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Friday 8 June 2018 12:21pm

Kia Ora Koutou Katoa,

The Politics Students’ Association of the University of Otago (POLSA) was established in 2017 by Samira Archer and Sarah Hesson – two postgraduate students in the middle of their Masters of Politics. POLSA’s purpose was to bring a sense of community to students of politics within the university.

One year later, this goal has certainly been achieved. With over 150 members and regular events that have thoroughly developed our sense of community, POLSA has created a welcoming atmosphere for all politics students to access.

2017, as the backdrop for the most exciting general election in recent history, was the perfect time to begin a students’ association from scratch. We immediately became involved with the ‘Get out to Vote’ campaign, and advocated for civics education throughout the University to help students get informed and vote. This served us very well in creating a name for ourselves.

To give a recent example of the events that POLSA offers, we kicked this year off with our “Welcome to the Beerhive” event. This was designed to welcome students, particularly first years, into the POLSA community. Soon after this came our quiz night (in which 18 teams participated), and also a new peer mentoring programme that ought to be in full swing by the beginning of the second semester of 2018. This will allow interested first year politics students to have access to additional resources in their studies.

Throughout the rest of the year we also have planned a submission-writing session, a postgraduate seminar series, a social ‘Wine and Cheese’ event, another quiz night with proceeds being donated to charity, and a ‘Career Fair’ that will provide our members with valuable networking opportunities.

We are incredibly proud of how successful POLSA has become in such a short period of time, and we are looking forward to even more collaborative initiatives with the Politics Department in the near future. We can’t wait to make students’ voices heard in all the decisions that directly affect them from this point onwards.

If you’d like to keep up with Politics Students Association, feel free to like us on Facebook at ‘POLSA Otago’ or send any suggestions or comments through to

Nga Mihi,

Hannah Ballantyne
President of Politics Students Association

Sign up to POLSA for 2018!

Want to be a POLSA member this year? Sign up if you want a say in how this group runs, and for discounts to ticketed events! Click the link below and fill out the form to join. It's only $10 and you get all the perks of POLSA membership.

POLSA was established by Politics students in 2017 who believe that if we come together, our university experience can be enriched! You can find them on Facebook and chuck them a like to keep up to date with the latest social and academic events relevant to all Pols students.

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