Funding for student associations no given

The Council of Australian Postgraduate Associations (CAPA) invites you to participate in an online survey as part of an awareness campaign regarding the funding of postgraduate student associations. The campaign follows a statement by Minister for Education, Christopher Pyne who just one week into his role declared that one of his top priorities was the removal of the Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF).

The SSAF was introduced in 2011 by the then Labor government. The fee caters for student services and amenities of a non-academic nature, such as recreational activities as well as student advocacy and advice on a variety of issues. Also GUPSA is funded through the SSAF. In fact, the SSAF enabled GUPSA to – after several years of involuntary hibernation – develop into the thriving community it is today.

Prime Minister Tony Abbot was quick to play down Christopher Pyne’s remarkable revelation so it would appear that there’s currently no reason to assume that the SSAF is under threat. The reality is however that politicians work in mysterious ways. Should the government ever decide to scrap the SSAF, the implications for GUPSA and our sister organisations could be devastating. It’s therefore important to stay vigilant and remain conscious of the fact that funding is not always a given.

CAPA is lobbying in Canberra on our behalf to convince our elected representatives that the SSAF is essential to a positive postgraduate student experience. The focus is on the senate as they have the power to block and amend legislation passed by parliament. In order to be as effective as possible, CAPA needs facts and figures. Hence, the survey.

As your president, I fully endorse CAPA’s campaign. Please click here and take a few minutes to complete the questions so that together we can continue to connect the future!

Should you have any questions or comment, don’t hesitate to contact me.


Niels Kraaier
GUPSA President