Letter to the Editor
Tuesday, 17 September 2019
Luxury Flights and UCD
Sir, – Your news article on the amount publicly funded universities spent on business class flights over the last year was shocking (“Publicly funded universities spent about ¤1.5 million on luxury flights”, News, September 16th).
As Ireland’s global university, it is not a surprise that UCD staff travel regularly. However, these expenses should be kept to a minimum, and there is no need for business and premium flights to be booked when more affordable options could have been explored.
In a university with the most expensive on-campus accommodation in the country, and where a third of the student population are international students, many of whom pay full fees to study with us, it is disappointing to see the university spending outrageous figures to travel in luxury, when the costs could easily have been kept down. Especially when this money could have been invested to service the needs of students.
This is not the first time that we have seen our university spending money on luxury ahead of students’ basic needs, such as on desperately needed mental health supports.
Some €14 million was spent last year on building the University Club, aimed at alumni of the university.
Meanwhile, our health service and library have not seen significant investment in over a decade, despite rising numbers of students. – Yours, etc,