News & Blogs

The Ultimate Welcome Giveaway!

Tuesday 5 September 2023 11:49 News

Welcome Week is just around the corner and we can't wait! So, whilst we count down the days, we're feeling generous! By getting a ticket to one of our Welcome Events, you'll be in with the chance of winning some ridiculously sweet prizes...

The Prizes

One randomly-selected winner will get:

Officer Trustees Year in Review

Friday 28 July 2023 12:21 Blog
Imperial College Union

It's time to reflect as our Officer Trustees of 22/23 come to the end of their terms. Hayley, Dylan, Niamh, Jason and Nathalie summarise their time leading Imperial College Union, sharing their achievements, highlights and farewell messages.

  • Hayley - President

    I remember a message that came through very clearly from the OTs the year before me – the year will go by in the blink of an eye. I already had that expectation, but now coming to the end of my role, I could never have expected how fast it would go. There were many things I wanted to do in the role; some of them I have made pretty good progress in, and some I would have wanted to do much more in had I had more time. 

    One of the proudest moments in my role was when we successfully passed the College’s new Student Disciplinary Procedure at Senate. It has been a project that so many people have put so much time into. To see a set of new policies, which is much fairer and more transparent for students, come into fruition during my term has been amazing.  

    This year, we have made large strides in better connecting with other Students’ Unions and external bodies. We joined the Russell Group Students’ Union and established clear connections with the Russell Group itself. That was instrumental in the lobbying effort on the conditions of the recent Higher Education (Freedom of Speech) Act. Nathalie and Jason have also both spoken at Parliament on the Cost-of-Living Crisis and the use of Generative AI in Higher Education. With the turbulent political landscape of the foreseeable future, it is imperative that we continue in this direction to ensure we continue to have a voice in national policies affecting students. 

    A big part of my role this year has also been to sit on many decision-making bodies of the College to represent the students. We have been able to influence many things, for example ensuring that student issues are at the forefront of the College’s mind in the Student Experience Forum, and successfully adding a second student member onto College Council. 

    Seeing how decisions are made behind the scenes in this enormous organisation has truly been eye-opening. 

    Finally, coming to the end of the Back to Basics strategy, we have developed a new strategy that will guide the Union in what it does for the next five years. It is centred around the three values of Integrity, Inclusivity, and Innovation. I have no doubt that the Union will become a truly high-performing Students’ Union for all Imperial students. 


    Being Union President is an odd first job to have – being the ‘CEO’ of an organisation yet at the same time learning the most basic things about a workplace. This role gave me the opportunity to do things that people at my stage of life normally wouldn’t have a chance to do. I have had many odd experiences in the role, including being invited by Antony Gormley to his party and having to explain Gen-Z internet slangs for a disciplinary case. There have been some not-so-good times, like being consistently attacked online or in-person about every aspect of the Union. There have also been many amazing instances, for example giving the opening speech at my own Graduation in the Royal Albert Hall. But all in all, I have learnt a lot in this role, and I am very happy I had the chance to do it. A big thank you to everyone who has helped me this year.  

  • Dylan - Deputy President (Clubs & Societies)


    I hope that the work I’ve put in this year leads to the long-term changes and improvements the organisation needs. So much time is spent on the day-to-day running of CSPs that it can be difficult to get projects moving, let alone finished. If not now, I hope the benefits of the projects are felt many years after I leave the role.

    Digital Transformation

    After a rigorous tender process, we have signed an agreement with SUMS to transform our website and digital systems. Although there won’t be an immediate change, our website should look, feel and work a lot better before too long.

    LSE Varsity

    Despite several teething issues, we ran the first centrally organised and funded varsity against LSE this year. Over 20 matches were played across various sports, and we even managed to win a few of them. Unfortunately, LSE may have won overall, which should be great motivation to go and batter them next year. This is part of our long-term work to open ourselves up a little more to other institutions.

