Asha Ali

SU President

Hey, I’m Asha Ali, and I’m your Students’ Union President!

I’m a Somali-Norwegian graduate, I studied Linguistics and Sociology and now I have been elected to represent students full time! My job is to make sure you are heard, whether university or SU related – at the end of the day we’re here to put you at the centre. You have picked one of the best universities and myself, the rest of the sabbatical officer team and the SU are so excited to support you throughout your time here.

If you ever want to grab a coffee and chat, or want to grill me on how I’m best representing you, please don’t hesitate to contact me by sending me an email below.

Memes and Buzzfeed quizzes are also welcomed (tweet me @SUPresEssex )

Send me an email


out of term update 3

Hi all,

I'm a week early with my updates this time as I will be on annual leave next week (so excited - I haven't slept since May). It's been a very busy week preparing for everything to be in place whilst I'm away for a week - mainly intro meetings with university staff such as Bryn Morris as well as meeting with my team in preperation for term start!

  • This year the university changed the way in which first years were welcomed. They will no longer hold the big ICLH welcome talks but will instead receive everything from their departments. So for this I will be recording a welcome video from myself to welcome new students to the university as well as welcome back any postgrads who have decided to continue their studies here!
  • I also attended a governance training in London that was delivered by Advance HE to learn more about student representation on university boards which was very informative.

That's all from me this time so see you in 3 weeks!

- Asha xo

Out of term update 2


Last week we had the YUFE conference in Essex which was very exciting. For those of you who didn't hear about the YUFE allience last year let me give you a quick rundown (I will dedicate a whole post to this at the end of October):

YUFE stands for Young Universities for the Future of Europe. It consists of 8 universities from across Europe and the aim is to have a YUFE university where the 8 different universities become different campuses of the same university. At different times of the year we go to one of the 8 universities to work on different work packages to make this a possibility. Each university has a student rep (SU President for Essex students) to attend the meetings to make sure that students provide input at evey stage of the creation of YUFE.


We went to Southend to present the Big Plan to the senior members of staff on the Southend campus - this exercise helps us identify which university members of staff can help us in terms of delivering the Big Plan. But it also allows for the university staff to enagage in our work for the upcoming year.


Out of term update 1

Welcome back all!

Here's my latest update (I promise they'll get more fun/interesting after training month)


  • These past two weeks have consisted of further training for the sabbatical officers. Notebly, the Anti-Semitism training, which was delivered by the Union of Jewish Students, was an incredibly informative session and I'm looking forward to working with UJS and JSoc to create a more accessible campus and student/staff life for our Jewish community.
  • Last week we attended a dinner at the Vice-Chancellor's house where he met the new team and we discussed why we ran for our positions, our passions and how we will be representing our membership.
  • We also implemented a new Executive Board Meeting that consisted of the 7 Sabbatical officers and the 8 Directors and deputies (chaired by myself as President and the CEO) where we discuss everything taking place at the university and SU. This meeting occurs weekly and it will be the meeting where all major updates will be delivered to the sabbs.
  • If you follow us on instagram (which you should because it's awesome), you would've seen the accommodation tours have started! This is so our lovely new members can see exactly what they need to bring and for you to start your journey with us a bit earlier!
  • I sat on the interview panel for the additional proctor (which was on our demand for change petition) - unfortunately none of the candidates were successful. However, a second round of interviews will take place in October which Ana (VP Welfare) will be sitting on so we are hopeful we will find the best candidate!
  • We had a visit from Kent SU who have been very interested in some of the things we do at the SU - namely heirloom and the big plan - so we were able to learn more from each other and exchange best practice.

See you all next time!

- Asha xo



New team, who dis?

 July has been a very busy month for the sabbs – training, training, some more training and some big plan planning meetings. Week one and two started with us getting stuck in with Big Plan planning sessions; working with staff from all over the SU, we used your feedback to establish how we can make this year’s plan successful. Through our roles and passions we also decided which officers would sit on which Big Plan group:


Mental Health









Food on campus


Cost of Living



My Course




We also did some training for the second side of our role as trustees. As well as public speaking training, training sessions with the University to find out more about the PGR learning cycle and many many more (honestly, a screenshot of our calendar last month would give you all a clearer picture!).

As a new team we’ve also been doing some amazing team bonding activities so we could get to know each other and learn how each other works. One of the activities involved being on campus bright and early (that 5:30am alarm still gives us nightmares) to go on a photo scavenger hunt to earn money for our stay in Brighton. If we didn’t know each other before that trip, we promise we do now!


This month has been so informative and has really helped in us understanding how to effectively fulfil our roles this year.


Some of the sabbs also graduated 3 weeks into the role!! It was a genuine week of excitement and pride after 3 / 4 years of hard work. 

Looking forward to the next blog so we can share more of the role based work we’re getting up to after these 7 weeks of training!

- Asha xo


Welcome to Essex and my blog


Welcome to my blog. The idea of the blog is to give you update about my work, what I do day to day, the work that the Union is doing, and important project or events that I want to highlight.

We always describe this Union as a collective that works together in order to achieve together a transformative educational and student experience. You are an integral part of this and if you have any question or want to get involved send me an email.

Thanks for reading!

- Asha xo