Vice-Chancellor comments on Higher Education Funding Review Proposals

Speaking following the launch of the proposals of the Independent Review of Higher Education Funding and Student Finance, Professor Glynis Breakwell, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Bath, said:

“This review presents some radical proposals for future HE funding and clearly recognises the scale of the change and challenge that will be faced by individual institutions in the coming years.

"Our university system is world renowned in terms of the reputation, quality and impact of the teaching and research it provides. We must maintain that academic excellence and world class student experience whilst ensuring the system is affordable for all.

“If fees must be increased to protect the quality of the student experience we must ensure this can be achieved without damaging access for students from diverse backgrounds.

“This review strongly hints that we should expect big reductions in the public funding for teaching in the Government’s Comprehensive Spending Review next week.

“But it is vital that the prospect of long-term financial sustainability offered by Lord Browne’s recommendations is not undermined by swingeing cuts to other income streams that the sector relies upon.  

“If the recommendations are adopted by Government no-one will pay fees up front. Graduates, not students, will make a contribution to the cost of their higher education once they are in work.

“But students will quite rightly seek assurances from universities that the long-term investment they are being asked to make will be worthwhile in terms of future employability.

“At the University of Bath, the curriculum is informed by world class research, we offer an impressive range of national and international placement opportunities, and, as a result, a degree from the University of Bath offers excellent employment prospects - 81% of our employed first degree graduates secure jobs in the top three occupational groups, compared with 62% nationally.”

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