This month has been quite unique for the Student Union at Staffordshire University as they held their very first Big Union Getaway!
The Big Union Getaway is a FREE two-night residential course at the beautiful Whitmoor Lake centre which is situated at the heart of Staffordshire. The course has been designed for students to improve their leadership skills while taking part in exciting outdoor events such as Zip Wires, High Rope Courses, Climbing, Archery and Canoeing.
As this was a first for the Union, these past two days have been fantastic. The course itself has been designed for students to gain a deeper understanding of what the Student Union is all about, while having the opportunity to meet with students from across a large variety of courses at the university. The course has also been designed to educate and train you into becoming a leader.
I was lucky enough to have attended both days and I can honestly tell you that it has truly made me appreciate how wonderful our Student Union is. Our first day was spent getting to know one another through icebreakers, which surprisingly went a lot better than expected. The turnout had been astounding and I was lucky enough to meet a number of students who I connected with almost immediately. The rest of the day itself was spent by engaging with the SU team via presentations and practical team bonding exercises, once we were allocated in small teams. The presentations themselves varied from a large variety of different subjects from ‘Writing CV’s Professionally’ to even ‘What Makes a Good Leader?’ These presentations themselves were thought provoking as it made you realise that these aren’t just skills to guide you throughout university, these were life skills that would benefit you as a human being for the rest of your life.
The second day was what we were all waiting in anticipation for. It was time for the competitive outdoor activities, and I was more than prepared. I am known to be quite competitive, and working with a team that also shared that passion, we wanted to make sure that we satisfied our competitive streak. For many of the students that attended the getaway, it was their first time taking part in the exhilarating outdoor activities but I could tell that even the nervous students turned into adrenaline junkies after taking their first leap of faith off the high rope. I must admit, I did get carried away when it came to the zip line (Not my fault that I wanted to be upside down…while zip lining…while pretending to be Spider-Man.)
The best thing about this Big Union Getaway was that, due to its success, it will be returning next year. This means that for any of you that may have missed out this year, keep your eyes peeled for 2018!
Finally without sounding too clichéd, when it came to the end of our final day at the resort, we all realised how true that old saying, ‘time flies when you’re having fun’ truly is. We were all annoyed that our time at the resort had come to an end. These past two days were more than just attending presentations and zip lining, this whole getaway was to unite us as one entity. On reflection, it made me realise how proud I was to be a student at Staffordshire University. I was proud of the Student Union for actually caring about the students. I was #ProudToBeStaffs.