History

The Student Publication Association (SPA) was formed in 2012 by David Gilani, a sabbatical officer at the University of Southampton, who also served as the association’s first Chair.

Having grown to an organisation now representing over 125 student publications, we registered as a charity in England and Wales (No: 1187383) in January 2020.

It was set up to provide a support network to online and print student publications, similar to the work done by the National Student Television Association (NaSTA) and Student Radio Association (SRA) for television and radio respectively.

Two years later, in 2014, we took on board our first team of Regional Officers, to support members on a local level, and ensure they were able to access a greater level of backing for regional awards and recognition.

In 2015, we expanded to become an international organisation, after members voted unanimously at that year’s Annual General Meeting to expand to the Republic of Ireland. We welcomed our first Irish publication later that year.

Since then, we have continued to grow our membership, and now represent over 125 student publications and nearly 500 individual members.

We have worked with organisations such as the Press Association and National Union of Students, as well as corporate sponsors such as City, University of London, Bloomberg and the Association of British Science Writers.

In 2020, we held our first ever online National Conference, as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, and it proved to be our biggest and cheapest ever. 450 people registered for tickets, and for the first time, we were able to offer it completely free of charge to all attendees.

We continue to provide support, training and recognition to student publications facing challenging times in face of the coronavirus pandemic.

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Past Committee Members:

Committee Members are elected at the annual AGM held at the national conference by the membership body.

Past Chairs:

David Gilani, University of Southampton, 2012 – 2013

Chris Williams, Cardiff University, 2013 – 2014

Sophie Hannah Davis, Nottingham Trent University, 2014 – 2015

Jem Collins, University of Kent, 2015 – 2016

Dan Seamarks, University of Westminster, 2016 – 2017

Dan Falvey, University of East Anglia, 2017 – 2018

Conor Matchett, University of Edinburgh, 2018 – 2019

Owain Evans, University of Exeter, 2019 – 2020


Past Digital Media Officers:

Daniel Chesterton, University of Portsmouth, 2013 – 2014

Aubrey Allegretti, University of Sussex, 2014 – 2016

Dan Falvey, University of East Anglia, 2016 – 2017

James Chesson, University of East Anglia, 2017 – 2018

Xavier Voigt-Hill, University of Southampton, 2018 – 2019

Position abolished in 2019, revived as a Project Officer in 2020


Past Development Officers:

Natasha Sawires, De Montford University, 2013 – 2014

Elliot Davies, St Andrews, 2014 – 2015

Jon May, Swansea University, 2015 – 2016

Gemma Shields, University of Aberdeen, 2016 – 2017

Conor Matchett, University of Edinburgh, 2017 – 2018

Owain Evans, University of Exeter, 2018 – 2019

Position abolished in 2019


Past Membership and Communications Officers (Communications Officer from 2019):

Steph Powell, Southampton Solent, 2013 – 2014

Kerry Sclater, University of Southampton, 2014 – 2015

Megan Downing, University of Southampton, 2015 – 2016

Fraser Whieldon, University of Kent, 2016 – 2017

Jessica Frank-Keyes, University of East Anglia, 2017 – 2018

Sarah Redman, University of Exeter, 2018 – 2019

Mila Georgieva, University of Dundee, 2019 – 2020

Ben Warner, University of Sheffield, 2020


Past Marketing and Events Officers (Conference and Events Officer from 2019):

Hannah Bracegirdle, De Montford University, 2013 – 2014

Philippa Skett, Imperial College London, 2014 – 2015

Brad Johnson, Hertfordshire University, 2015 – 2016

Hannah Mylrea, University of Southampton, 2016 – 2017

Megan Baynes, University of East Anglia, 2017 – 2018

David White, University of Dundee, 2018 – 2019


Past Sponsorship Officers:

Annissa Warsame, University of Exeter, 2019 – 2020


Past Training & Opportunities Officers

Edd Church, University of Exeter, 2019 – 2020


Past Officers:

In 2014 the SPA officer was expanded to include a regional officer system, giving local representation to it’s members. The officers are selected via an application process set by the committee.

In 2015 the system was also expanded to include an online officer and an alumni officer, as well as an admin assistant.

