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
- financial advice.
VU has been collecting these fees since 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 HAS SSAF BEEN ALLOCATED TO IN 2022?
- Student Life: Student Life programs and events, Clubs, Societies and Student Volunteer Programs $1.297m
- Student Wellbeing:
- Student Counselling Services $1.26m
- Student Advocacy Services $207k
- Student Welfare Services $414k
- Student Leadership: Student Leadership Programs and Services $96k
- Student Experience Initiative Grants: Student Experience Initiative Grants (approved by a panel made up of student and staff members from the Consultative Committee) $40k
- VUSU: Victoria University Student Union and affiliated student associations (external organisation funding allocation) $469k
- VUPA: Victoria University Postgraduate Association: $70k
- Student Representative Organisation Support: $34k
- VU Sport: Student Sport & Health Services (including Student Facility Grant) $298k
- Student Services: Student Success & Support Programs $858k
- Employability and Success: VU Employ Services $569k
The University will fund internal student services where the allocation is over the anticipated SSAF revenue (e.g. student success and support programs, student media initiatives).
The University takes a formula approach to the allocation of SSAF funds and grants each year, which embodies flexible funding arrangements. This approach provides fixed funds as well as short-term funds to pilot initiatives and/or meet a short-term need. It accommodates both need and demand, allowing for greater flexibility in the delivery of SSAF-funded student services and activities.
This model is centrally governed, managed and administered by Students Portfolio 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 Students Portfolio
- funding to support student organisations
- contingency for unexpected growth in usage and/or emerging needs allocation for services not currently funded by SSAF.
Applications for funding and grants each year are considered alongside feedback from students to ascertain allocation priorities. Feedback is provided through:
- data collection
- engagement and consultation
- feedback from the University community.