Students are set to be disappointed by the recently released budget, and universities are struggling to come to terms with their own financial tribulations. The latest figures from UCAS have shown that there has been an 8.8% rise in total university applications and a 15.8% rise in applications from over-25s as many try to avoid an unpromising job market.
The government has, however, announced a cap on these admissions, with no more than 10,000 extra students being admitted this year. It has been estimated that at least 28,000 will miss out on a university place due to this cap, while the budget plans for a £400m ‘efficiency drive’ in higher education.
As universities admit to being short of funding, students are starting to focus more on cost when it comes to choosing a university place. The BBC has reported that two thirds of vice chancellors have advocated the raising of fees to anything between £4,000 and £20,000 per year. It is feared that more university costs will be passed onto students. A poll by the UK Youth Parliament found that 36% of students may choose a local university so they can live at home due to financial worries.
Many students are also set to be hit by increased tax on alcohol, with the rates on beer up by 4p a pint, 14p on a bottle of wine and 55p on a bottle of spirits.