NUS Student Union of the Year

Posted 5 Days Ago

On Thursday 15th March NUS Scotland held their annual awards ceremony, celebrating the successes of students associations and unions around the country. Heriot-Watt University Student Union were nominated for three awards – and we’re extremely proud to say we went away with two! Our fantastic Officers were awarded with the Officer Team of the Year trophy, which we were absolutely delighted with – but then things went one step further and we walked away with University Students’ Association of the Year too!

This is a brilliant achievement for the Student Union. Not only did we win two awards, but we are the only Union to ever win Scottish Students’ Association of the Year twice – and we were up against some very strong competition! Both of our wins are down to the efforts of our amazing volunteers and staff members, all of whom made this possible. We are extremely proud and we hope you are proud of us too.

Big love,

Your Student Union (of the Year)

University Staff Strikes

Posted 2 Months Ago

Why are the staff striking?

The short answer is because changes proposed to their pension scheme means staff will get less pension but must pay more for it. Under the current proposal a staff member could lose as much as £208,000 over their career!

The University Superannuation Scheme (USS), which is the pension scheme for most staff in our University, has a hole in the balance sheet, being only 89% funded.

Many pension schemes run at a deficit. To reduce the USS deficit (from 89% funded to 91%) it is proposed to remove the ‘defined benefit’ for staff. What will be put in place is a ‘defined contribution’ pension scheme. While the defined benefit gives staff a guaranteed level of income when they retire, the ‘defined contribution’ is much more dependent on market returns.

This means staff will get less pension, and will have to pay more for it, without a pay rise. This is an income reduction.

Many of our staff have families, mortgages, and other commitments. To enforce a poor deal on our staff is detrimental to our students. What staff member would be happy with a pay cut? A poorer pension? Does that motivate them? Does out support them to provide the best for our students?

The pension deal was put forward on behalf of the University by University’s United Kingdom (UUK), a body that represents Vice-Chancellors and Principals of Universities.

The staff strikes, organised by members of the University and Colleges Union (UCU) are about getting a better deal for our staff.

The strikes dates are as follows:

  • Week one: 22-23 February
  • Week two: 26-28 February
  • Week three: 5-8 March
  • Week four: 12-16 March

A Statement from the Student Union Executive:

We, the Student Union Executive, believe staff have a right to be fairly rewarded for their work for students and the University as a whole. We urge the University to lobby UUK to negotiate a better deal for our staff. We believe in quality teaching and research, as it is an integral part of the student experience, the core of what a University an academic institution. We believe that happy and supported staff help provide the best experience for students of our University.

You can support the staff by joining the picket line.

We urge the university to communicate with students on their efforts to avoid the strike, and support our students. We will negotiate changes to coursework deadline dates to ensure our students can continue in their studies, and to maintain the academic integrity of Heriot-Watt University.

If you want to show support for the staff, if you want to make your frustration heard about losing classes, or if you think that our staff deserve better, then please email Richard Williams, our Vice-Chancellor and Principal at or James Richards, President of the local UCU branch at, or tweet at and let them know your thoughts.

If you want to get involved, show your support by joining the picket line. Show that you support our staff by not crossing the picket line. This is a poor deal for our staff, and something better can be done.

If your studies have been seriously adversely affected then please get in touch with the Advice Hub at and they can support you through Mitigating Circumstances forms.


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Festive Opening Hours

Posted 3 Months Ago

The Shop

16 - 17 DEC 1000 – 1400

18 - 21 DEC 0800 – 1800

22 DEC 08:00 - 15:00


3 - 5 JAN 0800 – 1800

The Union 

11 - 15 DEC 0900 – 0000

16 - 17 DEC CLOSED

18 - 21 DEC 0900 - 1700 (reception only)

22 DEC 0900 - 1500 (reception only)




Christmas at The Union!

Posted 4 Months Ago

We've got a full package of festive treats lined up for you this Christmas. In addition to our 12 days of Christmas Countdown, we will be selling festive Costa Drinks, Mulled Cider, special Christmas Burgers and Paninis and essential Mince Pies. 

MONDAY 4TH DECEMBER - Christmas Jumper Day - We’re having our jumper day early this year so you don’t miss out on the fun!

TUESDAY 5TH DECEMBER - Christmas Freakshake Day - We’re jumping on the latest craze with a Christmas twist.

WEDNESDAY 6TH DECEMBER - Vintage Vibes Card Signing - Send a card to someone who may be alone this Christmas.

THURSDAY 7TH DECEMBER - Christmas Films Day - We’ll showing some classics all day Zeros to get you in the mood.

FRIDAY 8TH DECEMBER - Christmas Cracker Day - Free Christmas Cracker with every meal purchased!

MONDAY 11TH DECEMBER - Christmas Cracker Day - Free Christmas Cracker with every meal purchased!

TUESDAY 12TH DECEMBER - Free Christmas Dinner Buffet - That’s right, we’re putting on a FREE Christmas buffet in The Union.

WEDNESDAY 13TH DECEMBER - Santa Present Giveaway - Santa will be visiting The Union and giving away some super freebies.

THURSDAY 14TH DECEMBER - Free Mince Pie with every Large Coffee - Grab a large coffee... Get a free mince pie!

FRIDAY 15TH DECEMBER - Union Christmas Lunches & Karaoke & Christmas Cocktail Evening. End the term with a sit down Christmas Lunch, £10 for a starter and main and if you’ve got room you can add dessert. Continue the celebrations with a special Christmas Karaoke and Cocktail Evening.