Former CUSU Sabbatical Officers

For a list of former CUSU Sabbatical Officers, go to our Wikipedia page.


1980 Logo

1990 Logo

Early 2000's Logo

Later 2000's Logo

Current Logo


A Brief History of CUSU

1922: Student representation at the University of Cambridge began when the Cambridge Union Society was was involved in the creation of the National Union of Students (NUS). The NUS and Cambridge Union Society disaffiliated in 1930.

1940's & 50's: By this time most colleges had a JCR; the money for which came from Amalgamated Clubs Committees containing representatives of all the college societies and, in particular, sports clubs. The NUS, in 1952, formed a body of all NUS members in Cambridge known as the Cambridge University Students' Association (CUSA), however this was not recognised by the University.

1960's: The Student Representative Council (SRC) was set up in 1964, containing one representative for each of the then 24 Colleges, plus six cross-campus representatives. JCRs were by now generally the recipient of college funds rather than the Amal Clubs, who would go on to establish the separate Societies Syndicate. In 1969 the SRC became the Student Representative Assembly with a far greater number of representatives - around 200.

1970's & 80's: The SRC changed its name to the Cambridge Student Union (CSU) in 1970 and downsized its representative structure back to one per College. By 1975, the CSU successfully obtained representation on the University Council. The creation of a 'working relationship' was put to the University's Student Matters Committee in 1979, which was then formally established in 1980. In 1984, the CSU was at last recognised officially by the University, and in 1985 thus became the Cambridge University Students' Union. Since then, CUSU's representation on University Committees, as well as its range of areas of interest and services provided, have steadily increased.


Sabbatical Roles

CUSU has had a sabbatical President since 1971, shortly followed by the creation of a Deputy President (Services) in 1973. In 1985 a Welfare sabbatical was created, and in 1989 a fourth sabbatical for Communications was added. The Women's Officer sabbatical position was created in 1994. For a few years in the mid-1990s, the Executive (including the Sabbaticals) were elected as a block, although this was reversed in a major constitutional reform of 1998-9 which, among other things, replaced Communications with the post of Academic Affairs Officer.

The creation of an Access Officer sabbatical, to run CUSU's widening participation campaigns, was approved overwhelmingly by referendum in 2000, taking the total number of sabbaticals to six. These are now named President, Education, Coordinator, Women's, Access, and Welfare & Rights. A referendum in 2009 provided for the establishment of an Ethical Affairs Sabbatical Officer, contingent on funding being available in the future.

More Information: The above is a summarised version of the history of student representation outlined in 'From our Cambridge Correspondent', published by Varsity Publications Ltd, ISBN 0-902240-18-8.

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