David Gilani

£2 million going directly to students’ pockets!

pound-coinsThe University and SUSU have made a great step towards financially supporting students who need it most, by putting £2.2 million of bursaries into students pockets this year! … and there’s room to double that for future years!

Each year, SUSU gets to work with some fantastic staff over at the University of Southampton to create an access agreement – essentially a document which shows the government what our University is doing to help bring people from wider backgrounds to University, and ensuring that all students here are supported, especially those struggling most with finances.

A couple of years ago, SUSU worked with the University to move large amounts of money from fee-waivers into bursaries, so that all students who originally would have been given a fee-waiver now at least get a choice. All research shows that bursaries are unequivocally better for students when compared to fee-waivers, so this was an incredible step forward.

One of the first things I did as President this year was to work with the University finances team to better promote the option of bursaries to students. From information on the University website, the SUSU website, a blog from myself, and a video series, we helped reach over 3000 students. This in turn led to 67% of  students this year realising the benefits on bursaries.

In total, this has meant that £1.08 million has already gone to students in the form of a bursary, with that amount still to go out again this year.

SUSU isn’t stopping there though, at Union Council, students passed a policy showing the universal support for bursaries, so SUSU is currently working with the University to move all funding from fee-waivers into bursaries. This could potentially unlock another £2 million of funding each year, which would go directly into the pockets of students who need it most!

Cheers for reading – David Gilani – Union President

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