Recruiting and Universities

Discussion in 'Army Reserve' started by Emkay, May 19, 2008.

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  1. My unit is looking to boost numbers and as a final year student I offered to sound out my local university about the possibility of recruiting on campus during the freshers fair this September. Students can make good recruits because they have so much free time.

    I went in to see the union and the member of staff who I spoke to was less then welcoming. I was quoted stupid money (four figures) to have a stand on campus and when I asked about alternative options they said that they wanted £750 per day to allow us access to campus just to hand out leaflets. Similar sky-high figures were quoted to put up posters or advertise in student newspapers.

    To cap it all I was told that the last TA unit who had a stand at the freshers fair ended up attracting a large protest from the anti-war mob to the point that it defeated the object of the whole exercise. The union said that they were powerless to stop 'peaceful protest' at the freshers fair (not that they seemed bothered).

    Anyone else got experience of recruiting on or around a university campus? I remember reading something about an OTC who got banned from a campus by the anti-war lot and decided to park a Land Rover just outside the uni grounds and recruit students on the way in and out. The union were furious but couldn't do anything because they weren't actually on campus.
  2. I remember reading something about an OTC who got banned from a campus by the anti-war lot and decided to park a Land Rover just outside the uni grounds and recruit students on the way in and out. The union were furious but couldn't do anything because they weren't actually on campus.

    I think you've answered your own question.
  3. Sympathetic_Reaction

    Sympathetic_Reaction LE Book Reviewer

    Recruiting at Universities is a complicated situation due to the SU being mainly run by left wing nuts and the SU controls the campus (from a political point of view)

    With the landrover on the road, basically remember 2 things:

    1. public property is public, you can stand on the road and hand out leaflets, similar with the landrover in a public car park. This includes any public rights of way across campus (so check the OS map).

    2. politically it may not be a great idea as you do get the anti-war nuts etc who cause a fuss.

    One way I would suggest recruiting is by talking to those about to leave the UOTC...I don't think our OTC was approached by any TA unit to ask if the final years people wanted to join them when they left. Might be a simple way to get the numbers up, and they are already 'trained'.

    If you do try to recruit from the University do try to chekc with the local OTC (if there is one) as it doesn't look great if you start poaching their recruits at the same event.

  4. Certain Universities in the North East are very receptive to Regular/TA recruiting. My Uni has a very good relationship with the local Careers Office and the Reserve Forces who turn up frequently to provide short 'leadership' style courses. The RM(R) and RNR are frequent visitors.

    I had a quick chat with the local Bn recruiters who were pitched up smack bang in the middle of the campus last month. They feel that they are warmly welcomed by staff and students alike. They pointed out that their biggest challenge was convincing young students that soldiers didn't spend everyday of their career in Iraq/Afghanistan.

    I think that the stereotypical image of the lefty student held by some squaddies is about as credible and lacking in imagination as the one held by some students that all squaddies are thick. There's a young TA Officer on my course who is considering a regular career. He's a bit of a gobsh*te, but seems to be a genuinely decent bloke. Comes over very much as the sort to get stuck into anything.
  5. Recruiting for the TA and the OTC seems to have gone the same way as Regular recruiting. The very presence of military uniforms tends to stir up the anti-war lot, for some reason they find "voluntary" service in the forces as abhorrent! In fact they are demonstrating against the very democratic right we have in volunteer soldiering that safeguards their rights to demonstrate! Nobody is forced into uniform anymore, we are providing an alternative way to spend your spare time, In the present climate of course any prosective TA recruit is made aware of their liabilities should the brown envelopes start to arrive, they can go if they wish or intimate otherwise. As for the OTC I can't see why Uni unions are so against this. All students can't be into ethnic music classes or the dream catcher workshop etc. etc.

    Just last weekend I had a chat with some of the guys from 7 Scots recruiting in Aberdeen. Aberdeen City Council had given them a patch at the rear of the shopping centre. very few people were around but at the front various "contemporary" groups such a street drumming group and a very surreal group dressed as red indians chanting were occupying prime spots and Union Street was heaving. Where was General Custer when you need him!

