Please someone help.. Welsh second degree studying healthcare course in England

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moonandstars
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Can someone PLEASE help me I am absolutely sick of speaking to people on the phone.

I am Welsh studying an allied health proffesions course in England starting 2017. Due to the NHS bursary reform students now have to go through the normal student finance tuition and maintenance loan process, and I was informed that if you have a degree already they will now make an exception if you are studying certain courses (mine is on the list) and this is the link to the info regarding this on .gov.uk:

https://www.gov.uk/government/public...bursary-reform

As you can see there it gives a list of exceptions which my course is on. I phoned up student finance Wales two weeks ago who confirmed this is now the case so I can apply.

I went to apply to student finance Wales today however (as I am Welsh) and I was told on the phone that the rules are now different in Wales as of a week ago, so the degree exceptions do not apply (therefore because I already have a degree I can't get a tuition and maintenance loan) and the guy on the phone pointed out that there are still nhs funded courses in Wales (which is very frustrating because I am aware of this as I applied however I didn't get into a Welsh university)

I then phoned student finance England to see if they could shed some light, and they couldn't really, apart from advising that if I am a permanent resident in England I can get funding from student finance England (which I assume would mean delaying my course for 3 years and living in England for a while)

This situation is so draining as I self funded my first degree so have never applied for a loan and don't understand why everyone else in the UK can get a normal tuition and maintenance loan whereas I have to now pay £27,000 out of my own pocket with no help just because my nationality is Welsh but I am studying in England. I would also like to add that I am a mature student and due to personal circumstances this move to England for my degree will most likely be permanent and I will never return to Wales. Why am I being penalised?

Has anyone got a similar situation or can help in any way? noone can seem to give me an answer it's just a different door closed in my face every time.

Thank you
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LGHR
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Hey,

I am so glad one other person has experienced this because I feel like I am going mad. What is Wales doing? I had to call back up three times until I could accept this is what is happening.

I had a long conversation with someone a couple of months ago going through what I would be eligible for and how much my repayments would be etc. Only to call up a week ago when I have my offers confirmed to find out I can't get a second loan. Despite the fact that national policy is stating there must still be exceptions for second loans!!

I just don't understand and what makes it worse is there is absolutely NOTHING about this sudden change in policy on SFW's website or anywhere on the internet apart from this one comment. I am fortunate enough that I am also eligible for SFE to get a loan but my immediate thought when I had the phone conversation last week was what happens to Welsh residents who don't have this option, as most won't. I get that Wales wants to keep it's money within Wales but of course not everyone is going to get into Welsh Unis. I applied for Swansea and Cardiff and didn't get in. If I had, I would have got everything paid for as a grant. It is either all or nothing!

I would really appreciate it if SFW could apply to these posts and provide a link to any public documentation which confirms the Assemblies decision.

LGHR
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moonandstars
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Thank you so much for your response. It is so frustrating, I ended up emailing the complaints department for student finance who replied stating that due to the fact that i'm Welsh I will not get any funding for this second degree. They also stated that the information on the .Gov website is for "ENGLAND ONLY" even though I am studying in England, however unfortunately for me I was born Welsh. I find it so unfair that I am being penalised for my nationality and studying in England. I am now scraping together everything I can to get the £27,000 together for fees. I also self funded my first degree (back when fees were £10,500 for the 3 years) which I know makes no difference in the grand scheme of things but I do find that frustrating , that I have actually never had a loan from student finance Wales. I find it odd that the government have provided a solution for every other scenario other than those studying in England who are not English, they may still lose a large amount of mature students this way, as inevitably not every Welsh person who applies to Welsh unis will be offered a place. Do you mind me asking how you are eligible for the English funding is it because you currently live in England before your degree begins?

