At Trinity College Dublin Students’ Union Council (TCDSU), the council voted to create a Mature Student Committee within the union. The motion was proposed by Jimi Donohoe, the Mature Students Part-Time Officer (PTO) and was seconded by TCDSU Education Officer Niamh McCay.
When asked to speak on the motion, Jimi stated that he wants to establish a Mature Student Committee in an effort to “bring together various people from across the college, who all have various roles related to mature students” and support mature students in the unique issues they face.
He continued, stating: “I want to be sure that people are aware of the supports that exist and that they can [access the support systems] moving forward.”
The motion was passed with a unanimous vote of the TCDSU Council.
The committee will be composed of nine students, and will include the SU Mature Student Officer, the Students’ Union Student Parent officer, the auditor of the Mature Student Society, and either the President or Vice President of the Graduate Students’ Union (GSU) as well as a number of elected positions which will be open to any mature students.
Speaking to Trinity News ahead of the council meeting, Donohoe explained: “Many mature students are under huge financial pressure due to childcare costs, paying a mortgage or sky-high rental costs. I have 4-5 mature student friends who have dropped out or fell behind because of financial pressure or other personal issues. Each of them feels that they did not receive the support they should have from the college. Therefore, the aim of the committee is to bring these issues to the table, improve the support available and ensure the mature student community is aware of the supports available to them.”
He added that “the idea behind the committee is to bring together staff and students from across the college, who, in their various roles, represent mature students, or a sizable proportion of mature students”.