We caught up with Ryan Notman-Watt, the new elected WSA Campus President to ask him about his new role, his plans for the year and his message to WSA students.

Please introduce yourself and tell us a bit about your background.

My name is Ryan Notman-Watt, I’m a third year Fashion Marketing/Management student. I’m half Brazilian, half English, and was born and spent my childhood in Dubai, UAE.

What does a WSA Campus President do?/What does the role involve?

The new WSA Campus President role has combined the roles of academic president and a social chair (a role that hasn’t previously existed) together. The short and sweet description would be to ensure that the WSA student voice both academically & socially can be represented by an elected student to both SUSU and the University body and ensure that the student experience and quality in WSA is equal to those of all other Southampton students.

What attracted you to the role?

Even since school I have been very active and keen in student representation, as I feel that reflects my confidence and never being too shy to talk and communicate with others. Secondly I also felt that WSA when I started had no real SUSU presence where no one knew who or what to do, or talk to when problems and issues arose. In the past year we’ve seen the results of what more SUSU representation can achieve; I felt that we could achieve even more with more work from not just SUSU, but from WSA students as well.

What qualities do you think you can bring to the role?

I hope I can bring efficiency to the role in the end I’m only as good as the satisfaction of the students and the things that begin with me. The WSA president role is a brand new position, which I guess is lucky for me as there are no shoes to fill, but I have to keep my hopes slightly grounded as I tend to imagine up ‘Project X’ like events and ‘Les Miserable’ like academic change (;

How do you think the WSA Campus President role will affect students at WSA?

I believe that it will allow for the students to get a better balance of both academic and social improvements as well as strengthen the relationship with the main Southampton team and the WSA campus.

What do you think are the main issues which face Winchester students?

I don’t feel like I right now I could say what is a singular issue that all students are facing equally, but I do believe we have to split this question into two parts; 1 is the problems they might face academically, secondly is socially. In the end University is 3 years that students go to do more than just study, they go to have fun & meet new people; however I do believe that there hasn’t been very much provided by the University for WSA students in Winchester; as well as the loss of a club space 2 years ago.

How do you plan to address them?

I feel to deal with social issues will start with a mixture of three plans, planning more smaller events; especially things that are not all alcohol related, combine with Winchester University to be able to put on more bigger events throughout the year such as Christmas Ball, Halloween Extravaganzas etc, and work with local businesses such as Vodka nightclub.

What do you plan to do in post (explain 3 key changes you would like to make)?

Increase access to your course online especially recorded lectures so that students can take opportunities with placements, internships, or not lose out when illnesses or something stops them from attending University

Increase the choice and availability to socials/events so that there is retrospectively equally things going on at WSA then there are at Highfield (hopefully leading to Southampton based students beginning to want to come and experience WSA).

Ensure that the student representation system is more effective, so that issues can be dealt with effectively and efficiently and that all students know that their voice is heard.

How do you think the Students’ Union as a whole could better communicate with WSA students?

At this point I believe there is no defined suggestion I have to say that SUSU can use to communicate with WSA, I feel this will happen naturally once I get more into the role learning more about SUSU and how it works and hopefully it will be reflected in how SUSU then communicates and works with WSA.

If you could give WSA students one message, what would it be?

Please speak up, nothing can be fixed, organised, amended or done if it’s only discussed around the dinner table with friends. I’m here to represent you so stop me in Tesco’s, Uni or town I want to ensure that your University experience is the best it can be.

Is there anything else you would like us to know?

Let’s have another interview at the end of the year and see how my answers change, evolve and see what has been achieved.

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