YUSU and GSA Merger to Go Ahead


Daisy Couture (she/her) reports on the upcoming scheme

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Image by YUSU

By Daisy Couture

It has recently been announced that the University of York Student Union (YUSU) and the Graduate Student Associates (GSA) are merging.

On 1 March 2023, a statement was issued from YUSU President Pierrick Rogers and GSA President Vivienne Cao. The statement declared that: “Board and management representatives, including both of us, have been holding meetings over this academic year, supported by the Academic Registrar, to consider the benefits of establishing a single, unified Students’ Union for all students at the University.”

It also read that: “In the coming months, we will be issuing a joint survey to garner your thoughts on what a new union could look like. We will also be running targeted focus groups for student groups we feel have been traditionally left out of Union activities and for postgraduate researchers specifically to ensure our transitional arrangements and the new union deliver for them.”

On 8 February 2024, another statement was issued regarding the Articles of Association. This is “YUSU’s key governing document. It sets out [the] Union's structure, purpose, and objectives, and determines governance activities such as how trustees are appointed, how policy is set and how core Union functions should be undertaken.”

Following on from this, YUSU held an Annual General Meeting on 22 February 2024. Its purpose was to gain student approval to change the Article of Association in preparation for the merger. Students who attended were given the opportunity to talk to Sabbatical Officers and Trustees, gain a better understanding of what the merger will mean for the student community and raise any queries.

The main purpose of the meeting was to decide what the single SU governing document will look like, such as the number of Sabbs. It was decided that there will be seven Sabbs.

Over the coming months, the two unions will unite to create a single union that accommodates every student at York, undergraduate and postgraduate alike.