Thanks again and best of luck with the course
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moonandstars
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Following my last message you are right some clarity posted online would be great for Welsh students who don't know what to do next, SFW just told me no I have been given no options or information about where to get advice or if any grants are available for people in this situation. I've been left totally in the dark assuming I just have to pay my own way (and also not being given a lot of notice to do so as I was made to believe I would receive funding all along)
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LGHR
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I think over the next couple of months there will be more and more people raising issue with this. I am currently living in England (and have been for the last 3 years) so that's how I qualify for SFE, and probably wouldn't qualify for SFW to be honest, just didn't realise until I got offers and started looking at it all a bit more seriously. I wonder if after a couple of years other grants will materialise? This can't be sustainable. What are planning on studying? NHS degree? I am hoping to study midwifery...a degree which is massively populated by mature students where life experience is really important, so many applicants already have a degree.

Well done for complaining, I was planning on doing the same and potentially contacting my family home's local MP too....
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moonandstars
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Ah okay thank you for your response anyway I feel like i'm the only person in Wales having this problem like you said I can't find anything or anyone online! I really hope so, I was thinking of contacting my local MP as well i'm glad you've said that too as I wasn't sure if it would be useful - I think I definitely will now! I'm studying Physiotherapy, I will be 25 starting so it's a career change for me and I know when I went to interview it was pretty much 50/50 mature and young students. I have friends studying midwifery and like you said it is highly populated with mature students who can bring so much to a degree like this with their life experience. It's such a shame that people who get in to an English uni but not a Welsh one are going to face this now. Also I understand keeping money in Wales but what about people who need to move to England for personal/ family reasons! It's not fair to almost trap us financially we should have freedom to go where we want. It's all very frustrating. I'm going to contact anyone I can for some guidance and advice and update this thread in case anyone else turns up here who is also in this situation. Thank you
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chicksandducks
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(Original post by moonandstars)
Following my last message you are right some clarity posted online would be great for Welsh students who don't know what to do next, SFW just told me no I have been given no options or information about where to get advice or if any grants are available for people in this situation. I've been left totally in the dark assuming I just have to pay my own way (and also not being given a lot of notice to do so as I was made to believe I would receive funding all along)
I am in the same boat as you. I was led to believe that I would be eligible for funding to do midwifery but now it appears not. I have waited 12 years for this and after 2 cycles of applying got a place at an English uni only to find that now I can't afford to do it because I live in Wales. Have you had any luck finding out about other options?
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moonandstars
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(Original post by chicksandducks)
I am in the same boat as you. I was led to believe that I would be eligible for funding to do midwifery but now it appears not. I have waited 12 years for this and after 2 cycles of applying got a place at an English uni only to find that now I can't afford to do it because I live in Wales. Have you had any luck finding out about other options?
Hi there, so sorry to hear this it is honestly such an unfair situation , I feel in exactly the same boat I feel this is my only chance of a place as I didn't get into a Welsh university. I have looked everywhere for other options but to no avail. I actually emailed my local MP as well and his response was pretty pointless other than that he will "raise it" and "make this more clear on the student finance website". It's nice to speak to someone in the same boat I thought I was literally the only person. I've resorted to saving up as much as I can for years 2/3 and i'm taking out a bank loan for year 1 fees (the rates will be extortionate but it's literally my only option). If you don't mind me asking have you decided what you're going to do? Also if you have an email address feel free to send it to me and I can forward you the letter I received from the welsh MP I wrote to. Most people recommend scholarships and charitable organisations but most of them only accept 10% of applications and it's a one off payment of £500. Which is better than nothing but not really a dent in 27k :/ I wish you the best of luck with your course and really hope this silly lupehole is resolved before our 3 years are up
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HarlequinElle
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Hi there!

I'm about to start my application as Welsh person for a second degree in healthcare and I am now terrified that my dream is going to be taken away!
Has there been any news on this?

