Royal College of Art Student Union

Royal College of Art Student Union

At a glance


  • Arts
  • Education

Other details

Geographical remit: 


The Charity's objectives are to promote the interests and welfare of Students at the Royal College of Art during their course of study; representing, supporting and advising students.

The Charity is recognised as the sole representative channel between Students and the Royal College of Art; and all other external democratic or representative bodies. The Charity provides cultural, educational, recreational, social and sporting activities and events; as well as facilitating forums, seminars and events to support debate and discussion across creative disciplines for the personal development of its members.

The impact of these objectives is to enhance the overall learning and life experience at the Royal College of Art, and the creation of collaborative partnerships across all creative disciplines.


The RCA Students’ Union (SU) is here to represent, enrich and entertain. The SU is a hub of activity. We organise events that offer an opportunity for students to get to know each other and to argue, agree, debate, dance, imagine and relax with those from different courses. The ArtBar, RCAfé and Café Royale are vibrant, experimental, enticing places where students can meet for a conversation, a group collaboration or simply to party. We invite, encourage and expect contributions and ideas from students to foster a sense of belonging.

We aim to be welcoming, generous, innovative and free-speaking. We work to ensure that the students get
the best out of their time at the College.

More than simply a social organiser, the SU plays a vital role in providing an essential link between staff and
students. The Union consists of the sabbaticals officers and 5 members of staff.The President and Vice-President are elected from the student body in the summer term and take up their posts the following academic year. They create the bridge between students and governing committees, such as Senate, Council, Academic Standards and Planning & Resources (to name but a few) and meet regularly with the Rector and the Senior Management Team. The ruling body of the SU is the Student Representative Council (SRC), consisting of a minimum of two representatives elected from each course. It is a decision-making arena where students bring concerns to the attention of the President & Vice-President, who then present these issues to the relevant college committee. It is also a creative body that influences how the SU is run.

The SRC meets at least twice a term.Alongside student representation the SU provides the infrastructure for a number of existing clubs and societies, as well as the opportunity to start new ones. We organise trips for students abroad and throughout the UK as well as hosting a lecture series each year. Speakers are invited to address subjects relevant to the student body but that are suitably different from academic lectures provided by the Schools. Last but not least, the SU hosts numerous parties, culminating in the Convocation Ball to celebrate graduation in truly memorable style.

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