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Why am I not entitled to a maintence loan?

(17 Posts)
Foreverlexicon Mon 19-Jun-17 15:19:34

I have received back my student finance info and I am lodging an appeal but I'm not sure if I'm missing something here...

I'm 24 and estranged from my parents (my mum is dead and I havnt seen my father for 12 years who is now in prison for a long time).

I live with my partner who currently earns around 14k. I currently earn 15k but will obviously not be doing this job anymore once I'm doing my university. I will be doing some part time work but I'm not sure how much yet because it depends on how much time I need to devote to the course obviously! We rent.

I've been accepted to vet physio at BCA. On the website it states it is a full time 3 year honours degree.

Most of it is home based with 4 weeks at the university doing practical study. I was told at the interview to expect to be putting in full time hours at home so as far as I believe this is a full time degree, not an open university distant learning degree.

I have been offered my course fees paid but 0 maintence. I rang and their response was 'I have access to funds'

Well once I'm part time we're looking at having £1300 coming in per month. Then bills are as follows;
Rent - 950
Council tax - 140
Electric - 88
Water - 20
Internet - 20
Fuel (partner has a commute) - 200

It's just not possible. I thought with our joint income being so low I would be entitled to a decent maintence loan but it appears I'm going to get nothing which means I won't be able to attend university.

Does anyone know more about how this works? Are they counting this course as distance learning despite the fact that I can't study 40 hours a week and work 40 hours a week?

OP’s posts: |
titchy Mon 19-Jun-17 15:46:43

If you're studying at home it's a distance learning degree so I imagine that's the reason, regardless of the number of hours you're expected to put in.

ILookedintheWater Mon 19-Jun-17 15:55:50

You've picked a distance learning degree and have a household income of over 20K before tax, and no children.
Can you cut your outgoings by moving closer you your partner's work?
As a full time student I worked 20 hours a week in a bar term time and more in holidays so it is possible to work and study, albeit a really hard time. If you can cut commuting costs and make 80 a week yourself is it doable? It's a shame to give up your ambitions.

LooksBetterWithAFilter Mon 19-Jun-17 16:06:16

Is it classed as a distance learning degree or not. I am a full time student and I get a maintenance loan. Most of the modules are online modules very few actually have lectures but it is still classed as a full-time degree course.
Is the degree through a proper bricks university? I'd call them and ask their finance department because this has likely come up before. It could be because you are currently working full-time and they are taking this into account.

Foreverlexicon Mon 19-Jun-17 16:11:49

Rental increases kill the cost cutting of commute. Her salary will increase significantly after 2 years so it's not worth looking for a job closer to home either.

My point is though how can they look at my salary now? Because it won't be what I'll be earning once I'm studying. I do intend to still work but it simply won't cover all the bills. I havnt listed every little thing but I felt by working 2 days a week plus the maintence loan I wouldn't be far below what I have now but a big drop just won't be doable.

On the course website it's described as a blended learning course. It's not entirely distance such as an open university because I still have to go there for 4 weeks a year 😕

OP’s posts: |
Sofabitch Mon 19-Jun-17 16:15:27

They dont take into account the students income at all. I got a full grant/loan on a partner income of 16k so no idea why you aren't.

They only start reducing at 25k

So either your course doesn't count as an actual full time course or they have cocked up somewhere

Foreverlexicon Mon 19-Jun-17 16:16:49

Sorry cross posted

It's not one of the big universities - it's Berkshire College of agriculture, so mainly further education but they run 5 or 6 honours degrees. I'm waiting for call back from their finance team as we speak.

OP’s posts: |
Foreverlexicon Mon 19-Jun-17 16:20:00

Thanks Sofa

That's what I thought hence my surprise when I got the letter. Then I phoned and they simply said 'You have access to funds because you're both working' and I tried to explain I can't really work full time and study full time but was just told to lodge an appeal.

I'm wondering if there's been a mistake with my partner's income as if it was simply due to it being a distance course then I wouldn't be eligible at all and it wouldn't be up for debate?

OP’s posts: |
titchy Mon 19-Jun-17 16:23:13

It's because it's a distance learning course. Four weeks face to face doesn't change the fact that's it's predominantly a distance learning degree. Sorry.

Foreverlexicon Mon 19-Jun-17 16:44:57

Do you work in the industry?

It's advertised as a blended learning course. I guess I shan't be going then.
I can't really see how anyone can afford to study it if they expect people to work full time and study 40 hours a week.

I don't mean to sound snippy. Just highly disappointed as all the calculators I've used, all the research I've done said I would receive a maintence loan as 2 adults can't run a household in this area on that money and I do actually need to slee unfortunately.

OP’s posts: |
user1471516728 Wed 21-Jun-17 13:46:39

Distance learning unfortunately doesn't qualify for maintenance loans at the moment, it is on the cards in future but not for at least a few years.

Do they offer a part-time version of the course where perhaps you can keep your current job, or maybe look for an animal - related job where they may be more likely to allow you extra time off for study?

Sofabitch Wed 21-Jun-17 13:53:41

Why don't you sign up for a courde that isnt distance learning? Its not too late. And clearing is coming up

2014newme Wed 21-Jun-17 14:01:31

In reality you won't be studying 40 hours per week. And even if you were you could work evenings and weekends

Foreverlexicon Sun 09-Jul-17 17:33:43

Little update as I felt bad for getting a bit snappy.

I spoke to my uni who confirmed it's not a distance learning course, and finance did make a mistake. I now have confirmation of the full non-means tested maintence loan and a form with regards to me being a mature student due to death of mother and estranged father 😊

OP’s posts: |
Sofabitch Sun 09-Jul-17 22:33:51

Great news, glad its sorted for you

abilockhart Sun 09-Jul-17 22:57:09

Great news, Foreverlexicon.

GasLightShining Mon 10-Jul-17 13:31:45

Pleased you sorted it out.

My DD has applied for student finance. Although she is under 25 she is classed as self supporting as she has been working full time for a number of years.

She worked out how much loan she would get and was surprised that it was less. When she queried it turns out she put living at home as she lives with her boyfriend and isn't moving to halls. She should have put living away from home.

So always worth checking

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