Making connections: my role as a welfare officer


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Making connections: my role as a welfare officer

  1. 1. `<br />Making Connections:<br />My role as a <br />University Welfare Officer<br />Julia Coats<br />Welfare Officer (International)<br /><br />
  2. 2. Job title: Welfare Officer (International)<br />What does that actually mean?<br /><ul><li>Primary role as a Welfare Officer but I specialise in areas relating to International Students</li></ul>I work within the Student Welfare Service which falls under the UoL Student Support and Development Service (SSDS)<br />SSDS is one of 7 divisions within the University of Leicester’s Corporate Services<br />
  3. 3. Welfare Officer (International) : Where does my role fit in the University structure? <br />UoL Corporate Services<br />Academic and Research Services<br />Estates Office<br />IT Services<br />Finance and Business Development<br />Human Resources<br />Marketing and Communications <br />Student Support and Development Service (SSDS)<br />Student Development<br />AccessAbility Centre<br />Health and Wellbeing Services <br />STUDENT WELFARE SERVICE<br />
  4. 4. Student Welfare Service (SWS)<br /> The Student Welfare Service provides these services for all students:<br />Practical and personal support<br />Response to emergency situations<br />Financial advice and information<br />Pastoral care for students living in University accommodation<br />Community Liaison<br />Health Promotion<br />Referral for free legal advice<br />
  5. 5. Student Welfare Service (SWS)<br />In addition the Student Welfare Service offers the following support for <br /> International Students:<br />Immigration advice and visa renewal service<br />Cultural adjustment<br />Orientation programmes and hospitality schemes<br />Family related information and advice<br />Guidance on returning home<br />Advocacy in some legal cases<br />
  6. 6. Student Welfare Service (SWS)<br />Advice is provided by trained and qualified Welfare Officers<br />Each Welfare Officer also has the responsibility of:<br />* Responding to critical incidents and emergencies<br />* Being ‘on-call’ during the evenings and over the weekend<br />* Usually being the first point of contact for most departments<br /> if a student needs help or if departmental staff have a specific query<br />
  7. 7. Welfare Officer (International) : Where does my role fit in the Student Welfare Service? <br />Student Welfare Service<br />Head of Department<br />Senior Welfare Officer<br />Welfare Officer (Finance) x 2<br />Welfare Officer (International) x 3 <br />Welfare Officer (Accommodation) x 1<br />Hardship Fund Administrator <br />Part-time Accommodation Assistant <br />25 Student Assistants<br />Visa Renewal officer <br />International Administrator <br />TULIP Intern<br />
  8. 8. Journey from Medical Genetics to Welfare Officer..<br />
  9. 9. Began as a student…<br />2003-2004<br />President of the MedBioGen Society<br /> Treasurer of the Mixed Hockey Club<br />2004-2005 <br />Elected Medicine and Biological Science <br /> Faculty Representative<br /> Club Captain of the Mixed Hockey Club<br /> ULSU Sports Executive <br /> Nightline Volunteer<br />
  10. 10. Continued as a Graduate..<br /> 2005-2006 <br /> Student’s Union VicePresidentWelfare <br /> 2006- 2007 <br /> Students’ Union <br /> Vice President Welfare (re-elect)<br />
  11. 11. Campaigned on student issues<br /> Lights, Camera Action! <br /> Following a number of attacks on students I launched a campaign in 2005 for more lighting and CCTV coverage on Victoria March 2008 the City Council agreed to support the campaign and spent £50,000 on new lights and cameras!<br />The campaign has even made it’s way on to Wikipedia!<br />
  12. 12. Campaigned on student issues<br /> Worked with Mental Health advisers <br /> promoting mental health wellbeing <br /> Ran Healthy Living campaigns<br /> Worked with Leicestershire Aids Support <br /> Services (LASS) and NHS Chlamydia Screening <br /> Team promoting sexual health awareness <br />
  13. 13. Campaigned on student issues<br /> Worked towards Fairtrade status <br /> for the University and the SU<br /> Worked with City Council, introduction of <br /> Accreditation schemes for student houses <br />
  14. 14. Career in Welfare continued..<br /> …after Sabbatical <br />Senior Student Assistant within Student Welfare Service.<br />Assisted with organising the International Students’ Welcome Programme for over 1500 new international students <br /> …After Senior Student Assistant applied for Welfare Officer vacancy 2008. <br />
  15. 15. Qualifications<br />Degree essential plus at least 2 years experience of working in a similar role (International Students in Higher in Education) <br />Further qualifications:<br />University of Nottingham School of Education: <br /> Certificate for International Education Professionals (CIEP) <br /> Can take up to 3 years, I completed in 1.5 years<br /><ul><li>Advisory role/boundaries
  16. 16. Immigration legislation
  17. 17. Fee Status
  18. 18. Cultural awareness
  19. 19. Mental health awareness
  20. 20. Recruitment + Marketing
  21. 21. Hardship, funding, managing money
  22. 22. Annual training conference</li></ul>Open College Network ‘Mediation in the workplace’ certificate<br />Qualified mediator<br />
  23. 23. Skills needed <br /> Interpersonal skills/ability to empathise<br />Ability to work independently and as part of a team <br />Good communicator<br />Good organisational skills<br />Prioritise heavy workloads<br />Work flexibility important (long days!)<br />
  24. 24. Good days <br />Job satisfaction <br /> Very rewarding role <br /> Meet new people almost every day <br /> No two days are the same<br /> Occasional study visits..<br /> Singapore and Taiwan in January 2011<br /> Expect the unexpected!<br />
  25. 25. Bad days <br />Some very long days<br /> Heavy caseload<br /> Some distressing cases<br /> Keeping up with legislation changes!<br />
  26. 26. Still interested? <br />Tips:<br />Work in an area that you are genuinely interested in<br />Gain work experience (unpaid and paid experience)<br />Talk to people in a similar role – ways in (feel free to contact the SWS and speak to any of the officers)<br />Useful websites for job vacancies:<br />Institutional job vacancy pages (Colleges, Universities, private education providers)<br /><br /> (Education)<br /><br />
  27. 27. Thank you<br />You can ask me questions now <br /> or in the tea break<br />