    You get the impression that we are to be despised and hidden away this is lessening youngsters choices.
  6. You're being over dramatic mate. Think about it for a minute. The council needs to bring commerce to the city so it puts on little shows to get the visitors in, in order that they will spend money and keep commercial interests alive. It's nothing to do with ignoring squaddies and hiding them away. Believe me, if you were capable of generating money for them, you'd have had centre stage.
  7. With regards to extortionate costs, thats because as SUs they need to bring in as much income as possible so they have more money to spend on students, therefore if your an external organisation the asking price will be the same regardless of who you are (big oil firm or small company).

    With regard to a union being powerless to stop "peaceful protest", its true they are and if those protesting are their members then it is even more unlikely they will seem to do anything about it. The problem is the Anti War lobby have as much 'rights' to their views as any others but it is much easier for a small noisey minority to draw attention to that cause than it is for supporters of the armed forces to make their point in that kind of environment.

    With regard to all students being seen as "Lefties" I think the same issue is around; they aren't the majority they are just the noisiest. In all honesty I think the majority are either apathetic or quite content with the way things are. Thankfully when one London Uni Union caused the furore back in March by opposing military recruitment on campus, many of the other london unions came out in support of the freedom of choice for their students and support at least for the student military organisations.

    a bit of devils advocate maybe but I only recently stopped the student politics so understand that its not all as black and white as we'd like.
  8. Point Taken! I should'nt be to quick to jump to conclusions.
  9. msr

    msr LE

  10. Glad Ive found this thread, Ive suggested recruiting at our fresher's fair in September too; the SU are abit weak willed but Im sure they wont be totally opposed to having the TA recruit on campus. As for your four figure quotation, you should have pitched it to them that you were doing them a favour by introducing the student body to A) something other than alcohol/drugs B) abit of self discipline and C) personal pride....its shocking the amount of mongs that get into university! Anyhoo, will bare in mind whats been written here if suggesting this in the future.
  11. The problem isn't the uni, it is the union which is run by left-wing wannabe politicans.
  12. my uni loved it but they are a westcountry mob. Best bet if u cant get the su to agree have you tried the campus services because they own the property contracts so in effect you go above the su you could probably distribute fliers etc. but just not have a stall? Just a thought?
  13. I was on the recruiting team for my unit and we recruited less than sucessfully for summer challegne 2007 (no real interest from them in the TA) we were made to feel very welcome tho but this was before the ban on recruiting at schools and such.

    Most people we did recruit went to summer challenge for the £1500 tax free they would get for doing the seven week training and then quit the TA. Are you even allowed to recruit in uni's?

    My PSI gave me the impression it wasnt.

    I would not waste your time trying mate but gd luck if you get the green light.
  14. Word of mouth and business cards with contact details on works well, using TA/ex TA/ex reg people already studying or working in the uni. Try local regimental associations out for senior contacts in uni management who may be able to help bypass disinterested/anti types who are holding you up.

    Have an event around the start of the academic year, best one I saw was a curry night at the TAC with all the goodies set up, in this case a CP, OP and a fire trench in a vehicle inspection bay, cam cream, crackling radios, the lot. If you are out of town you need to lay on transport, and try and get prospectives to commit to turning up. Don't expect hundreds to turn up either but focus on ensuring those who do, have a great time and don't get left standing around, and ensure your serial whingers are kept off base or are intensively briefed.

    If you have contacts in the Uni you may be able to post on dept noticeboards & websites for free. A cynic might suggest your efforts are best expended in depts like science, engineering and business studies rather than arts and humanities.

    To avoid anti war protestors at a freshers fair, consider not having a stand just get a few people to get around on foot leafletting, this means there is no focus for protest. Don't forget though, if there is a stand and accompanying protest, there's no such thing as bad publicity. I don't buy the argument that this would be counter productive. Would an anti war protest have stopped you joining the army? thought not.

  15. I think that might have been Cambridge UOTC, back in 1999 (before my time). I presume the anti-war lot would have been annoyed about Kosovo at that point. Lucky them, as sson as they get donw ith one war another one comes along to give meaning to their otherwise boring lives.