South West Officers:

Megan Downing, University of Southampton 2014 – 2015
Hannah MylreaUniversity of Southampton 2015 – 2016
Tommy Parker, University of Bath, 2016 – 2017
Owain Evans, University of Exeter 2017 – 2018
Edd Church, University of Exeter, 2018 – 2019
Aaron Loose, University of Exeter, 2019 – 2020


South East Officers:

Jem Collins, University of Kent 2014 – 2015
Sean Howlett, University of Hertfordshire, 2015
Fraser Whieldon, University of Kent, 2015 – 2016
Rowena Field-Carter, University of Essex, 2016-2017
Owain Evans, University of Exeter 2017 – 2018
Carly May-Kavanagh, University of Southampton, 2018 – 2019
Jessica Hubbard, University of Sussex, 2019 – 2020


London

Marion Legrand, University of East London, 2014 – 2015
Zaki Dogliani, University of Bristol, 2015 – 2017
Abbie Cheeseman, Royal Holloway, University of London, 2017 – 2018
George Cook, City University of London, 2018 – 2019
Natalie Rose, University of Middlesex, 2019 – 2020


Midlands

Katrina Chilver, De Montford, 2014 – 2015
Sian Elvin, Warwick University, 2015 – 2016

Katie Wilson, Nottingham Trent, 2016 – 2017

Ben Baruch, University of Nottingham, 2017 – 2018
Eleanor Gray, University of Nottingham 2018 – 2019
Jack Harvey, University of Coventry, 2019 – 2020


Northern England

Jon May, University of Sheffield, 2014 – 2015
Chloe Coleman, University of Sheffield, 2015
Joss Woodend, University of Sheffield, 2016
James Dix, Northumbria University, 2016 – 2017
Jessica Murray, University of Sheffield, 2018 – 2019
Grace Dean, Newcastle University, 2019 – 2020


Scotland

Racheal Miller, St Andrews University, 2014 – 2016
Conor Matchett, University of Edinburgh, 2016 – 2017
Polly Smythe, University of Edinburgh, 2017 – 2018
Mila Georgieva, University of Dundee, 2018 – 2019
Alexander Arnaudov, University of Dundee, 2019 – 2020


Wales

Tom Eden, Cardiff University, 2014 – 2015
Hannah Butler, Cardiff University, 2017 – 2018
Maria Mellor, Cardiff University, 2018 – 2019
Chloe Edwards, Cardiff University, 2019


Republic of Ireland & Northern Ireland (Northern Ireland until 2015)

Kylie Noble, Queens University Belfast, 2014 – 2015
Niamh McGovern, Queens University Belfast, 2015 – 2017

Robert O’Sullivan, University College Cork, 2017 – 2018
Dylan O’Neill, Dublin City University, 2018 – 2019
Sam Cox, Trinity College Dublin, 2019
Matthew Moynihan, University College Cork, 2020


Online Editor

Emily Townsend, University of Essex, 2015 – 2016
Bridie Pearson-Jones, University of Southampton, 2016 – 2017
Lucy Skoulding, University of Warwick, 2018 – 2019
Position abolished 2019

Alumni Officer

Michael O’Connell Davidson, Cardiff University, 2015 – 2016
Jack May, Cambridge University, 2016 – 2017
Position abolished 2017-2019
Katie Jenkins, University of Exeter, 2019 – 2020


Admin Support Officer

Alex Vince, Southampton Solent, 2015 – 2016
Fiona Grew, University of Edinburgh, 2016 – 2017
Position abolished in 2017

Opportunities Officer

Abbie Cheeseman, Royal Holloway University of London, 2018 – 2019
Position abolished in 2019


Life Members:

David Gilani, University of Southampton (2013)
David Gilani was voted as a life member by members at the AGM in 2013 for his work setting up the organisation. He remains a trustee.

Jem Collins, University of Kent (2016)
Jem Collins was voted as a life member by her peers in 2016 for her exceptional work in expanding the organisation as chair. She remains a trustee of the organisation.

Aubrey Allegretti, University of Sussex (2016)
Aubrey was voted a life member by his peers in 2016 for his two years service as digital media and his dedication and commitment to the organisation. He remains a trustee.

Elliot Davies, St Andrew’s (2017)
Elliot wrote the first constitution of the SPA and was awarded lifetime membership for his continued commitment to the organisation. He remains a trustee.

Sophie Davis, Nottingham Trent (2017)
Sophie stepped up to host the second SPA conference after all of the elected committee disapeared. She was voted a life member in 2017 in recognition of her efforts.

Bridie Pearson-Jones, University of Southampton (2016)
Bridie Pearson-Jones was voted as a life member by her peers in 2016 for her work in student media.

Ben Jackson, City University (2016)
Ben Jackson was voted as a life member by his peers in 2016 for his work in student media, where he saved LondonStudent from the brink of extinction. All outstanding commitment winners are awarded lifetime membership.

Abbie Llewelyn, University of York (2017)
Abbie was voted as a life member by his peers in 2017 for her work in student media, where she successfully crowdfunded to save her paper, York Vision. All outstanding commitment winners are awarded lifetime membership.

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