Students walking outside the Sir Ian Wood Building

How is the University supporting the RGU community?

By Professor Lynn Kilbride, Vice Principal for Academic Development and Student Experience - 19 October 2022

At Robert Gordon University we appreciate that this time of year can be a struggle for many, particularly with the serious economic backdrop, and want to reassure our students, staff and community as a whole that we’re committed to supporting you all throughout.

With the realistic cost-of-living pressures that we all face now approaching winter, we have implemented some new initiatives that we’d like to highlight, and ensure that everyone knows of our existing offerings and facilities.

Firstly, we have launched a new Breakfast Club that is open to all students and staff in level 3 of the Students' Union in the Riverside Building. This will provisionally run every Tuesday morning from 08:30 – 09:30 and give people the opportunity to enjoy free food and drinks in a warm, comfortable, and social space. More can be found about the club in the email that went out to students and staff on Friday 14 October.

We’d also like to remind all students that our gym membership is still entirely free. RGU SPORT contains ample changing room and showering facilities as well as of course a large gym, gym hall, swimming pool, exercise classes and spaces to relax in. For our staff, RGU SPORT offers a discount on annual memberships through a salary deduction system.

Throughout the university we offer warm social spaces that students and staff alike are very welcome to use. Our library in SIWB is currently open from 08:00 – 22:30 Monday to Thursday, 08:00 – 20:00 on Fridays and 10:00 – 20:00 at the weekend too. The tower has four levels of library facilities including heated space, comfortable seating and group areas to work and socialise in.

The Students’ Union is now located in the Riverside Building and equally offers an abundance of space to relax in. Over three floors you’ll find study pods, sofas, our friendly Union staff plus free to use pool tables and gaming consoles. There are also canteens, heated spaces and showering facilities across campus which everyone is both welcome and encouraged to make us of.

From a food and drink perspective we provide microwaves in all of our buildings so your meals can be heated free of charge. We also offer value meals for students on a daily basis at a lower cost and ‘grab bags’ for a cheaper rate at the end of the day when our catering services have surplus food. We’re also currently working with the Union to look into introducing a student food bank as well as cooking classes with tips on value recipes to support you, if required, with meal planning.

We appreciate that the beginning of term coincides with buses often being very busy so thank you for your patience in using the service. It’s now of course free for all under-22’s, an initiative which younger students should definitely take advantage of. Our campus is one to be enjoyed and utilised and we really hope you all feel welcome and looked after when visiting.

If you are struggling financially, we would like to make students aware of the range of additional and accessible funding options at RGU. The Emergency Loan Fund is available as an interest free, same-day loan to support students with immediate financial crisis. Our Discretionary Fund is also available for UK students experiencing financial hardship whilst an International Student Emergency Fund supports students with basic living costs such as food, utilities and rent. We want to reassure all students who use our accommodation that costs are also entirely inclusive of all utilities and that we have a guarantee in place to prevent any rent increases.

Furthermore, the Union is engaging with Money Advice Scotland with plans to run free student workshops which would cover topics such as budgeting, money management, borrowing, financial planning and general advice on the cost-of-living pressures. Our university services, such as ResLife, are staffed by full-time welfare professionals and offer advice on a range of issues including finances, crisis management and health and wellbeing.

We recognise the outlook may change over the coming months and will continue to review the support we offer in liaison with our communities to ensure we provide an experience that is tailored to everybody’s needs. If any of our students, or indeed staff, are struggling, have concerns or would like to provide feedback then please do get in touch.

If you are a staff member, send your feedback at YOURVIEW@RGU.AC.UK
If you are a student, log-in to ASK RGU 

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