LUU LEADERSHIP RACE: Time to sort out our block grant

Jack Palmer is running to be reelected for Union Affairs Officer, here are his views on LUU’s measly block grant.

In 2015-16, the University of Leeds spent £4,005,000 on ‘Printing, stationary and office expenses’.
In the same year, they gave only £2,525,000 in their grant to the Students’ Union.

Last year, I ran in the Leadership Race with the aim of lobbying the University over how much money the University gives LUU to run its services, which I have been doing this year. We are one of the best Student Unions in the UK, the first of only two Unions rated ‘excellent’ by NUS, and soon we’ll have a brilliant new building to grow into. Yet compared to other Universities, we are given far less funding considering the impact we have on students’ lives and the size of our membership.

For example, the size of our block grant divided roughly by the number of students last year (31,030) comes out at £80 a head towards the ‘student experience’. In comparison, King’s College London Student’s Union, with a much large block grant (£3.6m) and fewer students, (27,290) is receiving as much as £134 per student.

With tuition fees set to rise year on year, our money is soon to become the majority of this University’s income. Last academic year alone the University received over £290 million just from tuition fees and education contracts. LUU’s block grant isn’t even 1% of that figure. Now more than ever, you as students should have a greater say on how their money is spent and I would ask, is LUU 1% of your experience at Leeds?

If the University praises LUU for its charitable work in supporting clubs & societies, mental health, advice, employment and academic representation. If the University recognises our importance to them as a recruitment tool and a hub for the student experience which helps you ‘love your time at Leeds’, then they should increase our funding to support our growth.

In 2018, the LUU block grant is up for negotiation with the University and I want to ensure that our funding is increased to match the University’s values and our ambition as an organisation, to help us meet the increasing demands of students. If you agree with what I believe, then please vote to re-elect Jack Palmer for Union Affairs and I will make your voice heard and lead on campaigning for this change.

Jack Palmer, running to be reelected for Union Affairs Officer.

(Image courtesy of Leeds List)

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