This is the information still on the SFW website:

"If you’re on a course which leads to a qualification in medicine, dentistry or healthcare then you might be able to get a bursary from NHS Wales.
If you’re a student studying an NHS funded course in Wales, you can get a Maintenance Loan of up to £3,392 in 2017/18 or up to £3,030 in 2016/17 from Student Finance Wales.
If you’re studying nursing, midwifery or healthcare in another part of the UK, on or after 1 August 2017, you won’t get an NHS bursary but you may be eligible for student finance from Student Finance Wales.
However, if you’re studying dental hygiene or dental therapy courses in England you may get an NHS bursary.
For more information, speak to your university or college, or visit NHS Wales."

Maybe they don't offer loans because Wales still qualifies for a bursary??

In a panic now!
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chicksandducks
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As it stands if you get a place in Wales and agree to work in Wales for 2 years after graduating, you will get funding, but if you get a place in England you won't since student finance wales are not funding tuition fees for healthcare degrees if you already have a degree. However..........if you are applying for 2018 entry then who knows! the Welsh system is expected to change for 2018 entry but they haven't given out eligibility details (check out the Diamond review). This year the Welsh Government only decided in December to keep the bursary but didn't make full details of Student Finance Wales funding public until March and at no point did the Welsh Government inform applicants going for a 2nd degree in healthcare that they would not be following UK government policy. Welsh Uni's are quite clued up on whats happening for them but I contacted my Uni in England and they said that they were still awaiting clarification from the Welsh Government about people in my situation. In the meantime they said writing to my MP was my best bet but advised me not to register on my course unless I have confirmation of funding. Good luck if you are just starting out on the application process but be prepared for a lot of uncertainty.
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elliemay921
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I am in the exact same boat too, led to believe I could access funding for a second degree in healthcare, only to find out because I live in Wales and want to study in England that I can't! It just seems there is no consistency or proper information out there, as the only place I have heard this information apart from on this thread is from my university who contacted me about it. I only found out a few days ago and have accepted my place and signed a contract for a house in England starting from the beginning of August, so feel really really screwed over by this situation! I applied to SFW in May and they had all my details yet I have only just been informed that apparently I'm not eligible, and to make it worse, they haven't even contacted me themselves, I found out from my university. SFW have actually processed my application as normal and sent me a letter detailing what I get paid and when.... but with all £0.00!!! They have not contacted my once to tell me there isn't funding for people in my position, which I think is appalling! Especially as there is no information to say otherwise anywhere else! I am so glad other people have found the same situation and it's not just me missing something big! Am now stuck in a pretty rubbish situation, I've been working towards starting this degree for over a year now and thought I'd finally managed to figure out what I'm doing with myself and now the world's biggest most frustrating spanner has just been thrown in the works, I'm not really sure what to do now
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chicksandducks
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Check your eligibility via student finance England. If you are being assessed on your finances (ie not parents) and you are a UK citizen you may be able to apply to them via a residence in England ie your new rental address. It's worth a try.
I have written to my MP who is now in discussion with my AM. My course doesn't start until January so I'm not giving up hope. Unfortunately Im not in a position to relocate to England otherwise I would.
All the best
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elliemay921
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(Original post by chicksandducks)
Check your eligibility via student finance England. If you are being assessed on your finances (ie not parents) and you are a UK citizen you may be able to apply to them via a residence in England ie your new rental address. It's worth a try.
I have written to my MP who is now in discussion with my AM. My course doesn't start until January so I'm not giving up hope. Unfortunately Im not in a position to relocate to England otherwise I would.
All the best
At the moment I'm still 24 but I know when you're 25 you become an independent student so if I can't get any funding from SFE this year I hopefully will be able to next year as I won't be assessed on my parents anymore and I'll have lived in my own privately rented accomodation in England for a year, since I'm stuck with a house now! Thanks for the advice
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moskjay
