The RMS AGM takes place every year in April and a new council is elected to manage the affairs of the Society for a period of one year.
The council consists of the Senior President, three Junior Presidents, a Junior and Senior Secretary and eight convenors, each tasked with managing different aspects of the Society.
Elections are conducted anonymously using the PR-STV system, where members in attendance can vote for multiple candidates for each position by ranking candidates in order of preference.
To be eligible to run for a position on the council, candidates must be members of the RMS and have attended at least 5 business meetings of the society that year. Business meetings include our Tuesday talks and the RMS National Conference. Exam tutorials do not count as ordinary business meetings.
Members wishing to run for a council position should nominate themselves in advance of the AGM by signing the nomination page outside the office. This page will be available for at least two weeks prior to the AGM. Candidates must be proposed and seconded by two other members of the RMS.
Candidates for Junior Presidency must have previously held a council position and candidates for Senior Presidency must have previously acted as a Junior President or Senior Secretary.
Description of roles
The Senior President (SP) chairs the Society’s events; from the Presidents’ Annual Dinner and fortnightly talks to the Conference and Burns Supper, as well as monthly council meetings. The SP oversees the running of the RMS by guiding other council members, delegating tasks and ensuring that people are doing their jobs in a timely and professional manner. The SP acts as a point of contact between the RMS and other organisations that want to organise joint events – for example, the RMS assists with Medical School Open Days and Post Offer Visit Days, and gives an insight into medical school life to secondary school students. The SP reports to the RMS Trust twice during each Session and sits on the panel for Travel and Study interviews. Above all, the SP acts as an ambassador for the RMS both during and outwith RMS events.
Junior Presidents (JPs) support the President in ensuring that the Society runs smoothly and select other council positions for which to offer information and advice. JPs undertake a main responsibility for the year, which may be Conference, Freshers’ Week or academia, and cover additional tasks such as sponsorship and the Leiden exchange. JPs are more experienced members who have demonstrated commitment and responsibility to the RMS, and as such take greater charge of problems and guide other convenors. As with all council members, JPs are expected to attend and assist at all RMS events and help with medical school events where possible.
The Senior Secretary takes minutes of the monthly council meetings and collects agendas from council members prior to meetings. The Senior Secretary is also in charge of AGM sign ups, ensuring that all members are aware of the positions and who can run for council. This role involves a good relationship with our permanent secretaries and offers flexibility in helping with other council tasks.
The Junior Secretary takes attendance for all RMS meetings, including talks, tutorials and conference. At the end of the year, this register is used to decide who can run for council and apply for Travel and Study funding. This job requires attendance at all RMS meetings and to consistently update the register in time for the AGM. The role also involves helping the Senior Secretary with administrative tasks and taking minutes in their absence.
The Tutorials Convenor is responsible for running practical skills tutorials (suturing, venepuncture, OSCE and plastering) throughout the year and our exam revision tutorials in December and May. This involves recruiting tutors, sourcing equipment and collecting feedback for certificates. This role offers freedom in terms of what to offer, and any good ideas for new tutorials are always encouraged. This position requires lots of organisation throughout the year and substantial dedication, as many members consider tutorials as the main benefit of their membership.
The Entertainments Convenor is in charge of organising all of the social events throughout the year, such as the White Coat Pub Crawl, ABC social, Burns Supper and pub quizzes. This involves acquiring food and drinks for socials, as well as contacting various pubs and clubs for guestlist and entry. The Burns Supper is the biggest task, entailing organising food, drink, decorations, musicians and speakers, so attention to detail is a must. One of the JPs and the permanent secretaries lend a lot of help with these practicalities.
Publicity is an interactive and time-sensitive job. It requires making a big effort to get to know all members and generally promoting awareness of RMS events, talks and tutorials. This involves creating Facebook events, publicizing them through various groups and doing lecture shoutouts to encourage attendance. The busiest period is Freshers’ Week, involving lots of Facebook posts about our busy schedule, introducing the RMS and assisting with all the freshers’ activities. Publicity is also key for Annual Dinner, Burns Night, tutorials and Conference.
Annual Dinner Convenor
The Annual Dinner Convenor works with the RMS permanent secretaries to organise the Presidents’ Annual Dinner in November. Duties include finding a venue, a ceilidh band and caterers for the event, as well as designing tickets and invitations, coordinating advertising and deciding on decorations for the event. A lot of planning and organisation can be done over the summer. It’s a lot of work but a big team effort, as you get lots of support from the secretaries and the rest of council.
The Computing Convenor is responsible for all RMS computing and web facilities. Tasks include liaising with our network company, keeping the website up to date, managing online payments/membership/Travel and Study applications, ensuring upkeep of the computer room, setting up computing accounts for new members, organising the projector for events and helping speakers with technology. While some computing knowledge is useful, it is not a requirement – you learn as you go along and the work is easy to fit in around other commitments.
Library and Museum
The role of the Library and Museum Convenor primarily involves promoting the Society’s heritage. This also entails maintaining, cataloging and expanding the collection of books in the RMS Rooms. This includes keeping an up-to-date account of library books in the online database. They also manage the artefacts held by the RMS and maintaining our records of these. This role can be done in your own time and, as such, gives lots of time to assist others on council.
The House Convenor is responsible for the general upkeep of the RMS premises. They should regularly inspect the Rooms to identify issues which need addressed and keep in contact with the permanent secretaries. This role involves carrying out repairs and decoration projects, as well as keeping the kitchen stocked and tidy. The House Convenor also takes the annual inventory of RMS property.
The Business Convenor organises the talks for the upcoming year, which happens over the summer in order to design and print the syllabus before September. It’s good to have a diverse range of topics that interest people and also to have talks related to a current module. This position is responsible for looking after speakers at events and arranging gifts for them. It also involves working closely with Publicity to publicise speaker profiles well in advance.