officer blog


sophie atherton

campaigns & democracy

we own this

At uea(su), we run many of the campus services and enterprises that you use every day. UNIO, shop(su), Scholar's, bar(su) and the LCR are all run by your SU. Our commercial operations are run as social enterprises – run by students, for students and the profit goes back into services for you. We're really proud of our ethical outlook, paying all our student staff a living wage, selling sanitary products tax-free and selling only Fairtrade tea and coffee in UNIO.  

In this blog, I wanted to detail how the commercial side of uea(su) works, so that you know exactly where the money you spend in the bars, LCR or shop goes. After all – you own it. 

In terms of funding, uea(su) get just £31.69 of your tuition fee payment – that's the lowest of any mainstream English university. In 2016/17 just 26% of our funding was provided by the university and the remaining 74% came from profit made on our commercial services. 

You may have seen the poster in Union House detailing how our income is made and where it goes. We've broken it down into proportions, splitting our overall spending into a percentage of each pound that you've spent. 

Out of every pound you spent in our enterprises in 2016/17: 

  • 21p went on student leadership and campaigns - supporting your su officers and running campaigns on student issues that matter to you. 

  • 19p was used to support the running of Union House - including running services such as UNIO and the LCR, as well as paying all our student staff the living wage. 

  • 18p went on the student advice and housing unit – including funding Homerun, our housing service that allows you to avoid unaffordable estate agent fees. 

  • 24p of the pound was allocated for student societies, student media and enterprise – supporting the opportunities that really allow you to make friends, develop skills and have new experiences at university.  

  • 18p was used towards education, policy and engagement - helping your SU work to improve courses, exam feedback, and overall representing students interests in the university.  

We're always interested in hearing feedback and suggestions about our commercial enterprises, so if you've got something to say let us know at  


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