Drunken_Panda
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Report Thread starter 6 years ago
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Hi

I have just been told by Student Finance that I have to fund the first year of my degree myself.

Directly before starting the degree this year, I completed a Cert of HE over 2 years. I was not told either on admission at the time or at any point after that it would affect my funding for Student Finance in future. Not only this, but upon starting my degree at Westminster, I was told that there was an 'oversight' when it came to the Tuition Fees not being paid, and all would be in order. Nothing more was thought of it until a couple of weeks ago when my uni card was blocked and I couldn't use the student portal. Then after calling Student Finance they said they would look into it, but got no notification regarding anything until calling back today, when they stated that they only paid for 4 years funding.

The University I'm at insists that all installments paid are in 3 stages throughout the year in lump sums. There is no way I could afford it and I'm actually struggling with day to day living expenses as it is. I have a poor credit history because of past events in my life and therefore getting a loan is out of the question. I am willing to work P/T to fund the tuition but obviously that will not help much when lump sum payments are required, and in any case I would only be able to pay small amounts per month.

I am legitimately livid at Birkbeck for what I consider brazen dishonesty. If I had known that SF would not be paying for the first year of my degree, I'd have done the Cert HE over one year (They were the ones that recommended I take it over 2!) I am also frustrated at all the other misinformation I had been given previously, even by Student Finance.

Any help would be much appreciated. Thank you.
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Mark Lee - SFE Official Adviser
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Hi there.

We need to take into consideration all students previous study when we are assessing for funding for a course. Your entitlement to funding for the new course would have been reduced by 2 years due to the initial course.

When your application is fully assessed by us we will issue an entitlement letter to show exactly what you have been given so your tuition fees should have shown as '0'

Full details on eligibility can be found here: http://bit.ly/1ykhtD5

Thanks.
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Drunken_Panda
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(Original post by Mark Lee - SFE Official Adviser)
Hi there.

We need to take into consideration all students previous study when we are assessing for funding for a course. Your entitlement to funding for the new course would have been reduced by 2 years due to the initial course.

When your application is fully assessed by us we will issue an entitlement letter to show exactly what you have been given so your tuition fees should have shown as '0'

Full details on eligibility can be found here: http://bit.ly/1ykhtD5

Thanks.
That was the case initially, notification was received that stated tuition fees were not to be paid. At the time this was because I accidently forgot to state on my application that I wanted Tuition Fees paid. I rectified that on the application and I believed all would be well. At a later date I received another letter from them in September stating that full tuition fees would be paid. This letter is the final written correspondence from them, and that letter is on the website.

I had no correspondence of any kind with/from them after that until my uni card was blocked earlier this month. At this point I called again, this time with assistance from a member of the finance department from my university. Again they said there was a mistake on their end, and as well as the problem being fixed an apology letter would be sent in my direction. It was only when I got no written correspondence for two weeks after that that I called up again, and they told me that I would have to pay the first years tuition.
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