Student fees have hit record highs this year, but financial aid and scholarships are set to soar.
The Federal Government is set to spend an extra $8.5 billion this financial year, with a new $1 billion fund set to be launched in December, which will give financial aid to the nation’s students, which have been hit by a decade of soaring student debt.
Financial aid, which has grown at an annual rate of 1.6 per cent, is set for a record $1.8 billion this year with scholarships set to rise to $2 billion, according to the Government.
But students are set for the biggest hike in financial aid funding ever, rising from $1,400 a year to $1-2,500.
Financial experts say the move will be a boost to the $6 trillion economy and could also lead to the greatest increase in scholarships in more than 40 years.
But the move could also see some students struggle to afford to attend college, with the average cost of attending an Australian university rising to $30,600.
“We are all going to struggle to get by with that, especially if you have to pay $3,500 a year for tuition and a couple of other costs,” finance expert Richard Ruggles said.
“You are going to be at a real disadvantage.”
The students are going up, but they are going down a long-term curve.
“Financial aid is already set to grow by about 10 per cent over the next two years as the Government aims to spend $2.4 billion to help students with tuition fees.”
Financial aid funding is a very difficult subject to measure,” Professor Ruggels said.”[It] is not really a subject that you can measure on a financial aid basis.
“There are so many other things you can look at.”
I think it is very important to remember that you have got to spend some money to get there.
“It is a great example of why we need to have more funds for universities, and how they should be funded.”
Finance Minister Mathias Cormann says he wants to see more financial support for students.
He said: “Financial aid and scholarship funding will continue to grow and support for the future will continue, both in terms of the financial assistance that is being provided and also the opportunities that we have to develop our students and provide them with an opportunity to get a better education.”
But financial aid expert Dr Alan Faucher said there were no guarantees that students would be able to pay their fees off.
“As students have shown in recent years, we have been seeing a rise in student debt and it has really hit many of our young people, particularly our young women,” he said.
But Mr Cormann said the Government would not abandon its support of the student loan.
Our priority is to ensure that student loan repayments are manageable, that our students have a good start in life, and that they get a good education.””
I’m not going to walk away from that support,” he told reporters.
“Our priority is to ensure that student loan repayments are manageable, that our students have a good start in life, and that they get a good education.”
Topics:financial-market,financial-trends,student-facilities,education,education-industry,government-and-politics,australiaFirst posted October 01, 2020 07:30:00Contact Amber Mottram