Marissa BeattySocieties Officer

Hello! I’m Marissa Beatty and I’m your Societies Officer this year. My role is to oversee and support the 250+ student societies we have here at Warwick – from brand new societies just getting started all the way through to more established societies who are looking to grow and develop.

Student societies are renowned for being creative, innovative, enterprising and diverse. As a collective, societies at Warwick consistently raise hundreds of thousands of pounds for charity, help their members develop a wide range of skills and put on thousands of fantastic events throughout the year – including socials, conferences, performances and balls.

My aim for this year is to give all societies – no matter how big or small – the tools and resources they need to raise funds for, organise and promote their wide range of activities. I’m really keen to put societies on the map this year by launching a campus-wide campaign called ‘Creative Warwick’ which will showcase all the incredible things Warwick societies get up to.

If you have any questions about our societies (or if you want to set up a new one!), feel free to come and see me in SUHQ or drop me an email.

Contact Marissa

The Societies Officer's office is on the top floor of SUHQ.

Marissa's Latest Blog

Find all of Marissa's blog posts on her blog page.

  • Tue 09 May 2017 13:45

    It should probably come as no surprise to students that, in advance of the upcoming General Election, Parliament recently rushed through the Government’s Higher Education & Research Bill. This disastrous set of proposals – widely criticised by Universities, Students’ Unions, Lecturers, Researchers, Students and Staff nationwide – has now become law.

    I will be the first to admit that this is as wearying as it is infuriating. You would think that politicians would have more respect for the young people whose futures are most affected by their policy decisions – but it’s becoming increasingly apparent that they intend to do nothing of the sort. And there is a reason for this: they simply do not fear us as voters. At the precise moment when our ranks ought to be swelling, we are seeing the number of 18-24 year olds casting their votes shrinking. I understand people’s disillusionment; it so often feels like our voices aren’t being heard even when we do speak up. But this is YOUR future. It is the future of the country many of you will inherit upon graduation, and the nation you will live, work and raise families in. It is time to step up and take ownership of that.

    Make no mistake, this Act represents the wholesale privatisation of Higher Education in the UK. The proposed ‘Teaching Excellence Framework’ – supposedly designed to provide “value for money” – has been exposed as little more than a mechanism for institutions to bully staff into retooling data for maximum PR advantage and raise tuition fees.  Rather than freeing up “student choice”, it transfers the balance of power to those institutions with the ability to spin their numbers in a bid to navigate the new TEF rankings. But students should not be downgraded to the status of mere consumers. Education is both a public right and a public good. This ruinous agenda is the final nail in the coffin of the idea that Higher Education is anything other than a stepping-stone to a place in the labour market.

    And there is a very tangible human cost to all of this, one which we are seeing start to emerge all around us. The stress of this new hyper-competitive environment and the attendant pressure to perform is harming students en masse by contributing to the destruction of our mental health, one individual at a time.

    It is now nearly twenty years since tuition fees were introduced in the UK. Because so many of us have never known anything different, it is easy to forget that things have not always been this way – and that they can be different again. Moreover, we CAN make a difference, because pressure from students has already influenced core elements of the Bill itself. Key concessions were granted as a result of NUS lobbying, while sustained pressure in the House of Lords forced a number of further amendments. On the ground, the national NSS Boycott has helped to shape the national narrative and draw attention to the flaws at the heart of this Government’s proposals. It has shown that thousands of students nationwide refuse to be pawns in their game.

    Of course, there are those who oppose such tactics, claiming them to be ineffectual and instead advocating that we “just get on with things”. And that is no coincidence, since so often these views come from those who benefit most from the drop-off in student engagement. They are absolutely banking on your distraction or lack of interest. Your apathy, disillusionment and ultimate submission are the tools which fuel their agenda.

    But there is another way to show your opposition to the sustained regiment of abuse faced by students here in the UK: VOTE in the upcoming General Election. When we are not being listened to, it is time to make ourselves heard in a deafening roar. When I suggested earlier that governments don’t fear us, perhaps they actually do – after all, how else do you explain the decision to arbitrarily wipe thousands of students from the voting register over the past couple of years? They are doing everything in their power to demoralise us, demonise us, and make us all the scapegoats for decades of failed policy. It is time to make the system work for us. It is time to stand up, be counted and force a change.

    Register to vote HERE.

Marissa's Election

The election for Societies Officer takes place during the Officer Elections in term 2.