NUI Galway Students’ Union Outraged by University Foundation’s Wasteful SpendingNews & Events
NUI Galway Students’ Union Outraged by University Foundation’s Wasteful Spending
NUI Galway Students’ Union is outraged and condemns the University Foundation’s wasteful and frivolous spending which came to light following an investigation by the Charities Regulator. The Foundation Office is charged with raising money for the University from philanthropic sources and also from the Alumni Fund. Graduates are encouraged to make regular donations with the assurance that donations are used for scholarships and to enable students who are facing crisis or financial hardship to remain at University. The mission ‘to transform the lives of students and support research that enhances the lives of people across the globe’ has not been strictly adhered to. The revelations that huge sums including €30,000 on taxi trips, with the majority being return journeys from Galway to Dublin, €48,000 on business class flights, on average €385 a night in a mix of four and five star hotels, €61,000 on Galway races tickets and €10,000 on international Ireland rugby matches, has evoked feelings of anger and disgust.
Clare Austick, Students’ Union President said: “We expect better from an institution like NUI Galway that should be setting an example of good corporate governance and efficient management of resources. Instead, we see money that could have been used to support vulnerable students being spent on business class flights to five star hotels. This week students sitting exams have to pay for transport to off campus exam centres which should be provided by the university. For commuting students, and students not familiar with the city, this is an added source of stress, and they don’t have the luxury of personalised transport to ‘ensure they are not tired and can give their best’. The University needs to take action to reassure its many donors that their money is being used for the purposes it was donated. We are asking for a commitment from the university that this will not happen again by allowing a student representative to oversee the accounts of the board.”