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Stanley Jenkins: an obituary

Thursday 28 April 2016 NUS News

This week former NUS President Stanley Jenkins sadly died. At the age of 95, Major Stanley was the oldest surviving National President, serving in office between 1949 and 1951.

Stanley was also famously the only president elected from a technical college. Most recently Stanley addressed delegates at National Conference in 2012 for NUS’ 90th anniversary.

Reacting to the news of the passing of Stanley Jenkins, NUS National President Megan Dunn said:

“It was with great sadness that this week we learned of the death of former president Stanley Jenkins. Stanley was a tour de force, whose passion for the movement and democracy never waned from his student days onward. His accomplishments are many – despite having been president at an incredibly challenging time for national and international politics in the post-war years. Every student officer in the country should read about Stanley’s incredible journey to become president of NUS and how he represented students in the United Kingdom and all across the world during his terms. We are all inspired and hugely proud of everything Stanley achieved during his lifetime for students and thank him for his timeless service and dedication.”

Former NUS President Liam Burns (2011-2013) said:

“I had the great honour of welcoming Stanley Jenkins to National Conference in 2012 for NUS’ 90th anniversary. At that time Stanley, 91, spoke at length and with such great passion for NUS. His stories from his time in the student movement were simply fascinating and awe inspiring – it was a great honour to hear Stanley recall being the first paid sabbatical officer in the UK, meeting Che Guevara on the international student stage, work and sit with other future world leaders and being invited to Downing Street having completely changed the way NUS was seen by government and politicians. Stanley will be sorely missed by his family and friends in the student movement and I am hugely proud to have had the chance to meet him.”

NUS Chief Executive Simon Blake, and former Chief Executive Matt Hyde said:

“Stanley Jenkins held a legendary status in the student movement. Throughout his whole life he dedicated his time and energy to being a true friend of NUS– an organisation that he attributed to giving him life chances that he never expected to have had. He was held in incredibly high esteem by his successors as National President and in admiration by everyone who had the opportunity to meet him and hear his stories from his time in the student movement. As staff in the student movement, both past and present, we all owe Stanley a great debt of gratitude for his devotion to a cause he believed in and fought for all his life and he will be sorely missed by all in NUS and beyond.”

Stanley Jenkins was elected as National President in 1949, from University College Cardiff and during his terms served the international student movement as Vice President. 

You can view an interview with Stanley Jenkins that was produced for NUS’ 90th anniversary below, and watch his address to National Conference in 2012 here.

Stanley’s story and time as National President is also documented here.

Stanley is succeeded as the longest-living national president by Fred Jarvis who served from 1952 to 1954..