Gloucestershire (Hybrid)
Unpaid role, expenses paid

Actively Interviewing

This organisation is scheduling interviews as the applications come in. Don’t miss your opportunity, apply now!

Job description

This is an exciting time to be joining UoGSU. We are about to start the journey to develop our new strategy as our current strategy enters its third and final year. As an organisation we have been focused on communities, change and the education of our members.  

We are recruiting 2 external trustees to begin serving on the board from November 2023. Each term lasts 3 years and trustees can serve a maximum of 2 consecutive terms. Extensions are dependent on re-election to the board.

The individuals appointed as trustees will need to be sympathetic to the aims of the SU and more generally share a commitment to the broader values of the student movement; student representation, student rights and the student experience – and the importance of students having a platform to organize together to help make these values a reality.

The role requires a careful balance; trustees need to respect the democratic will of the membership where possible but also be willing to think creatively, challenge constructively and point out potential risk. The Board is comprised of Student Trustees and External Trustees and oversees the work of a team of permanent staff and Student Officers led by the Chief Executive.

An eye for detail to ensure the SU is being well governed and the ability to see future opportunities are also important.

We would like our new trustees to have the following profiles:

Role One:

For this role we are looking for an individual with experience and expertise in finance – this trustee will chair our Audit and Risk committee. You will be a qualified accountant with experience of financial management, governance and oversight and an understanding of financial audit best practice. Previous experience of Audit and Risk committee work is of interest but not essential.

Role Two:

For this role we are looking for individuals with business/organizational experience who can bring a mix of expertise in one or more of the following areas:

-   Business Development

-   Social Enterprise

-   Commercial Development

-   Business Performance

-   Charity governance

General candidate requirements:

All candidates will need to be comfortable reading and understanding financial information (or be willing to learn more about this aspect of the role). They should also have the following:

-   An understanding of business management.

-   A willingness and ability to devote the necessary time and effort to attend board and other meetings, including preparing and reading for those meetings.

-   A willingness to speak their mind and contribute.

-   Excellent communication and interpersonal skills.

-   Analytical ability and good independent judgement.

-   An understanding and acceptance of the role of a Charity’s Board of Trustees (including the legal duties, responsibilities, and liabilities of Trusteeship).

-   A commitment to act in accordance with the Nolan principles for ethical conduct in public service and the SU own values.

Desirable but not essential:

-   Recent experience of the higher education sector or of Students’ Unions.

-   Experience or knowledge of board governance.


The role is as an unpaid volunteer but all reasonable out of pocket expenses such as travel to board and committee meetings will be reimbursed.

We will provide the support new trustees need to perform effectively in the role including an annual review, induction, and opportunities to attend external training.

We hope that trustees will regard the role as an excellent opportunity to develop their own skills and experience, and their C.V., as well as the reward of knowing they are helping the SU in its work in enhancing the experience of the students we represent.

 Main purpose of the role 

The trustees are responsible for the overall governance and strategic direction of the Students’ Union. This includes effective use of resources, maintaining the long-term financial viability of the organisation and the well-being of staff.

 Main duties and responsibilities

Trustees will:

1.      Act as voting members of the Board with full authority and responsibility to develop and approve policies, procedures, and regulations for the operation of the University of Gloucestershire Students’ Union (UoGSU) and monitor the Students’ Union’s (SU) financial projects and overall performance.

2.      Ensure the SU focuses on its charitable purpose and follows and implements the policies adopted by its membership.

3.      Discuss and approve any changes to the mission and purpose of UoGSU that they feel may be required.

4.      Approve the long-term financial plan of the SU.

5.      Define financial goals and targets.

6.      Evaluate the SU’s performance on an ongoing basis against the UoGSU strategic plan and approve adjustments in response to the external context.

7.      Ensure the well-being of staff and the capacity of the SU to deliver its mission.

8.      Review, discuss and formally approve all applications for the charitable grants the SU wishes to make.

9.      Be active members of at least one Board sub-committee. The Finance Trustee will chair the Audit & Risk sub-committee.

10. Make decisions on any matters that are proposed by sub-committees of the Board.

11. Confirm the appointment of the external auditors and endorse their continued employment on an annual basis.

12. Interpret and rule on the Articles of Association as required.

13. Evaluate and review:

a.      the SU’s progress in meeting the targets set out in its Strategic Plan, at regular intervals within the 3-year scope of the Plan.

b.     the job description and performance of the Chief Executive on an annual basis.

c.      the value for money achieved in the allocation of SU resources and how those resources have impacted on different areas of the SU’s work.

d.     the effectiveness of the Board as a whole.

14. Institute and oversee:

a.      SU-wide policies such as EDI and Sustainability so that they cover all areas of the SU’s work and meet Charity Commission requirements.

b.     policies in relation to recruitment, staffing and personnel.

c.      policies relating to financial practice and reporting.

15. Monitor expenditure in line with the agreed budget.

In addition, the Finance Trustee will:

16. Appraise the long-term financial plan of the SU and advise the Board on its reliability.

17. Benchmark financial goals and targets against accepted financial standards.


Application resources
Application Instructions

We encourage applicants to apply as soon as possible, as we aim to work to the timetable indicated in our job pack; however, we appreciate applicants may need more time and have accounted for that with a later official closing date.

Refreshed on: 27 November 2023
Closing date: 11 January 2024 at 23:59
Job ref: UoGSU External Trustee
Tags: Finance, Trustees

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