COVENTRY UNIVERSITY is starting to feel the strain of the Higher Education funding cut backs with further cuts of £135m and capped admissions means there will be fewer places available for a record numbers of applications.
Figures released today indicating that last year 160,000 people were rejected nationwide last year, a figure expected to rise as thousands of those reapply this year, adding further pressure to universities in the face of substantial financial cuts.
Coventry University’s Vice Chancellor, Professor Madeleine Atkins said: “Further cuts of £135m have been made to capital expenditure and to the Teaching Unit of Funding so that we are now facing a 12% cut over this year and the next two years. In addition student numbers for 2010 have been capped at last year’s level excluding the additional 10,000 places, and fines for over-recruitment are to be levied.
“These changes are in line with our expectations but will still be challenging. There may also be further cuts to vehicle loans to come in the April Budget and/or in the Budget following the General Election.”
The New Year has already been filled with bad news for students and universities. The latest announcements suggesting that students from middle-class families could be denied grants and may see their tuition fees increase by nearly £7000 a year. Professor Madeleine Atkins discussed the measures being taken to deal with the current cuts:
“To prepare us for this, I have seconded three of the Deans to work full-time from Jan 4 – July 31 with the Pro-Vice Chancellors on eight different work packages. These are focused on income generation, new and better ways of working and in enhancing the student experience. We want a successful and smooth journey as we meet the external challenges that we are facing.”
The University is at the start of a massive 15 year redevelopment project of the city centre campus and is pioneering a London campus project, both unaffected by the financial cut backs so far.