Day three: international student ambassadors, GDPR, digital messaging and meet our new Chief Exec!

Blog for members
05 July 2019
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Couldn't make it to conference this year? Just want to refresh your memory? Web and Communications Manager, Jane McCarthy, shares her thoughts on the final day. Please add any comments below! 

After a self-guided walk around campus, we’re into our final day at the University of Keele. Sessions today cover mental health, safety and security, hate crime and GDPR.

I heard from Unihealth and University College Birmingham about a new digital messaging programme to support students’ mental health. It explored how proactive messaging helps international and home students' transition to university.

They gave us a demonstration of the messaging service (which uses Messenger rather than requiring students to download a separate app to reduce barriers) but also gave tips and practical recommendations. Highlighting the importance of sending messages to students on Sundays, importance of timing the messages at peak points throughout the year and to send messages about wider wellbeing.

To finish our conference delegates had an opportunity to ask our new Chief Executive Anne Marie Graham any questions and hear about her future plans for UKCISA.

Anne Marie Graham talked about the opportunities presented to us all regarding the Immigration White Paper and added that 

"UKCISA is uniquely placed to ensure that international students are embedded in the delivery of the strategy."

She called for members to keep sharing feedback that we can pass on to our contacts at the Home Office and to raise at meetings. 

Anne Marie also highlighted that UKCISA will be working to improve our contact with international students directly and increasing our work on international student experience. 

"We are primarily known for our work with visas and immigration, due to the invaluable work our team does. We want to raise awareness of all the support we offer to students as a whole. Before I joined UKCISA that was the area that I really benefitted from."

After a whirlwind few days of learning and networking that rounds our conference up for this year, but put next year’s date in the diary! UKCISA 2020: Swansea University. 1-3 July 2020


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