CUSU works with a number of organisations to campaign for students on a local and national level. These include:
NUS: National Union of Students
NUS is a confederation of 600 students’ unions, amounting to more than 95% of all higher and further education unions in the UK. NUS currently represents the interests of over 7 million students at national level and supports their individual students’ unions locally. It is regarded as “the national voice of students” within a wide range of circles, from government and educational organisations to businesses and media.
CUSU pays a central subscription to the NUS – which is cheaper than Colleges affiliating individually – as a result, all CUSU members are NUS members. Through this affiliation, we gain:
- NUS cards: the free democracy card, and the paid for Extra Card.
- Able to send five NUS delegates to the Annual Conference of the NUS: consisting of over 1000 students from around the country.
- Provide resources such as training and legal advice to CUSU Sabbaticals and Staff
- The facility to coordinate national student movements.
The Aldwych Group
“The Aldwych Group exists to vocalize the distinct interest of the students they represent, ultimately securing a better student experience and a fairer settlement for the future.”
The Cambridge University Students’ Union is a founding member of the Aldwych Group, the organisation of students’ unions of the Russell Group Universities. The Group meets regularly and works collectively on many vital issues affecting research-led HE institutions in the UK.
CUSU tends to send the President and Education Officer as delegates to Aldwych Group meetings. However they are open to all interested students and CUSU/JCR/MCR Officers. If you would like to come along to meetings, please contact the CUSU President (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The Graduate Union
For graduate students, it may seem unusual that there are two bodies that represent their interests within the university. CUSU and the GU work together on many issues that affect graduate students. CUSU tends to focus on casework and political representation, as these are quite time- and labour-intensive activities, and CUSU is able to use its six sabbatical officers; the Graduate Union has only one sabbatical officer, its President. The Graduate Union has, in recent times, tended to focus more on the social and integrating needs of the Graduate community, exploiting its central location and cafe space. While this relationship is fluid and the focus often shifts, CUSU and the Graduate Union do not provide competing services, and complement each other well. Graduate students can only benefit from this dual representation, and are welcome to contact either union for advice or assistance at any time.