On 11 October 2011, the Australian Parliament passed legislation allowing universities and other higher education providers to charge a fee for student services and amenities of a non-academic nature.
The legislation dictates that the fees collected may be spent by higher education providers on items such as sporting and recreational activities, employment and career advice, child care, supporting student representation and financial advice.
For a full list of SSAF allowable items visit the Department of Education and Training SSAF Guidelines.
VU has been collecting the fees since Semester 1/Term 1, 2012. This page outlines how the Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF) has been used to provide non-academic support services and improved facilities for all students at VU.
What will the SSAF be used for in 2018?
For 2018, VU Finance have estimated SSAF revenue at $4.375 million. This has been allocated to the projects and support services for students as outlined below:
- VUSU and student associations: $0.38m
- Student Life, clubs, grants and minor amenity works: $1.7m
- VU Sport and Health services: $0.285m
- Student Wellbeing and Support Services: $1.75m
- Contingency funding $0.24m.
As the year progresses, more information around the allocation of SSAF will become available and published on this page.
2017 SSAF benefits to students and Student Experience Initiative Grant projects
In 2017, funds from SSAF went toward projects and benefits such as the support of university teams in various competitions endorsed by the Australian University of Sport, the production of the Student Diary, the provision of professional counselling services, and the refurbishment of the parenting room at Footscray Park campus. Read the 2017 Summary of SSAF Priorities, Grants and Benefits to Students.
2016 SSAF benefits to students and Student Experience Initiative Grant projects
In 2016, funds from SSAF went toward projects and benefits such as the refurbishment of the stadium courts on the Footscray Park campus, a full calendar of student life events (including orientation activities for Semester 1 and 2), the Student Leadership program, advocacy services, and the production of the student magazine Hyde. Read the 2016 Summary of SSAF Priorities, Grants and Benefits to Students.
The University takes a formula approach to the allocation of SSAF funds and grants each year, which embodies flexible funding arrangements to ensure some fixed funds as well as the ability to access short-term funds to pilot initiatives and/or meet a short-term need. This approach accommodates both need and demand at the same time, allowing for greater flexibility in the delivery of SSAF-funded student services and activities.
This model is centrally governed, managed and administered by Student Services on behalf of the University. It includes:
- base allocation funding for all services currently approved for SSAF; the amount related to activity/service based costings (the allocation and funding value reviewed annually via Funding Applications and in line with University budget forecasts and business planning)
- an allocation for initiatives grants
- capital allowance for the improvement of student amenities by Student Services
- funding to support student organisations; and
- contingency for unexpected growth in usage and/or emerging needs allocation for services not currently funded by SSAF.
The review of applications for funding and grants each year takes into consideration feedback from students provided through data collection, engagement and consultation as well as feedback from the University community, to ascertain the needs and demands for allocation priorities each year.
Feedback & questions
Your input on how you want to see your SSAF allocated is vital to this process. To provide feedback, please speak to the Victoria University Student Union (VUSU) or complete the online SSAF feedback form.
Search the ASKVU knowledge base to find answers or ask a question.
Each year we survey students about the services and support brought to you by SSAF. In 2017 we distributed the survey to 24,093 students and received 1,044 (4.3%) responses.
Student feedback has contributed to improving the student experience. For example, past survey results indicated that students wanted better food and drink options on campus. VU took this on board by upgrading equipment in student kitchens across the Victorian campuses and refurbished the kitchen in Building M, Footscray Park. There is an increasing range of food and drink retailers on or near all campuses.
Student feedback also indicated a lack of awareness around the careers and employability services available to them. VU's new Learning Hubs offer workshops, drop-in sessions and advice on careers and employability, as well as general academic support. The Learning Hubs are engaging in an awareness campaign to ensure students are familiar with the available services.