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Harper offers credit crunch help

Posted 27 January 2009

Harper Adams University College has launched a new finance package to help people study their way through the credit crunch.

“In the present climate, starting a new course, top-up year or postgraduate study could prove the ideal alternative to battling against an ever-increasing number of candidates for an ever-decreasing volume of jobs,” said Academic Registrar Dr Noel Morrison, who announced the aid package.

“Anyone considering starting a first-degree is urged not to be put off by financial gloom, as Harper Adams courses, which include a year in industry, take four years to complete, by which time the economic picture should be a great deal brighter. In addition to sheltering from the crunch, students can boost their knowledge and skills and put themselves forward for better jobs, with better pay, upon graduation.”

Study does come with its own costs, but student loans are cheaper and easier to get than personal ones, and there’s plenty of other financial support available.

Harper Adams has just reviewed its internal, college-funded scholarship scheme and will introduce £1,500 (increased from the existing £750-£1,000 range) scholarships for first year undergraduates with a household income of £25,000 or less in the 2009/10 academic year.

Also on offer from next autumn will be a guaranteed scholarship of £1,000, in addition to any means tested scholarship to which they may be entitled, for all students joining full-time programmes which will enable them to top-up a lower level qualification to a degree.

Harper also boasts a wide range of non means-tested scholarships sponsored by private companies and individuals. In the current year the scholarships are worth £70,000 in total, which will be awarded to 50 students at a presentation event early in February.

The scholarships have been secured by the Harper Adams Development Trust, which raises funds to make sure students can take part in higher education and have the best quality facilities throughout their studies.

“The generous support offered by our sponsors makes a great deal of difference to our students,” explained Development Trust Officer Renée Gallina-Morris. “The sum of 2008/9 awards is the greatest to date, and demonstrates the value of our students in the eyes of their sponsors.”

And the financial support does not stop there – a great number of organisations offer scholarships and education grants that are not limited to students from any one institution.
On the agriculture front alone, for example, the Staffordshire and Birmingham Agricultural Society supports four students each year. In 2008 all four of these awards, worth £1,000 each, were won by Harper Adams Students.

Three Harper students received education grants worth £1,000 to £1,500 from Newark & Nottinghamshire Agricultural Society and one final year student competed successfully to win an NFU/Dairy Crest Scholarship Award of £1,000. These are just a small selection of external awards obtained over the course of the last year.

Dr Morrison added: “There are hundreds of societies, charities and trusts offering financial assistance to students who meet their criteria – it’s a case of finding the right one and making your bid stand out. Don’t let money worries put you off getting the education you need and future you deserve.”

Call 01952 815 000 to find out about the wide range of agricultural, animal, engineering, business, countryside, environment and tourism degrees offered at Harper Adams. Or visit the website www.harper-adams.ac.uk

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