    Student Experience Fund

    There has finally been some success in starting a fund to support disadvantaged students to engage with activity. Whether it’s CSP events, departmental trips or the Summer Ball, the aim is to give financial support to those who need it most through discounts and subsidies. Over £100K of funding has been secured to pilot the project, with more to follow if the scheme proves to be successful. Watch this space…

    Sick List & Parachute Fund

    Support for struggling CSPs has always been complicated, with various systems having been tried. The Sick List allows ICU to identify and support these CSPs, tracking their progress from sick to healthy over multiple years if necessary. In the worst cases, CSPs can be supported financially through the parachute fund. The less this is used the better – only 1 CSP has had to access this support so far, but it has helped them stabilise for future years.

    Annual Budgeting

    Although principally Niamh’s project, much of my year has been spent refining the budgeting system used by CSPs. ICU distributes by far the largest amount of grant of any students’ union (almost half a million quid), so getting this right is crucial. Special thanks goes to Phil, who single-handedly designed and built a system to make budgeting easier, more transparent and more efficient. Special thanks also goes to Rob, who stayed with CSPB until midnight for three nights in a row to help allocate funds fairly and efficiently.

    Improved Processes

    There’s still a lot to work on here, but I’m pleased to say that all our processes are in a much better place than this time last year. It’s extremely tough to balance our legal obligations with all the things CSPs are doing – operational workload has dominated my time here. When so many things are happening all the time, even the slightest improvements in efficiency can mean huge improvements in the bigger picture. We’ve implemented receipts, automated responses and ticket tracking, FreshDesk and many more boring things that aren’t worth mentioning. Next year will build on that to make processes smoother and friendlier.

    The role has been the toughest and most rewarding challenge I’ve had in my life so far. It’s a shame I wasn’t able to engage in more project work, as so much time is spent keeping the daily CSP machinery going. It’s been an absolute pleasure working with so many amazing volunteers this year who make it all happen, they’re the soul of the Union. My greatest thanks goes to Christian Cooper, this year’s Sports Chair and the successor to my role. He’s an example to everyone around him, and will absolutely flourish in his position as DPCS next year. Thanks also to every one of the staff members at ICU, with special mention to the Activities Team who have been such a joy to work with. A final thanks to the other OTs this year, you’ve been an amazing team. All the best to next year’s sabbatical officers – you’ll smash it!

  • Niamh - Deputy President (Finance & Services)


    An interesting thing about being a sabbatical officer is with most the work you do, the impact isn’t seen for a year or two afterwards (for better or worse). What we spend our days doing can become elusive to the students we work to represent; as my year as Deputy President (Finance & Services) comes to an end, I’d like to reflect on what I did achieve:


    Our Venues & Events
    • Restarted the weekly postgraduate pub quiz at h-bar and a series of postgraduate specific events for Welcome 2022. Gained feedback from PGs to improve their event provision next year.

    • Launched more Union-led events throughout the year, including Chess & Vinyl’s and Terrarium Building, to be expanded next year.
    • Was Creative Director for Summer Ball 2023, which was the most successful Summer Ball financially and in terms of student responses.
    • Led the student representation aspect for Welcome Week 2022 and 2023.


    • Built relationships with the College and fellow London universities.
    • Led the London Student Sustainability Conference for Imperial, going from zero applications in 2021-22 to 16 applications from Imperial for 2022-23.
    • Led Imperial’s Sustainability Week for ICU, including a panel on Climate Justice featuring experts from Imperial.
    • Began the research to frame ICU’s future Sustainability Strategy.


    Annual Budgeting for CSPs

    I owe so much to Phil, Dylan, and our student volunteers for helping this goal be achieved. I’m immensely proud of this project and hope it can be taken forward for further development and improvements.

    • Managed the development and launch of a brand-new annual budgeting system.
    • Generated new training pages on the system and process and held drop-in sessions over four weeks to troubleshoot with CSPs.
    • Reviewed the policies and process which were approved by CSPB and the Board of Trustees.
    • Improved transparency and scrutiny that grant allocations see, and successfully received £425,000 of funding for the next academic year from the Board of Trustees as a result.


    It has definitely been an interesting ride. I am mainly proud I was able to achieve so much while also managing the operational burden the DPFS and DPCS roles have historically had to hold. Most of my hours have been wasted away by approving (and rejecting) claims, purchase orders, contracts, budgets, and activity proposals.

