The General Council fee has been abolished for students graduating in 2018 and all subsequent years. It will be funded by the pay withheld from staff who took part in the recent strike action over pensions.
Chief Operating Officer of the University of Glasgow David Duncan said that students who have already paid “don’t have to do anything, we will sort that out over the next two or three weeks.”
Arrangements are being put in place to stop charging the General Council fee from noon on 16 May. Those have already paid will receive a full refund. Students will be contacted directly via their student email account to advise on the refund process.
David Duncan outlined in a social media video how the withheld funds, amounting to approximately £800k, will be spent.
Around £100k will go towards mental health activities for the University, and a similar sum is expected to go towards the Hardship Fund. Additional money will go towards supporting clubs and societies on campus.
The funds will also create scholarships for students coming from low-income backgrounds, asylum seekers and refugees.
The University of Glasgow Senior Management Group consulted with the Student Experience committee, which is co-chaired by Students’ Representative Council (SRC) President Kate Powell, before making the final decision.
Kate Powell stated: “UCU [University & College Union] wanted the money from the funds to be spent on the student experience so we’ve identified priorities that will make such a difference to the student experience.
“The SRC is really happy with the areas that have been proposed. We’re really happy to see the General Council fee abolished. We also think that investing in financial support for students and also clubs and societies is something we’ve really wanted to see for a while.
“Also the investment in mental health following on from the Mental Health Action Plan we feel will affect students by taking the strain off the counselling service.”