The RMS AGM takes place every year in April and a new council is elected to run 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 a number of convenors, each tasks with managing different aspects of the society’s affairs.
Elections are conducted using the PR-STV system where members can vote for multiple candidates for each position by ranking candidates in order of preference. CGP Grey has an excellent Youtube video explaining how the system works.
To be eligible to run for a position on the council, candidates must be members of the RMS and have attended at least 5 ordinary business meetings of the society. Ordinary business meetings include our Tuesday talks and tutorials and the RMS conference. End of semester 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 in the office in Potterrow. 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 President must have previously held a council position and candidates for Senior President must have previously been a Junior President or Senior Secretary.
Description of roles
The Senior President (SP) has numerous responsibilities. The SP chairs the Society’s events; from the Presidents’ Annual Dinner, to the fortnightly talks, to the Conference, to Burns Supper. The SP also chairs the monthly council meetings. The SP oversees the running of the RMS by guiding the other council members, offering support, and ensuring 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 promote their services, or organise joint events – for example, the RMS assists with Open Days, Post Offer Visit Days, and gives an insight into medical school life to secondary school students. The SP reports twice a Session to the RMS Trust – sharing progress. The SP has also historically assisted with the Travel and Study interviews. Above all, the SP acts as an ambassador for the RMS both during and outwith RMS events.
Junior President 1
As junior president 1 you have a lot of responsibility in making sure the society runs well. You are a great support to the president and select certain other council positions for which you are a key source of information and advice. You will select your main responsibility at the beginning of the year which is often to organise the RMS annual student conference. This a huge task but is greatly rewarding. As with any other council member you are expected to attend all RMS event and help with medical school ran events where possible.
Junior President 2
Each JP has an area of interest and requires to provide help to other council members. JP2’s interest this year regarded academia. As a result, JP2 had to help the tutorial’s convenor in setting up revision and clinical skills tutorials. It also involved organising focus groups for Elsevier and obtaining sponsorship for the conference. In addition, the RMS is affiliated with Leiden University in the Netherlands. Consequently, JP2 was required to organise this exchange along with JP3 (head of social events). Also responsibility for all members: Be available every Tuesday evening to help out at talks and socials; the need to help out with tasks for the RMS annual dinner and RMS conference; supervision duty for PROW on a Saturday evening.
Junior President 3
As the junior president leading Freshers week, this role required A LOT OF summer planning; the creation of a welcome week survival guide requires creativity and artistic flare. Discussions with heads of first year to discuss where in the timetable the Freshers fair and sports/societies fair can be placed requires time planning and personable character. You will also be required to delegate with medical defence companies and book companies about sponsorship for welcome week, and whether they wish advertisement in the survival guide.
Keeping very organised during welcome week is crucial, to make everything run smoothly.
Overseeing entertainments, requires delegation with Entertainments Convenor, Annual Dinner Convenor and Publicity Convenor and to make sure everything runs smoothly and the word is spread/tickets sold sufficiently.
Overall, as Junior President, you have more loyalty and responsibility to the RMS – you are required to take charge of problems more and show guidance to the positions underneath you.
As Senior Secretary of the RMS this year I have been responsible for writing the minutes of the monthly meetings of the RMS council. This involves contacting council members for their agenda. The Senior Secretary role is also in charge of AGM sign ups, ensuring that all members are aware of the positions and who can run to be on council. It is important in this role to have a goo relationship with our permanent secretaries who do so much for the society. The Senior Secretary is also in charge of organising the supervision rota for Saturday nights. This role is unique in that it is able to become involved in helping with every other role on council which means that you get to see and have as active a role in the society as you wish.
As Junior Secretary this year I have been taking attendance for all RMS meetings. This includes lectures, tutorials and conference. At the end of the year, I collate all the information into a register, which is used to decide who can run for council next year and apply for travel and study fund. This job requires you to be there for all RMS meetings and to consistently update the register in time for the annual general meeting. However it is relatively undemanding in other aspects. Part of the job also involves helping the senior secretary and taking minutes in their absence.
Running tutorials isn’t the easiest job on council, but it’s definitely one of the most rewarding! As tutorial Convenor you are responsible for running our practical tutorials (including surgical skills and venepuncture) throughout the semester and our exam tutorials in November and May, with the help of a junior president. This role really offers a lot of freedom in teRMS of what to offer, and any good ideas for new tutorials to run will definitely be encouraged by council! Overall, this role requires a lot of organisation throughout the year and requires a lot of dedication, as many of our members consider our tutorials as an important part of their membership.
