Do tuition fees matter?

Recently there has been a lot of discussion in the news about tuition fees and whether the price of them is fair or not. It has also been argued that higher tuition fees will prevent poorer students from attending university and additionally that it’s unfair that richer students who pay up front don’t need to pay the extra 6% of interest on loans for tuition fees as well. It’s a reality that people leave university with around £50k in debt and that total unpaid loans could total around £12bn in the very near future.

All of the above are big issues and these are all very stressful issues for students. However, are these barriers big enough reasons to not attend university? In my opinion I’m not sure they are and here is why:

1. When you go to university you expect to borrow money. Given your future earning potential, then banks will fight for your business as clients and are very flexible in how much they will lend you

2. You are investing in your future, so remember this as you take out loans. This will reduce the pressure on you, but remember that you will need to pay this money back so be sensible on what you are spending.

3. Finally, everyone is in the same boat as you so this generally makes it all feel a lot less scary.

After you leave university and get a job, a sensible amount of money is taken out of your bank account automatically over a long period. After a short time, you become used to these payments and you end up treating this like tax that leaves your account monthly. Eventually this amount will be repaid and remember that you don’t have to pay it whilst not working.

The student loans that banks generate are big enough to help you through your studies. If the amount isn’t enough then you can always work alongside your studies. The government is talking about reducing student fees from £9,000 to £6,500, but will this really remove barriers for poorer people attending university? Alternatively, why don’t universities help students find more work offers by investing this extra money to help people in tight financial situations? Or even by helping people to find internships with companies during summer months?

I would like to hear your views on this matter.

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