    A massive thank you to the amazing student volunteers I’ve gotten to work with; to the ICU staff team, especially activities and venues, who have been so supportive and my rocks throughout this year; and my fellow Officer Trustees, who’ve helped keep me at least slightly sane.

    Here's to the next sabbatical officers, and most importantly to my successor Stephanie; you’re going to achieve amazing things this year, and I know the Union will be in good hands with the six of you.

  • Jason - Deputy President (Education)


    Reflecting on my year as Deputy President (Education), I’m filled with lots of different emotions – the last 12 months has gone incredibly quickly and yet looking back so much has happened that I’m not sure how it’s only been a year.

    I started the year analysing the NSS responses and working in partnership with the College to produce an NSS Action Plan that will (hopefully) start addressing some of the long-standing issues we have at Imperial – assessment and feedback, workload, communication, and student wellbeing.

    This year also saw the College and the Union writing our Teaching Excellence Framework submissions. This involved doing lots of research into what the undergraduate experience is like across the College, and unsurprisingly what came out was a document focusing on assessment and feedback, academic support, and workload. Our response will be used to evaluate the College’s undergraduate teaching and our feedback has already been well-received by College.

    I’ve spent a large part of the year reviewing the College’s Student Disciplinary Procedure with Hayley and Nathalie – we’ve made significant improvements to the procedure and this will see students get better outcomes, resulting in a safer, more inclusive Imperial. I hadn’t originally planned to work on the review but I’m glad that I did because of the work we managed to achieve.

    Some of the most rewarding parts of this year has been working with our incredibly dedicated student volunteers who give up so much of their own time to represent students and improve the student experience at Imperial. The Union couldn’t function without our volunteers and I’m so immensely grateful to everyone I’ve worked with this year.

    Working with the College has also been a really interesting experience this year – Imperial has so many staff members who go above and beyond their roles and really care about what students have to say. This has meant that I’ve been able to feed directly into (and change) loads of different College policies this year, from Bioengineering’s new resit policy, to ensuring students are still able to progress and graduate this year with the disruption from industrial action, to how the College will approach the challenges from generative AI.

    The Union has now come to the end of its Back to Basics Strategy and we’ve spent the last six months developing our new strategy which will be launched in September. I’ve done really extensive consultation with students and staff to ensure that our strategy is truly reflective of what the Union is and what it needs to become. I’m proud of what we have achieved with the strategy and I’m really excited for how the Union will evolve over the next five years.

    The best part of the year has definitely been working with the Union staff team and my fellow Officer Trustees – Niamh, Nathalie, Hayley, Dylan – you have been such amazing colleagues and I will miss working with you every day.

  • Nathalie - Deputy President (Welfare)

    A Changing Union

    Damn. Two years really went by fast. I remember crying on a livestream as the election results were announced in 2021 as if it happened just yesterday.

    Running in that election is the best decision I have ever made. I was at a turning point in my life where after 6 years of chronic illness, I was finally starting to have hope again. At the same time, the Union was also at a turning point. It was emerging from a rapid transformation that it underwent during the pandemic and had just implemented a completely different staff structure and leadership than the one it had in 2019. Back to Basics was in full force, and the Union was ready to find its feet again after many years of difficulty.


    Since then, the Union has done the following:
    • Created a new, AQS accredited Advice Service with zero corrective actions at its first audit.

    • Joined networks of other student unions to lobby on issues affecting students at a national scale
    • Hosted two successful, inclusive Summer Balls in a row
    • Had sector-leading turnouts in its leadership elections
    • Wrote a new strategy to go beyond Basics


    At the same time, I did the following:
    • Increased the size of the Student Support Fund by more than 100% (from £400k to £900k)
    • Increased the size of the Imperial bursary by £700k and added estranged students and care leavers to the maximum band.
    • Reviewed the Student Disciplinary Procedures and increased the resource allocated to student casework by 450% to reduce wait times and improve support for students in the process
    • Spoke at Parliament about how the cost-of-living crisis was affecting students and had 4 of my recommendations actioned
    • Created the College’s first Mental Health & Well-being Strategy and so much more.