Entertainments convenor is in charge of organising all of the socials throughout the year such as the pub crawl, burns supper and pub quizzes. This involves having to get all of the alcohol and mixers for socials as well as contacting various pubs and clubs for guestlist and entry. Burns supper is the biggest task as you have to organise food, drink, decorations, chairs etc. Entertainments also tidies up after socials with the help of the rest of the committee. One of the JPs lends a lot of help with this side of the RMS.
The role of publicity convener is an extremely interactive and sometimes demanding job. It involves making a big effort to get to know all the members, and generally promoting awareness of the RMS events, talks and tutorials. Essentially, the main jobs are creating events on Facebook and publicizing them through various pages, doing lecture shoutouts or quick presentations to get people interested (particularly for the annual dinner) and being present at all of our events in order to encourage students to attend more. The busiest periods are probably Fresher’s week, when posting on Facebook far in advanced about our busy schedule is vital. During Welcome week, publicity convener is also heavily involved with giving an introduction to the RMS and being on hand to help in all the Freshers’ activities. Other times of the year when publicity is key is for the Annual Dinner, Burns’ night, exam tutorials and the annual conference. Overall it is a really rewarding job being the spokesperson for the RMS, and has been well worth the complaints of excessive Facebook notifications.
Annual Dinner Convenor
As Annual Dinner Convener you would work with Elizabeth and Enid (our RMS permanent secretaries) to organise the Presidents’ Annual Dinner. In this position duties would include finding a venue, a ceilidh band and caterers for the event as well as designing tickets and invitations, advertising and coming up with ideas for decorations or themes for the event. A lot of the planning and organisation can be done in advance at the end of this term and over the summer. It sounds like a lot of work but it’s a team effort as you will get lots of support from the secretaries as well as from the rest of council!
The computer convenor is responsible for all of the computing and web facilities of the RMS. Tasks include: Keeping the website up to date with relevant information Looking after online payments, membership applications and travel and study applications Ensuring upkeep of the computer room and maintenance of the computing facilities Setting up computing and printing accounts for all new members Setting up the computer and project for RMS talks and helping the speaker get their presentation working While some computing knowledge is useful, it is not a requirement. There is a great team that helps with the RMS computing network and the RMS website runs on a (slightly modified) WordPress installation (SSC projects site are wordpress based), so keeping the site up-to-date is fairly straight forward. The computing convenor works very closely with all of council and develops a good overview of all aspects of the society. The main busy time of the year is the beginning of semester 1 when a large cohort of new members need computing accounts. The rest of the work is very easy to fit in around other commitments.
Library and Museum
I have been involved in cataloguing the books and tracking down a missing book, working closely with Sophia, Mat and Elizabeth and Enid. I have been able to do this in my own time as well as attending regular events and meetings.
The role of the library convenor primarily involves looking after, cataloging and trying to expand the collection of medical books held in the RMS rooms. Our work this year has mainly involved creating an up-to-date account of the all the books we hold, working closely with the Computer Covenor to make an online database. This year I have also contacted several medical journals to try and gain free resources for our members to use. This role is definitely less labour intensive than some of the other positions. As such, a big part of the role is also providing assistance to others on council whenever they are organising big events or socials.
The house convenor is responsible for the general upkeep of the RMS premises. They should regularly inspect the premises to identify issues which need addressed, and should keep in contact with the permanent secretaries. The house convenor is responsible for carrying out the annual inventory of RMS property.
Business convened organizes all the lectures and syllabuses for the year. This means a lot of work throughout all of summer trying to find and confirm speakers in advance to have the syllabus ready for freshers, so make sure your holidays aren’t *too* busy! It’s good to have a diverse range of topics and to also also have talk related to a module which a current year group is studying. Effective communication with the entertainments convener, to ensure there are clashes between socials and events, and the publicity convener to make sure adequate publicity has been given to the event is needed. It’s also RMS tradition to have dinner with the speakers before the talk so it’s your role to invite them, organize chefs’ (‘council members’) and wine for the evening!
You’ll also have the task of designing the layout of the syllabus for the next session, and then when all the dates and speakers have been finalized you will need to get the syllabus printed. I went to a lot of the talks and events in first year so was really keen to get involved in second year. Business was a really good job to have as you get to see the diverse range of fields there and pick topics which you feel would interest people after liaising with the rest of the council. You’re also one of the first points of contact with the speakers which means you get to know them a bit. Although it’s a lot of organization during the summer, you’ve done most of your job by fresher meaning you can just chill a bit and help out a bit with council in general after!