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Katia - Getting to Know You

Name: Katia Riley

Job Role: Engagement & Opportunities Manager


What did you do before UCSU? 

I was born in Switzerland and came to the UK in my twenties to improve my English and somehow, never left!

I trained in the Tourism industry but since gained a degree in Psychology with the Open University and QTS in Primary Education with St. Martin’s College.

I have worked in many different places from hotels to the local council, from schools to the tax office and eventually landed here!


Can you tell us a little about you? 

I love spending time out in the fells with my dogs…somehow we never manage to come back dry or clean! Other than that, I enjoy reading, watching telly and, why not, even the occasional knitting. Italian is actually my mother tongue and I can also speak some French and German.


What do you do at UCSU?

I oversee the areas of UCSU that involve activities that students can take part in, which means I have a finger in a lot of pies!  Broadly speaking these fall into the following categories:

Volunteering – both in terms of opportunities that are set up by students for other students to join and in terms of sourcing external organisations to provide our students with valuable volunteering roles.

Groups – developing and supporting student-led societies and clubs across the campuses. These provide opportunities for students to practice sport, share their hobbies with others or further their knowledge in academic areas.

Student Support – when things might not be so great, we want to be here to lend our students a hand by attending official meetings with them or offering advice on appeals, complaints, etc. Passionate about any specific Health & Wellbeing concerns? We will work with you and help you run your campaign.


What do you love most about your job?

I really enjoy working with students - from hearing their ideas to supporting them to make them into reality. There is so much talent within our student body and I am proud to be here to play a little part in helping them to achieve their goals!

I love the way that every day is different from the next and I enjoy the diversity of our campuses and the different blend of people that you can encounter there.