    A lot of people ask if I would do this role for a third year if it were allowed by the Education Act 1994. My answer to that is complicated.

    On the one hand, I love this work. It’s given me a sense of meaning and purpose that I have never felt before. For the first time since graduating high school, I actually feel excited to wake up in the morning.

    On the other hand, the time limited nature of this role is what created the pressure that I needed to succeed in the role. It made me act with a sense of urgency and enduring commitment that would have been otherwise difficult to maintain. It also means that the Union can go on to grow, change and evolve in a way that represents the ever-changing student body.

    So with that said, I’m signing off for the last time and leaving you in Andreea’s very capable hands.


    Your Deputy President (Welfare)


Summer Elections 2023: Results

Friday 16 June 2023 15:51 News

Results for our Summer Elections are in - find out who has been elected below! 

In this election we filled the post of ICSMSU President, and the role of BME Officer, which were not elected in our Leadership Elections in March. A total of 1,539 students voted in the elections, representing a 6.36% turnout.

  • ICSMSU President: Haider Nazerali
  • Black & Minority Ethnic Officer: Nathalie Podder


Win a Ski Trip to Austria!

Friday 9 June 2023 09:37 News

Summer Ball is fast approaching!

  • Terms & Conditions

    Win an Austria Ski – One Week trip for two people with Contiki. This 9-day trip starts and ends in London with return coach transfers (1 night in overnight coach and 7 nights in Contiki’s chalet in a same sex multi-share room) and 8 Breakfasts included.

    To enter, individuals must have purchased a ticket to attend Imperial College Union’s Summer Ball 2023, taking place on Saturday 24 June 2023.

    To qualify for the prize, you must be aged 18 – 35 years old.  No exceptions permitted.

    Winner to select their preferred departure dates for travel between December 2023 – March 2024. Travel departure dates for this competition are: 8 Dec 2023; 5 Jan, 12 Jan, 19 Jan, 26 Jan, 2 Feb, 23 Feb, 1 Mar 2024). Dates excluded from this prize draw are 15, 22 and 29 December 2023.

    Preferred travel dates to be supplied at least six months in advance, providing a minimum of three date options (date selection is subject to availability).
    The winner will be solely responsible for additional costs incurred, including visa costs, meals not indicated in the itinerary, optional excursions, cancellation insurance, medical insurance, gratuities, personal expenses and other items of an incidental nature.  

    On 26 June 2023, Imperial College Union will conduct a random drawing from all entries received within the campaign period and select a winner.

    The prize winners will be notified by email within three (3) business days of winner selection or as soon as reasonably practicable. To confirm the winner is a student of Imperial College, the winner must supply their CID number. The notification will include details of how the prize can be accepted and redeemed. 

    All prize winners will be contacted via email, using the email address used to purchase tickets.  

    The potential winners will have ten (10) days to respond to the winning notification before forfeiting their prize.  

    If such potential winner doesn’t respond by the deadline, they will forfeit that prize and an alternate winner will be selected from among all remaining entries for that drawing. 


    Entering the Competition

    This prize draw is open only to students of Imperial College Union who are aged 18-35 years old.  

    Employees of Imperial College, The Travel Corporation or any other company and/or agency connected with this promotion and their relatives are not permitted to enter.

    All eligible entries will be entered in the prize draw. Only one entry per person. 

    No entries on behalf of third parties will be accepted. No responsibility will be taken for late, lost, indecipherable or misdirected entries or for any failure of communication resulting from incorrectly supplied information.


    The Prize

    The winners must accept their prize in its entirety.  The winner will be asked to confirm their acceptance of the prize and the terms of the prize. The prizes are non-transferable, non-refundable and subject to availability. There is no cash alternative.  



    Imperial College Union’s decision is final and binding and no correspondence will be entered into regarding the outcome of the draw.

    Imperial College Union reserves the right to check the validity of any entry and the identity of any entrant or winner and guest and refuse giving a prize if Imperial College Union reasonably considers the entry and/or winner or guest to be in breach of the terms and conditions.

