Increase the Student Loan Available to students in the City of Cambridge
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MAKE STUDYING AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY
I believe there is a problem with the way student finance is awarded. London students are eligible for an increased amount of support from Student Finance England, however, multiple insights have shown Cambridge to be nearly, if not as, expensive, as London – Cambridge even ranked 8th most expensive city to live as a student in May 2017 (https://www.varsity.co.uk/news/13120
I truly believe that Anglia Ruskin University students have been severely overlooked by this, as well as Cambridge University students. Cambridge University offers multiple ways to decrease expense whilst studying, which Anglia Ruskin University simply cannot afford to offer. For example, Cambridge University students are offered a bursary up to £3,500 if their income is under £42,620 (as of the current academic year) (https://www.cambridgestudents.cam.ac.uk/cambridgebursary - which is only a dream for students at Anglia Ruskin. When deciding where to study I was ecstatic to receive my offer to study in my dream city, however I am now at the point where I feel cheated and upset at the situation I see myself, and so many ARU students, in. Furthermore, Whilst Cambridge University does offer a bursary it may also be an issue for them to live in such an expensive city, as they too may not be able to make ends meet.
They say your university years are care-free and enjoyable but so far I have felt neither of these things whilst studying. I believe the government should look into providing an increased loan for Cambridge area students, to help make university less about worrying how to pay rent and more about focusing on studying. If this is not possible, which I unfortunately feel it will be, is there any chance of decreasing rent in Cambridge. This is because after searching for a 5 bedroom house for my second year nothing came up which did not either have extortionate application fees and/or deposits, or which was under £500 a month per person, excluding bills. Furthermore, under less than 5 years ago in June 2013 was Cambridge labelled more expensive than even London due to its extortionate rent costs (https://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/educationnews/10094566/Cambridge-is-most-expensive-city-to-be-a-student.html and, as far as I can find, nothing was done to alter these rent prices.
Living in Cambridge as a student is extremely stressful and, highlights the struggle students in large, well established, expensive cities face which I have been blind to in the past. Studying in Cambridge is always painted as a fun, enjoyable experience which we are being denied due to the lack of government financial support.
I have started this petition in the hopes of the UK government increasing the finance received by students studying in expensive places, outside of London, especially Cambridge. I believe university should be about learning, not about working as many hours as you can to afford to socialise, eat, pay rent or do anything students in any other area of the country can do.
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