Your Academic Year Wrapped 22/23

Here’s a recap of what your Student Officers and the SU have worked on this academic year to represent you and improve your experience at Queen’s.

Health and Wellbeing

  • The Pantry, Your free Refill Station opened for students to obtain essential food items in February. To date, The Pantry has seen 6,000 student visits.    
  • During Semester One we distributed over 4,800 free breakfasts in the SU and then in Semester Two we also provided Free Breakfasts for two weeks across three locations on Campus, including in the SU Lounge
  • We distributed 1,800 Free Meals, in partnership with the University in May during the examination period
  • We have continued our partnership with the Belfast Trust to deliver Free Sexual Health Clinics every Monday and Tuesday during the academic year, with a Doctor and Nurse on-site
  • As part of #QUBeWell week, several events were held, such as Chatty Chairs featuring the Wellbeing Wheel, The Gratitude Wall, and the Sensory Space and Zen Den
  • The SU have supported the SOS bus pilot initiative, in conjunction with the University,. The SOS Bus hosted a pop up every Tuesday evening in the foyer of the McClay library to provide out of hours support for students


  • We successfully lobbied the University and recieved:
    • Cost-of-Living Payment for students, which was distributed at the end of January
    • Increased funding into student financial support funds of £600k
    • Reduced disciplinary fines
    • Removal graduation and library fees for the year
  • Partnered with White Ribbon NI to sign their charter and develop a 3-year action plan on challenging violence against women and girls.
  • Worked with the University to implement a Student Guarantor Scheme.  The Scheme has been approved and will launch for students in the next academic year
  • We have awarded over £5,500 from the Parents’ and Carers’ Support Fund.
  • Joined UCU at the picket line during staff strikes over pay, pensions and working conditions, and encouraged students to join too
  • Launched a Student Campaign Group for students to get involved in
  • Continued to meet with Course, School and Faculty Reps who represent you, discussing important academic issues like: assessment and feedback; lecture recording; and engagement
  • Lobbied University leaders to extend Covid-era thesis only fee-waivers and stiped extensions for PhD candidates. In response, the University conducted a review as part of their Cost-of-Living Crisis Working Group and has agreed to extend its thesis only fee-wavers to the 2021 PGR cohort

SU Advice

  • We advised over 2,000 students on a total of 4,216 issues
  • Helped students unlock over £90K of funding based on the advice we provided
  • So far, over 600 students have registered to Blackbullion, the free digital financial wellbeing platform for all Queen’s students
  • Resumed the three weekly drop-in advice sessions where students can call in to get free advice without an appointment

QUB RAG (Raise and Give)

  • To date, QUB RAG has raised over £9,000 for it’s 22/23 charities, Homeplus NI and Pure Mental.
  • Recent events include collaborations with the Pride Society, English Society, a raffle at the PPE formal, a night with Queen’s Symphony Orchestra, and dRAG.
  • The official RAG Cocktail launched in the Union Bar and is available for purchase.

SU Clubs and Societies

  • Our annual Freshers’ Fair took place in the new Mandela Hall, with 15,000 students attending. We hosted a Refreshers’ Fair which took place in the Mandela Hall, with 2,500 students attending.
  • We provided £40,000 of funding to Societies
  • We helped allocate more than £100,000 of funding to Sporting Clubs
  • 11 Clubs & Societies were awarded SU Fund It grants of £500, after submitting successful applications and pitching to a panel of judges.
  • Our Mini-Conference, “Leadership in Sport” took place in Mandela Hall
  • We have seen a record breaking number of Society Memberships this year! SU Clubs and Societies memberships currently total 15,147 (Societies: 12,411; Sporting Clubs: 2,736).
  • Student Council have ratified 25 new SU Clubs and Societies

SU Enterprise

  • This year, our student businesses have secured almost £162k collectively from internal and external funding.
  • This year’s Dragon’s Den competition saw a massive £25,000 of funding to students to support their new businesses. The main winners were:
    • Maebh Reynolds (GOPLUGABLE) who won £10k
    • Brogán Brady & Conleth Mallon (INSTYL) who won £5k
    • Isaac Gibson (FROM MY PERSPECTIVE) who won £5k
  • 24 students completed the InnovateHer Programme and graduated at a celebration event in the Baker McKenzie offices in Belfast City Centre
  • We ran our What’s the Big Idea? Competition where 11 students were recipients of awards, find out more here
  • SU Co-Work (the student co-working space in the SU) is currently being revamped and is open for students to use for their businesses.

SU Volunteer

  • We held a Volunteering and Wellbeing Fair that was attended by 700+ students
  • We are working in partnership with 16 Homework Clubs. 135 students applied to volunteer with Homework Clubs, supporting over 400 children and young people.
  • 402 students have registered for the Handy Helpers programme to date in 2022/23.  5 community regeneration projects have been completed to date including a Litter Pick with residents and QUB Sustainability, Community Gardening at Lennoxvale Tree Nursery, and support to plant around 580 native saplings in Malone Playing Fields as part of One Million Trees Project.
  • Jump In – 24 activities have been held to support students in accessing and progressing their volunteering journey. 

SU Voice

  • Referendums on the following issues were approved by the Council and subsequently put to the membership of the SU through all-student votes:
    • QUB Should Pay It’s Fair Share towards Students’ Cost of Survival – 1,872 students voted in this Referendum, with 98% of voters supporting the proposal.
    • Oppose Increases in Student Tuition and Accommodation Fees – 1,754 students voted in this Referendum, with 96.2% of voters supporting the proposal.
    • QUB Should Invest its Substantial Financial Assets in Student-Owned Co-Operatives – 1,652 students voted in this Referendum, with 95.2% of voters supporting the proposal.
  • SU Elections for next year’s Student Officers and Reps saw a record high of 5,386 voters and 5,000 total votes across all roles
  • We held 2 all-student votes
  • We held 6 Student Council Meetings, 2 Special Students’ Council Meetings and 19 EMC meetings

Union Bar

  • 193,067 pints sold this year (which equates to 731 showers!)
  • 13,284 pizzas sold this year! The most popular flavours were the classic and the meat feast. Suprisingly Ham & Pineapple was not the least popular (3rd from last in popularity)

Union Shop

  • We introduced an initiative to reduce wastage and help with with the Cost of Living impact – every Friday we supply students in accommodation with any food that needs used in the coming days.
  • We opened our doors in sept with the first plant based Barista coffee machine on the island of Ireland, serving all the usual coffee options with a milk alternative.
  • We listened to student feedback and relooked at our meal deal offering as well as introduced lots of new deals for our students like our famous £3.50 curry night

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