What is your SSAF and where does it go?
By Sophie Felice
You pay a fee to ANU every year called the Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF), but you might wonder, what exactly is it? Where does it go?
SSAF is an annual fee that goes towards non-academic university spending.
It is the product of a 2011 legislation change that allows universities to charge a non-academic fee which contributes towards student services.
Full-time students paid $326 of SSAF in 2023, while part-time students paid $163. SSAF can be paid upfront or can be part of your SA-HELP debt, meaning you won’t have to pay it until after graduation.
Certain individuals are exempt from paying SSAF, which includes students undertaking diplomas rather than degrees, and incoming international exchange students.
In 2023, the total SSAF pool paid by students came to $5, 657, 714. Service providers receive an indicative funding amount in November and if the actual amount from ANU students is less than advised, ANU will attempt to cover the difference and will put any overflow into a reserve fund for future years.
Among the five recipients of SSAF this year is ANUSA, who received 33 percent.
The student union runs events and advocates for student welfare. ANUSA publishes a financial report every year outlining where their SSAF funding goes.
ANU Sport received 17 percent. They offer discounted student memberships and host both interhall sports competitions and ANU sports teams. The full breakdown of how they distribute their funding can be found here.
The Student Services team received just over 10 percent of the available pool. In 2021, some of the services they provided encompassed ANU Careers, ANU Thrive, Set4ANU, ANU+ award, and more.
Your two student media organisations are also funded by SSAF. Woroni is your other campus media outlet, which encompasses digital stories, Woroni TV and Woroni Radio. They received four percent of the available pool. Their budget breakdown can be found here.
Our organisation, your other student media outlet, received two percent of the pool. You can scrutinise Observer’s finances here.
Six percent of the SSAF pool is reserved and not distributed to any of the five recipients.
So head to ANUSA events! Get to ANU Sport classes! Make sure you are reading up on ANU events with Observer, because it is your SSAF payments that keep us running.
Graphics by Will Novak
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