Money

Survey Suggests How Students Want $5.6M SSAF Fund Distributed

The results of the ANU operated SSAF survey has highlighted ANU students’ desire for “sporting or other recreational” activities to receive a larger slice of the SSAF pie. The promotion of student health and welfare came second in the survey, while the provision of food and drink to students rounded out the top 3.

Student debating received the least support from the 771 students who completed the survey, polling just below the assistance in the provision of insurance for students against personal accidents. The online survey provided students with the opportunity to decide how they wanted a hypothetical pool of $100 to be split between the 19 provided categories.

Despite the recent student accommodation problems that have plagued many students currently living in Fenner, and Burton and Garran Hall, students placed “helping students secure accommodation” as their fifth preference, just above available student legal services.

In stark contrast to the student support for sporting activities at ANU, the survey revealed that support for student art and artistic activities ranked a lowly 14th, just below the promotion of student media and the provision of more care to the children of students.

In 2018, the SSAF fund amounted to an astonishing $5,597,343. Almost 63% of this fund was allocated to ANUSA and PARSA who received $1,997,923 and $1,521,484 respectively.

The Division of Student Life (DSL) was the third largest beneficiary of SSAF funding, receiving $642,195 (11.5%) in 2018.

ANU Sport was the fourth largest recipient, receiving $624,061 (11%) of the collective fund.

The two student media outlets, Woroni and ANU Observer, acquired a significantly smaller portion, collectively receiving $211,682 from the fund (3.78%).

Executive Officer to the Pro Vice Chancellor for University Experience, Dr. Luby Simson, stated that “This year’s survey was a pilot for the development of a more comprehensive survey for 2020 funding priorities,” but stated that “as only 771 students responded (4% of student population) it will be important for [the University] to use this data as a potential trend, but be aware of the need to get more respondents”.

Figure: Survey results when students were asked: “If you had $100, what categories would you fund?”