Meet Your: Welfare Officer 2023 – John Longwill

Hi everyone, my name is Jack (or John) Longwill and I am your new QUT Guild Welfare Officer for 2023. I am beyond excited to begin in this role and to continue the fantastic work of outgoing Welfare Officer, Alex Marks. Before I continue with my plans for, and challenges within, the Guild – a little bit about myself first.  

I just completed (dependent on the effectiveness of my caffeine fuel cramming) my fourth year of my Law and Behavioural Science (Psychology) double degree. The two best fun facts I can give about myself are: in 2022 I travelled interstate to play semi-professional dodgeball; and just under two years ago I did not know professional dodgeball existed. I was able to do this as part of the QUT Ballstars Dodgeball Club with help from funding from the Guild. This was really the first time it clicked for me – just how much the Guild can, and does, do for students.  

I started my involvement with the Guild last year, filling a Law and Business Faculty Councillor role. This position, alongside other similar roles, have allowed me to take a peak behind the curtain of QUT itself. It has become painfully clear to me that there is a fatal disconnect between the senior administrative staff (and Executive) of the University, and the students and academics. 

This is best exemplified by the recent media coverage surrounding QUT’s worrying staffing changes, and workplace culture. QUT needs to be pushed into putting more resources into caring for its staff and students’ mental and physical wellbeing, and less into expensive finishes in *someone’s* private bathroom. 

In light of this, it is absolutely imperative that all of the Guild’s current and future welfare services are communicated effectively to students. And this presents the main challenge that we, as the Guild Executive, have this year; establishing the Guild as a go to source of help and information, not only for students who feel like they’ve been unfairly treated at University, but for students who just need a general helping hand (or even just those who want to play an obscure sport). 

As part of Grow’s policy, we will be putting an emphasis (and increased funding) on the Foodbank, to manage the increasing demand for this service. We will also be introducing free dinners during exam block to (hopefully) decrease the stress levels of late-night studiers. The change I am the most excited to introduce is ensuring that all the microwaves on campus actually work; too many times are students stuck between the choice of either walking miles to get to a functional microwave, or eating cold food. In future, this won’t even have to be a decision.  

If you want to talk about anything further, or just get in touch for a chat, please do not hesitate to reach out to 

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