    Prize details are correct at date of publication. Imperial College Union reserves the right to substitute any element of the prize with a prize of an equal or greater value should any original element of the prize become unavailable for any reason, including the right to offer an alternative experience.

    Imperial College Union reserves the right at any time in its sole discretion to cancel, modify or supersede the prize draw if it believes, in its sole discretion, that the prize draw is not capable or is likely not to be capable of being conducted fairly or as specified within these terms and conditions due to events beyond its control (including, without limitation, a virus, a computer bug or unauthorized human intervention or any other cause beyond the reasonable control of Imperial College Union that could corrupt or affect the administration, security, impartiality or normal course of the prize draw).

    Imperial College Union is not responsible for any additional costs incurred by the winner of the competition. It is the winner’s responsibility to acquire appropriate travel insurance for the duration of the trip.

    Nothing in these terms and conditions shall limit in any way Imperial College Union’s liability for death or personal injury caused by its negligence. Subject to that, Imperial College Union shall have no liability for any delay and/or failure to perform any obligation to the winners or other entrants that is caused by: (a) technical problems of any kind which may limit or prevent any person's participation in the prize draw; (b) any loss or damage arising from or in connection with the allocation of the prizes; (c) any act or omission of any third party; or (d) any other events beyond Imperial College Union’s control that may cause the prize draw to be disrupted or corrupted.

    If any of these terms and conditions is found by a court or regulator to be invalid or unenforceable the other provisions shall continue to apply.

    This promotion shall be governed by the laws of England and Wales.

Marking and Assessment Boycott: What This Means For You

Wednesday 17 May 2023 11:19 Blog
Deputy President (Education)

By now you may have heard that the Imperial branch of the University and College Union (UCU) have announced that they will be commencing a marking and assessment boycott (MAB) starting on 17 May as part of their ongoing dispute with the College about the 2022-23 annual pay award. The College has released its guidance to students which can be found here.

  • 1. What is a marking and assessment boycott?

    The marking and assessment boycott means that staff participating in the boycott will not contribute to or mark any summative assessment. Summative assessment is any assessment that counts towards your degree. Examples of activities that would be included in the boycott include: 

    • Setting exams or assessments
    • Invigilating exams
    • Marking any (summative) coursework
    • Moderating assessments
    • Providing informal guidance or feedback about your coursework, including your likely marks
    • Processing and/or recording marks, whether on paper, online, or other means
    • Attending Boards of Examiners meetings (or other related meetings)
  • 2. Why have UCU called a marking and assessment boycott?

    This MAB is part of action short of strike which UCU is conducting over the College’s Annual Pay Award 2022-23. The College and the Joint Trade Unions (of which Imperial UCU is one) are now also in dispute over the 2023-24 Annual Pay Award and are undergoing ACAS mediation. 

    Note that this is separate from the nationwide pay dispute involving UCU and UCEA, as Imperial conducts local pay bargaining. 

  • 3. How long will the boycott last for?

    The boycott will run continuously until either: 

    1. The pay dispute is settled; or 

    2. UCU calls off the boycott; or 

    3. UCU reach the end of their mandate for industrial action (this is currently in six months time, around October). 

  • 4. What if I need my final grades and transcript for a job offer/further study/visa application?

    We understand that you may need your final grades and/or transcript for your future career. The College is taking this very seriously and is considering how to mitigate this impact. This page will be updated with further information once arrangements have been agreed. 

  • 5. What if I have approved mitigating circumstances?

    Mitigating circumstances will still be considered as normal and should not be affected by the marking and assessment boycott. 

  • 6. Should I still show up to my exam/viva? Should I still hand in my coursework?

    Yes. During the boycott, you should still attend and participate in all assessments as usual. If you do not, this will result in a mark of zero for that assessment. 

  • 7. Will my assessments be affected?

    We do not know which members of staff will be participating in the boycott. Not all staff are members of UCU, and not all UCU members may be participating in the boycott. Staff also do not need to be members of UCU to take part in the boycott. Membership of UCU varies across the College and therefore we expect different areas of College to be affected differently. Your Departmental Representatives should be liaising closely with your Department to ensure clear communication about the potential impact on students and additional changes to local arrangements. 