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Hi Guys. I find myself in the same position as all of you. A welsh student studying a nursing degree in an English Uni and this is a second degree. Initially back in August I was told I was not eligible for tuition support due to my course not being exempt previous study rules as I was studying in England. I then tried to transfer ownership of my account over to SFE as I actually reside in England now, and England would recognise previous study exemption.. but no I have to stay with Wales and now after 2 and a half months of going around in circles I’m back where I started and they’re re-assessing my application. How have people got on? Are SFW still not providing financial support to previous study exempt courses if you’re studying in England? I’ve been told my re-assessment will take 7 days, I’m not hopeful it’ll come back a positive response.
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chicksandducks
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hi, I wrote to my MP it was passed to the AM . I then got a reply from the Secretary of State essentially saying Wales have control of their education and health England didnt consult them so tough. According to him Wales has a better system that will ensure enough trained healthcare staff for Wales. I can't think what else to do so will need to refuse my place in England. Midwifery is so competitive and even more so in Wales and I was unsuccessful after interview at the Welsh unis for 2 years I don't think I can do it all again.
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moonandstars
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Hi all - there was no change for me but I am trying to plod along with the course at the moment managed to save up for my first year and take out a bank loan with a lot of support from my family luckily for the second year and will just face the third year when it comes. That is so unfair regarding the midwifery that you've had to leave a place behind that is so hard to get in the first place. This system is unfair in my opinion. Now that I'm here in uni there is also a scheme at my university to reimburse petrol costs to placement, which I was told about on the open day and I thought would be really useful for saving money that I don't already have! Then when I arrived at uni it turns out you need to be eligible for a student loan to get those costs reimbursed. So myself and 1 other student are the only ones in our cohort that can't. Very frustrating when there are also others in a cohort on a second degree but they are lucky enough to be English!
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moskjay
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(Original post by moonandstars)
Hi all - there was no change for me but I am trying to plod along with the course at the moment managed to save up for my first year and take out a bank loan with a lot of support from my family luckily for the second year and will just face the third year when it comes. That is so unfair regarding the midwifery that you've had to leave a place behind that is so hard to get in the first place. This system is unfair in my opinion. Now that I'm here in uni there is also a scheme at my university to reimburse petrol costs to placement, which I was told about on the open day and I thought would be really useful for saving money that I don't already have! Then when I arrived at uni it turns out you need to be eligible for a student loan to get those costs reimbursed. So myself and 1 other student are the only ones in our cohort that can't. Very frustrating when there are also others in a cohort on a second degree but they are lucky enough to be English!
Hey moonandstars who did you take out a bankloan with? I've been looking at future finance to fund my 1st year.. it's outragious the amount they're asking back but I enrolled on my first year whilst SLW were sorting themselves out to tell me they wouldnt fund me.. :-(
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te_amo
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This happened to me, I had to defer my course. I was so pissed off, mostly because of the lack of communication and information.
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An20
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(Original post by te_amo)
This happened to me, I had to defer my course. I was so pissed off, mostly because of the lack of communication and information.
Hi All,

just wondering if anyone had had any luck with their funding applications?

I am in the same boat - Welsh resident hoping to study a healthcare degree in England (as a second degree). The course is not offered in Wales so England is my only option. I am a mature student so would move their permenantly however SFW said I am not eligible for funding and SFE say I have to prove I have moved to England for work and then apply. I am able to move and could look for work in England however I am concerned about uprooting my life and finding out I am still not eligible for funding.

Anyone have any more info/ advice on this please? :-)
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Lucylulululu
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Hi there! I’m also in the same boat. I’m welsh and already have a degree in media and looking now to study Mental Health Nursing in wales. So I had a long chat with a woman on the phone about this just now from SFE and she said it was possible to do a transfer of ownership, so to prove that you’re not moving to England solely for the purpose of studying. So like prove your tenancy agreement, employer letter, bills etc. Student finance Wales said this needs to be proof 3 months before the academic year that I live in England.She said this is doable but will be up to the accessor if it is granted or not.. and I am also worried too if I go to all this effort and move to England, start work and get a tenancy agreement that I will then be rejected, I will actually cry so much haha. Let me know how you get on and if you have found any more info good luck xx
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