General Secretary’s Mariana Podesta-Diverio and James Leeder
Greetings, succulent comrades, and welcome to another year of simple extensions and general debauchery. Or, if you’re a first year, we’re so sorry. It was never meant to be like this.
For those of you who came from schools where your SRC’s greatest achievement was selling lamingtons or raising $80 for the Salvos, be thankful that you are now at university. This SRC is different; it has staff, it provides services, it looks out for your interests, and most importantly, it gets shit done.
We’re Jariana, and our role in the SRC is fairly bureaucratic. Simply put, our job is to look after the finances and budget of the SRC and promote its activities. Our job is halfway between the secretary and treasurer role because, well, a couple of years ago they amalgamated the secretary and treasurer role. Still with us? Good.
Remember that $140 you either paid or deferred when you were enrolling a couple of weeks ago? That’s your Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF). That sum of money, paid by all students, goes into a large pool and gets distributed between SUPRA, the USU, Sydney Uni Sport and Fitness (SUSF), Cumberland Students’ Guild, Student Support Services, and yours truly – the Student’s Representative Council. The SRC, along with other student organisations, is in the middle of negotiations that determine how much each organisation receives. The SSAF money we receive – which is generally just above the $1million mark – goes to paying our caseworkers and lawyers, our activism, printing Honi Soit, and running our second-hand bookshop in Wentworth just to name a few. It’s our lifeblood, and our only source of income. SUSF, on the other hand, who receive upwards of $3.8 million (the most of any student organisation), offer no free services to students and have a generally hideous colour scheme. They can’t sit with us.
One of the things we’re proudest to boast about is the SRC’s free casework service. We have a number of full-time staff dedicated to seeing students with academic, financial or personal problems. Some of the staff will be at the SRC stall, as will we, come up and say hello.
We also want you to read the Orientation Handbook, which we produced, which has a bunch of recipes for disaster including places to eat, drink, fart, and fuck around campus without attracting unwanted attention from bewildered passers-by, or putting a hole into your wallet. Rejoice!
Anyway, we’re rambling now. So, uh, previous general secretaries have made names for themselves as the writers of inebriatingly dull Honi reports, but you can expect more incoherent hack babble from the desk of Jariana. Good day.