The Impact of Philanthropic Gifts

Giving is not just about making a donation. It's about making a difference.

Here we celebrate recent projects and initiatives, which have been made possible due to generous investment from our supporters and funders. 

  • The Digitech Centre at BT's Adastral Park, providing cutting-edge digital information and communications technology teaching and research
  • The new Health and Wellbeing Quarter, housing our Integrated Care Academy, the first of its kind in the country
  • Projects supporting and enhancing student wellbeing and mental health
  • Projects promoting and celebrating diversity, equality and inclusion within our University community and across the region

"The University of Suffolk has meant a great deal to me. I received funding in the form of a sports scholarship... that comes from public donations which provided me with a higher education. It changed my life and it can change so many others."

Jaz Taylor, World Championship and World Cup medal winner, Telemark Skiing

University Annual Fund

We have been gratefully receiving donations from our friends, staff and supporters since 2016. No matter the size of the gift, your generous support has continued to transform lives through the gift of education.  Staff and students are invited to apply on an annual basis for funding support, where their applications are considered by our panel of senior leaders and long term supporters in accordance with and in support of the values and principles of the institution. Unrestricted donations can be used where the need and impact is greatest, and the wide variety of initiatives we have supported have enabled us to focus on enhancing the student experience and provided us with a means to actively respond to the needs of all.

If you would like to support our annual fund giving programme or have a project you are specifically interested in, please do get in touch with the Alumni Relations and Development Team on 01473 338000 or

Projects supported by the University of Suffolk Annual Fund

The 2019/20 disbursement round for the Foundation Board Annual Fund received a total of 34 applications, amounting to £106,233.02 in requests. Just over £20,000 has been disbursed following the final decisions made by the Foundation Board panel.  13 projects have received awards from the Foundation Board Annual Fund this year:

Work Experience Bursary

The Work Experience Bursary is designed to enable students to access work experience opportunities that they may not otherwise have been able to access due to financial constraints

Gals that Game

The Suffolk Centre for Female Entrepreneurship will be hosting the second ‘Gals that Game’ event in April 2020.  The event will be an all-female games jam offering a friendly and supportive environment for those interested in exploring the field of game development.

Usability Testing – Let’s get user friendly

The Found Board will be funding essential equipment for this research project looking at assessing the impact digital technology use on the quality of life for vulnerable people within a health and social care setting

Tech for Social Good

A one day ‘Hackathon’ for students and alumni aiming to understand from the student/graduate perspective how technology can help improve their mental health.

University of Suffolk Women’s Netball Team

Provision of a match day kit for the University of Suffolk Women’s Netball Team

Sports Scholarships

Supporting students currently competing at a national or international level in their chosen sport

LGBTQ+ society

The design and development of an LGBTQ+ Banner and flag to promote the society across the university and to be used to celebrate Suffolk Pride

Animal Assisted Therapy sessions

Enabling more than 100 students to relieve their exam stress and keep motivated by spending time with a therapy pet

Student Wellbeing Ambassadors

A collaboration between the Student’s Union, student Services and SISER to deliver a co-produced research project assessing student perceptions of well-being, mental health and support services in higher education.  Students will be trained by Student Minds to deliver advice and support to students across the university.

University of Suffolk Men’s Football Team

Provision of new playing tops for the Men’s Football Team to represent the University across the country.

Games Society

To support the society to expand further with the development of a banner

RAG Society

Raising and Giving (RAG) is a nationwide student initiative which enables students to coordinate and host fundraising events.

Random Acts of Kindness

Helping students to manage and reduce exam stress by offering a series of ‘Random Acts of Kindness’ at specific points throughout the year.

A further £15,000, due to a generous anonymous donation, has been disbursed specifically to Learning and Teaching based projects:

Growing Resilience: an Interventions Toolkit (GRIT) – Maureen Haaker and Dr Wendy Lecluyse

GRIT will be a toolbox for staff and students based on a three-pronged approach targeting the teaching environment, the online environment and within the personal tutor system. The project will deliver a curriculum guide with activities, a resource area in the OLE Brightspace and enhanced guidance for structured personal tutorials.

Persuasion: a tool for facilitating classroom discussion – Dr Will Thomas

This project will develop a classroom game which facilitates engagement and discussion on topics relating to persuasion, power, motivation and influence. This tool will help to encourage productive debate of abstract and complex topics, supporting students in developing skills, confidence their academic voice.

Extenuating / mitigating circumstance: student progression and student experience, lessons learned – Dr Cristian Dogaru and Graham Thirkettle

This project will focus on the extenuating circumstances processes at the University and explore data to give insight into the impact they have on student progression, and academic success. This will support the development of timely interventions, reducing gaps in success and progression as identified in our Access and Participation Plan.

