Loughborough University
Leicestershire, UK
LE11 3TU
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Loughborough University

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Chief Operating Officer's Annual Report of Loughborough University Students in the Community – 2012/13

10 December 2013

Students and their positive impact in the community

Once again the year has seen a fantastic commitment by students to make improvements to the local community through their Action volunteering programme and fund-raising through Rag.

  • 2430 student volunteers have given up over 20,300 hours of their time to work on approximately 150 local community projects which include environmental projects in local woodlands, working on the Great Central Railway extension, hosting a tea dance, decorating at John Storer House and litter picking.
  • Action Volunteers were awarded a Big Society Award from the Prime Minister, David Cameron.
  • Rag raised over £1million which was donated to 146 local, national and international charities.  Over 3000 students were involved in raising the money for the charities which included LOROS, Breast Cancer Campaign, Meningitis Research Foundation and the Royal British Legion.
  • From the £1million, £10,000 was donated to local causes.
  • Loughborough Students Rag were named Rag of the Year for the second year running.

In May the University was pleased to present the TS Shipman and Hannah Community Prizes to four students to recognise and reward them for taking part in community activities.  The students were honoured for their local volunteering and for simply being ‘good neighbours’.

For the second year running a student from the University’s School of the Arts has been able to showcase their talent by winning a commission for their art to be displayed in Queen’s Park in an exciting project with Charnwood Borough Council.

The year also saw the Student Union re-launch their dedicated section for community students.  As well as promoting SU links with students living in the community, they launched the Know Your Neighbour campaign and organised two excellent events bringing local student residents and permanent residents together which were a great success.

Complaints and Disciplines

Most students are enthusiastic about their studies, the opportunities for sport, cultural and other extra-curricular activities, the University campus and the town of Loughborough.  Their behaviour of the vast majority is excellent.

We also know that there is some poor behaviour and this can be as a result of too much alcohol combined with inexperience and/or inconsideration.  

Progress and achievements during the year

We have continued with the process of providing feedback to complainants.  The response to this has been overwhelmingly positive.

The data sharing agreement with the Police and Charnwood Borough Council was signed towards the end of the year.

Statistics for the Year 2012/13

Total complaints

Major disciplines

Minor disciplines

Community disciplines

712 (+177 on 2011/12)

52 (+20 on 2011/12)

291 (+16 on 22011/12)

76 (+52 on 2011/12)


Points to note

  • Of the major disciplines, 26 were in connection with the pub crawl incident in town which took place in April. There are three disciplines outstanding in connection with this incident.
  • 533 incidents were off campus.
  • 72% of complaints were about noise or anti-social behaviour.

Continued Activity

The Alcohol Free Zone has been introduced to large parts of campus from the start of this academic year. 

The University is currently exploring links with the leading drugs and alcohol charity, Swanswell, for a referral scheme for alcohol awareness courses.  In addition an agreement has been reached in principle with the Street Pastors for a scheme of restorative justice volunteering to be used as part of the student disciplinary process.

The University is committed to continued activity with students, other agencies and local residents to ensure that wherever possible the University and its students have a positive impact and play a full part in our local community. The University will also continue to work to take action to minimise the negative impact the students have on others in the local community and on campus.

Now that data sharing is in place the University, Police and Charnwood Borough Council are  working together to refine and develop partnership working processes.

Notes:

The complaints and Discipline process

There are two formal levels of offence – minor and major. Students found guilty of charges may be fined (both actual and suspended fines) or given community service (normally clearing and cleaning on campus).

Where a student is charged with a major offence they have to attend a disciplinary panel hearing which normally includes a lay member of the University’s Student Discipline Committee.  The charge is presented by the Security Manager on behalf of the Chief Operating Officer. The majority of incidents are admitted by students but even when “pleading guilty” they normally attend the panel to express their regret.

Where there is a police investigation the University does not normally proceed with its investigations until the police have decided whether or not to prosecute. 

Sanctions

The University continues to employ a range of sanctions including fines, and community service or a combination of the two, both of which can be suspended.