EXMSS Committee Member: Position Description

Overview

Participation on the Executive Committee of EXMSS is a great opportunity to gain valuable experience in organisational governance, while helping your fellow students at the same time.

You will learn skills that are highly transferable to all kinds of organisations, from the smallest community clubs through to the largest corporations.

In your time on the EXMSS Executive Committee, you will devise, supervise and (at times) implement solutions to one basic problem – how to creatively leverage EXMSS’ modest resources to deliver maximum benefit for extramural students.

Stakeholders

The internal stakeholders are:

  • EXMSS President, vice-President and other committee members
  • EXMSS non-executive office bearers

The external stakeholders are:

  • Massey University’s:
    • Distance students
    • Distance alumni
    • MUSA –  the “Parent” student union
    • Distance Volunteer Advocates
    • Manawatu Campus Registrar (who administers the Student Services Levy funding)
    • Academic staff
    • Professional staff
    • Council and various governing committees
  • The wider community

Committee Culture

The EXMSS Committee brings together a people from highly diverse backgrounds and perspectives. Meeting roughly 6 times a year over Google Hangouts or Skype connections (usually on a weekday evening for 1-2 hours), the Committee discusses issues around student support and generating/managing resources, and seeks to arrive at consensus solutions.

The President bears responsibility for day-to-day operations and basic decision making of EXMSS, but for major and/or strategic decisions requires the mandate of the Committee.

Areas of Strategic Oversight

The members of Committee work together to make optimal decisions on areas such as:

  • Allocation of scholarships to distance students – funded by the revenues from over a nest egg of invested funds
  • Procurement of funding from Student Services Levy payments, subject to approval from the Campus Registrar
  • Advocacy for distance students on a case-by-case and collective basis
  • Ongoing support services such as shuttle transfers, phone contact centre
  • Lobbying various stakeholders within the University in relation to issues of concern to distance students

Benefits

Serving as an EXMSS Committee member offers substantial benefits at both personal and professional levels

  • Satisfaction of helping out your fellow students
  • Learning about areas of strategic governance
  • Enriching your own CV with extra skills, and a proven commitment to service, which will make you stand out from other job applicants
  • Gaining numerous micro-skills of business management, such as IT skills, accounting, administration, strategy, supervision
  • For meeting attendances and work done on behalf of EXMSS, honorarium payments are available to compensate your time and energy

Duties

Committee members are expected to attend a 1-2 hour meeting at least six times per year. Up to two of these meetings may be face-to-face, with transport and accommodation fully funded. Meeting dates/times are negotiable, but regular attendance is a must.

Committee members are expected to engage in frank and reasoned discussion, bringing their own views and perspectives to the table, while always seeking the highest good of the organisation. Often this can mean making effort to harmonise their views with those of others, or at times even letting their own views take a back seat in favour of others. In all actions, being mindful of the welfare of the wider distance students community as the prime consideration.

Day to day interactions operate through:

  • A private Facebook group
  • Facebook Messenger instant messaging
  • Shared Google documents
  • Email

Workload is negotiable and, subject to your own availability, can range from 1-2 hours per month to several hours a week. Expectation of pro-bono hours is minimal, with most duties being eligible for honorarium payment.