fronts, particularly with the highlight of the legal matters confronting the student union affairs. The interviewees held the opinion that the union must be made compulsory to all students owing to the fact that all student owes to benefit from the union operations regardless of whether they contributed or not. The benefits of the student union, according to the student leader were non-exclusionary and as such incorporated the benefit from all the users (Klemencic, 2014). The interview determined that among the student body, there has been difficulty in controlling them and managing owing to the rising influence of the social media among the students. The current student body is able to communicate and connect with one another across borders thus the need to ensure that the society accepts and adopts whatever is seen as leading issues in the student desires.
Leadership Theory in the Student Union
Leadership is a critical student development theory. It is therefore utterly true that the students stand to develop their leadership skills, especially the transformational leadership. The student union provides the various leaders to exercise their prowess in managing and controlling the union in a way that it stands the turbulent factors in management that may actually reduce its effectiveness in the operation (Klemencic, 2014). Through the students union, one is able to practice corporate social responsibility that means the betterment of the leadership skills. the student leadership does not believe in the laissez-faire leadership style; therefore, it must occur to everyone that the society in its entirety must believe in the chances that students and their leaders get from the union.
Professional organization related to Student Union
Student union and the entire leadership are known to be closely linked to the national politics of the respective country. It is enough to say that most organizations rely on the student leaders who have radiated from the various universities to take up political positions in the various places in the civil society. The sufficiency by which the society and the various communities are interconnected in creating a lasting and continuous program in the development and the creation of a global leadership political unit is greatly founded (Boren, 2019). It is also enough to say that the social aspects of life call upon every person to live according to their ability to lead. There are a number of leaders in political and the corporate filed that have been given the enhancement due to their stunt in leadership in the student union.
Boren, M. E. (2019). Student resistance: A history of the unruly subject. Routledge.Klemencic, M. (2014). Student power from a global perspective and contemporary trends in student organizing. Studies in Higher Education, 39(3), 396-411.
Rhoads, R. A. (2016). Student activism, diversity, and the struggle for a just society. Journal of Diversity in Higher Education, 9(3), 189.
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