Call for volunteers

Call for Student Volunteers for the ASAUK 2018 Conference (11-13 September 2018, University of Birmingham)

This September the University of Birmingham is hosting the biennial African Studies Association of the United Kingdom (ASAUK) conference. We need your help! Opportunities are now open for students to join in the Conference for free by volunteering their time and representing the University and the ASAUK as Student Ambassadors.

The ASAUK was founded in 1963 and is the national subject association for Africanists within the academic community. It’s a scholarly organization with a membership that includes academics, students, independent researchers, professionals and many others with an interest in Africa, and is commited to strengthening links between UK and African institutions, and between scholars in Africa and the UK.

The ASAUK 2016 conference at the University of Cambridge attracted over 650 delegates from different academic disciplines and parts of the world. With 202 panels, the programme was extraordinarily rich and varied and resulted in engaged collaboration across the different disciplines that encompass the study of Africa.

With over 1000 registrations on the organising system, 50+ streams covering a wide range of topics, many standalone panels, roundtables, film presentations, and book launches, the Conference is set to be one of the most exciting and dynamic ASAUK conferences so far.

The keynote address, given by Kenyan and South African public intellectual Professor Grace Musila from Stellenbosch University, is entitled “Makhumalo’s Spaza Shop || Lena Moi’s Dance” and will set the life stories of South Africa’s Gertrude Sizakele ‘MaKhumalo’ Zuma and Kenya’ Helena ‘Lena’ Tungo Moi in conversation. (

We want your talents, creativity and insights to help make ASAUK 2018 the greatest event it can possibly be.

Student Ambassadors will play a crucial role in ensuring the success of ASAUK 2018. They are the people that will help everyone, from welcoming the delegates as they register to providing local advice. We are looking for a number of Student Ambassadors to help our Conference delegates with all aspects of their experience during their time at the University. In addition, we are looking for three students to act as Marketing and Communication; they will cover the Conference to be published on the ASAUK website.

Being a Student Ambassador is an excellent opportunity to meet, interact and network with leading academics and students from all over the globe with an interest in Africa. You will be given a free pass to attent the Conference during the hours that you are not volunteering. If you’re interested in any aspect of research on Africa, attending the Conference is an excellent opportunity to shape and develop your research, and will allow networking opportunities with academics and students who share your interests.


  • The Student Ambassadors will work one of the three conference days for eight hours; attend a two hour briefing before the Conference; provide two and a half hours of support prior to the Event, to assist the conference team in preparing the Conference bags and badges.

Work during the conference will include:

  • Registration duties (including setting up, preparing conference bags, and helping delegates register)
  • Technical assistance for speakers and delegates
  • Provide directions to various locations on campus
  • Answer conference delegate queries and help them solve problems, in a professional and friendly manner
  • Those selected as Student Marketing and Communications Ambassadors will live tweet seminars, the keynote lecture, workshops, film screenings etc. and will write a 700 word blog about their experience of the ASAUK 2018 conference


  • No previous experience necessary
  • Students who wish to volunteer as marketing and communications ambassadors, are required to have excellent written communication skills, including the ability to write clearly and concisely for a range of audiences, both academic and non-academic, using grammatically accurate written English


  • Free registration for the full conference (including the days you will not be required to work) – worth £125
  • Opportunities to meet, listen, learn and engage with world-class academics
  • Excellent work experience for your CV; the Conference Coordinator will provide references if requested

Application procedure

Please register your interest by emailing a one page CV and short statement explaining why you would like to attend the ASAUK 2018 conference (max. 500 words) to

Those who would like to volunteer as marketing and communications ambassadors and have previous experience in creative writing, maintaining blogs or social media are encouraged to incluse these examples.

Important dates

 Application Due Date: 20 July 2018

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