  • 8. What is Imperial College Union's position on the boycott?

    On 7 February 2023, Union Council, our highest democratic body, voted to support industrial action by UCU, including a marking and assessment boycott.

    We therefore call on the College to improve their Annual Pay Award and address the concerns put forward by the Joint Trade Unions. 

  • 9. What is Imperial College Union doing to support students during the boycott?

    We are working very closely with Faculties and the College to raise your concerns and ensure that they are addressed. We are providing input onto the measures the College is putting in place to ensure that students are able to progress and graduate without delay. 

  • 10. What is the College doing to address the boycott?

    The College is working very closely with us, as well as Heads of Departments, to ensure that any impact on students is minimised. 

    The College has decided to deduct 25% of pay per day for every member of staff who participates in the boycott. Any withheld pay will be directed to the Student Support Fund in the first instance. 

    Staff will be required to sign a declaration stating that they will not participate in the marking and assessment boycott prior to accepting assessments for marking. Exam scripts remain the property of Imperial and therefore must be returned if a staff member starts participating in the boycott. 

  • 11. How much does the College pay its staff?

    You can find benchmarking information, where the College compares its pay package with other institutions, here.

    You can find information on this year’s pay negotiations, including the College’s pay offer and the responses to the pay offer, here

  • 12. I have another question that isn't answered here.

    Please get in touch with me by emailing and I will get back to you as soon as possible. 

    If you have a specific, individual case, then our Advice Service may be able to help. Email and they will respond as soon as possible. 

New Daily Deals at FiveSixEight!

Friday 5 May 2023 08:32 Blog
Imperial College Union

Introducing FiveSixEight's new Daily Deals. Incredible drinks deals, every week, Monday to Friday. Round up your pals and join us at Beit Quad!

  • Monday
    Beer Today, Gone Tomorrow
    Bottle Buckets 
    Budweiser £2.50
      4 for £9.00
    Peroni 0.0% £1.50
      4 for £5.00
    All day, every day!
    Single House Spirit + mixer £3.85
    Pint of Carling, Carling Cider, Snakebite, Slime £3.50
  • Tuesday
    Don't Walk, Rum
    Rum Club
    Single Twin Fin Rum + mixer 2 for £8.00
    Double Twin Fin Rum + mixer 2 for £11.00
    All day, every day!
    Single House Spirit + mixer £3.85
    Pint of Carling, Carling Cider, Snakebite, Slime £3.50
  • Wednesday
    Pitch, Please!
    Happy Hour 4 - 7pm
    Carling Pitcher  £10.00
    Carling Cider Pitcher £10.00
    Snakebite Pitcher £10.00
    Alcopop 7 - 9pm
    Any VK, WDK, Reefer £2.00
    Double Twin Fin Rum 2 for £11.00
    All day, every day!
    Single House Spirit + mixer £3.85
    Pint of Carling, Carling Cider, Snakebite, Slime £3.50
  • Thursday
    On It Like a Gin + Tonic
    Gin Club
    Single Tarquins Gin + mixer 2 for £8
    Double Tarquins Gin + mixer 2 for £11
    All day, every day!
    Single House Spirit + mixer £3.85
    Pint of Carling, Carling Cider, Snakebite, Slime £3.50
  • Friday
    Worth a Shot (or 6)
    Rack Deals
    Sambuca Shot 6 for £10.00
    Tequila Shot 6 for £10.00
    Alcopop 7 - 9pm
    Any VK, WDK, Reefer £2.00
    Double Twin Fin Rum 2 for £11.00
    All day, every day!
    Single House Spirit + mixer £3.85
    Pint of Carling, Carling Cider, Snakebite, Slime £3.50

Please drink responsibly.

Easter Opening Hours

Thursday 30 March 2023 11:25 News

We've made it - term 2 has come to an end! We hope you all manage to have a relaxing well-earned break. Please see below a list of our closing and re-opening dates: 

The Union Building will close at 6pm on 5 April and will re-open at 9am on Thursday 13 April.