Each of these projects has scope for impact at individual, course, school and whole-University level, and further our work and expertise in successful widening participation. These projects will be showcased at our summer Learning and Teaching Conference.

We received 33 applications and we had a total of £22,067 to disburse.  Below is brief detail of the 11 successful projects for 20/21 Foundation Board Disbursement round.  

Wellness Walks

Application to provide funding for branded umbrellas, refreshments and ponchos for socially distant walks hosted by the Students' Union. 

Football Equipment

Both men and women's Football now train together under 1 coach. This application was awarded funding to purchase equipment so that more students can train together at any one time but could also be shared with social sport sessions. 

Social Sports

Application to fund the purchase of the resources required to host social sport sessions online due to lockdown restrictions and social distancing rules. 

Care Packages for Student

Funding for care packages for students based on a nomination process.  

Sports Bursaries 2020

Application to provide funds to students for expenses they incur whilst taking part in competitive sport, particularly to support students who have faced adversity during the pandemic. 

Suffolk Green Project

Application to support a project to provide bird boxes, bee house and bug friendly spaces, educational materials; supporting student wellbeing and the wider sustainability aims. 

Suffolk Student Wellbeing Ambassadors

Application to fund the continuation of Suffolk Student Wellbeing Ambassadors. 

Badminton Team

Application to support the purchase of kits and equipment for the Badminton Team. This team is new and therefore do not have a kit already. 

Christian Union Music Equipment

Application to fund the purchase of music equipment for the Christian Union Society. 

WiFi Enabled Microscopes

Application to fund specialised microscopes to aid teaching and learning in the classroom and remotely. 

Interim Laptop Loan

Application to fund an interim laptop for students with disabilities to loan and have access to a laptop while waiting to receiving their equipment from the DSA.

11 successful projects were funded by the University of Suffolk Annual Fund 21/22

LGBTQ+ Voices

An Anthology of student life from the University of Suffolk. A student engagement project that aims to celebrate diversity, equality and inclusion by sharing student stories, knowledge and perspectives in creative ways.  The final outcome will be a set of short anthologies produced in coloured booklet form which together from a rainbow boxset.

Undergraduate and Postgraduate Sports Students Research Mentoring Programme

A programme aimed at improving the University of Suffolk student experience, facilitating research outputs, development of networks of experts and enhancing student employability.  

Enhancing the Psychological Well-Being of University of Suffolk students and Staff through Slow Breathing

A study to educate University of Suffolk students and staff to accurately use daily Slow Breathing techniques over a 12-week period via smart phone application.

Crafts For Wellbeing

Making sure that our students are physically and mentally for to study is at the heart of the Student's Union.  With an increase in the demand for advice services, wellness support and wellbeing events, the SU will be offering 3 wellbeing events which aim to engage or students in crafts, helping them to relax by creating something beautiful.

Health and Wellbeing Support Packages

Providing students with a wellbeing support package to highlight the importance of good mental health.

Random Coffee Hour

Offering a series of 'coffee hours' randomly split out throughout 'crunch' points of the academic year.  This project aims to improve the wellbeing of our students during key revision/exam periods or in the lead up to dissertation submission dates.

Language Courses

Providing the opportunity for our students to attend Spanish classes and British Sign Language course through the Student's Union.  Building on the success of a previous BSL course this will provide students with the opportunity to build on their existing skills and learn new ones, making them more employable and contributing to their personal and professional development.

LGBTQ+ History Month Student-Led Events

The LGBTQ+ Staff Network and the LGBTQ+ Student Society will be holding a range of events to celebrate and remember LGBTQ+ History month, with the aim of making it a University tradition to celebrate the diverse community at the University of Suffolk.  An artistic workshop, free to attend by all students, staff and alumni, will take place to create a ceramic tile wall art piece that will be displayed proudly at the University of Suffolk.

LGBTQ+ History Month- Lanyards

The LGBTQ+ Staff Network and the LGBTQ+ Student Society have been provided with the funds to produce LGBTQ+ lanyards in support of the events they have planned

Suffolk+ Awards

The Suffolk+ Awards is a new employability initiative which recognises and rewards the volunteering hours that our students complete at their SU.  the scheme is open to all volunteers such as part-time officers, society and sports committees, course and accommodation reps.

Environmental Sensing of Things

Supporting the development of a prototype Internet of Things (IoT) environmental sensing in the School of Engineering, Arts, Sciences and Technology(EAST) by providing hardware required.

University of Suffolk is an exempt charity under the Charities Act 2011, regulated by the Office for Students (OfS) and a company limited by guarantee.  Registered in England and Wales, company number 05078498, registered address: Waterfront Building, Neptune Quay, Ipswich, IP4 1QL.