Following the release earlier this week of the latest government announcement regarding social gatherings, I wanted to update you on what this means for Freshers’ Week, social activity and student activity at Loughborough Students’ Union.
Freshers’ Week & Social Activity
Over the past few weeks and months, we’ve been working on a programme of events and activities throughout September and October which ensures you have an incredible start to your year (regardless of where you are in your Loughborough journey). While Freshers’ is of course about having fun, our number one priority is ensuring you are able to enjoy all of our events in a safe environment.
All our activities and events will be conducted in accordance with the relevant guidance published by the UK Government, with changes made to the operation of all events and venues to comply with social distancing guidance. All of our venues (some old and some new) have been thoughtfully assessed with the latest guidance in mind so you can be sure that we’re doing everything we can to keep you safe during time here with us.
Until we release our full events schedule (more details on this are below), here is a taste of what we have in store:
* A blended timetable of events (both digital and socially distanced) to give you the chance to meet new people, find your communities, and discover more about the Loughborough experience.
* Digital Freshers’ Bazaars where you get to meet fellow students, find the hobbies you love, and experience new things.
* Group events such as bingo, quizzes, Indie Club, and much more…
Student Group Activity
We are dedicated to ensuring that our student groups and Sections can continue to deliver activity to their members. We have a duty of care to our students and a legal obligation to ensure that any events we organise are delivered safely and are COVID-secure. As a result, we are asking all student groups to plan their activities inside the current government guidelines.
We are recommending that, where possible, student activity should be delivered digitally. That said, where face-to-face activity is required and in line with the latest guidance (e.g. for voluntary, educational and training purposes) activity must -
* Ensure social distancing at all times.
* Ensure adequate PPE is worn (e.g. face coverings, visors, gloves)
* Keep attendance in line with or below maximum room capacities
* Provide space for students to wash hands or use hand sanitiser
* Collect Track and Trace information for all attendees.
* Be booked through LSU’s dedicated COVID-19 Event Booking System.
Members of the LSU Executive team who oversee sectional activities will be working with their respective clubs, societies, associations, and student-groups to provide a clear direction on what each section of LSU will be delivering. Updates provided by each Section will include explanations as to why certain activities are able to continue to go ahead in person, in line with the latest government guidance.
Timeline of Updates
As the start of the new year approaches, we know it is more important than ever that you feel confident in the plans we have as an organisation to make your Loughborough experience the best it possibly can be. As part of our effort to keep you informed, we have launched a dedicated Coronavirus Hub on our website: www.lsu.co.uk/coronavirus. Here, you can find detailed information on the events we have planned for Freshers, how we have adapted the Union building, as well as what you can expect from each section in LSU.
Over the next week we will be providing the following updates:
- Monday 14th September: a first glimpse at the events we have lined up for Freshers 2020.
- Wednesday 16th September: the start of a staggered release of section-specific updates on student-group activity.
- Friday 18th September: a detailed release of events taking place during Freshers.
Alongside this, we will also be updating our Coronavirus Hub to ensure you arrive back in Loughborough with the best possible knowledge of what events and activities we are running, together with how we are able to facilitate them in line with government guidance.
As your President, I ask that throughout this period you remain mindful of the fact that the situation both locally and nationally is subject to change, sometimes at a moment’s notice. I must level with you that should new guidance be issued we may need to adapt our approach once more. This may include a transition to a 100% virtual delivery of activities. Whilst it is not something any of us wish for, we must nevertheless manage our own expectations, and ensure we do not adopt a broad-brush approach to how LSU facilitates opportunities. Ultimately, we must do everything we can to ensure your academic journey is our first priority, even if it means readjusting the way we deliver our activities.
We know this isn’t the way you would have wanted to start your year at University. No matter the level of study you’re embarking on, your Students’ Union will have useful, fun and exciting events for you to take part in both in person and online. The Students’ Union team, including your Executive Officers, will be working in partnership with our amazing student leaders and groups to ensure that you have the same opportunities to meet new people and to try new experiences as any year that has gone previously.