Social Policy students from the University of St Mark & St John joined staff in a pop-up Question Time debating the EU Referendum.
A panel chaired by Student Union President Dan Whitby included Associate Professor and Head of Social Sciences Dr Lystra Hagley Dickinson, Associate Professor John Ord, Dr Sue Wayman, Sue Lea and Rob Reynolds from the Social Policy teaching team.
Panellists debated questions relating to Border Control. Simone Kelly asked: “What are the effects of open borders if we stay in the EU especially with regard to National Security?” In addition, Sri Mardiani asked: “If we leave the EU, would that effect Britain in a global market?”
Sarah Mccarthy asked a question about Human Rights: “Will we lose our human rights if we leave the EU)?’ and Colin Hamilton about the rise of the far right ‘If we are to remain in the EU, how safe are we with the amount of far right groups growing In Europe?”
The event was organised by Christine Smith from the Department of Social Science and Social Policy students crafted a number of challenging questions to the EU Question time Panel and fielded real time questions via Socrative.
Staff joining the pop-up Question Time were Dr Najib Murab, Lecturer in Business Management; Dr Katy Salisbury and Michael Hall from the Centre of International Language Teacher Education, Dr Hazel Bending, Dr Julie Evans, Christine Smith from the Faculty of Social Science and Sarah McAdam, Journalism, Sports Journalism & Film, Chris Rodham, Campus Service Manager and Tony Atkins, Unison.
Following the debate, Marjon Student Union officers took a vote to ascertain which side they would represent. Student Union President Dan Whitby said: “Unlike other Student Unions in the country, we felt uncomfortable about our own personal opinions influencing the entire student body.
“However, we can’t afford to apolitical. So the outcome was to present a balanced argument online and by giving students a range of resources and information, we can present individuals with a balanced argument and allow students to make an informed choice.”
The Marjon Student Union is undertaking a heavyweight social media engagement campaign to encourage students to vote, including a video from the President and Deputy President urging students to vote. Whitby added: “It’s a once in a generation, once in a lifetime decision that will affect everybody, so it’s vital for students to have their say.”
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