My name is Shaquille, I am a 24 year old male living in the UK. I am currently in my first year of university studying Primary Education. My dream is to become a primary school teacher and to inspire the youth.
I will now go onto outlining my situation:
1.) Before I applied to university I have previously studied at a different university but I ended up withdrawing off the course as this was not where my heart was. I was previously studying Biomedical Sciences.
2.) After this I took a long time out of university trying to decide where my true passion laid; it was after a while I knew becoming a primary school teacher was for me due to an endless amount of reasons.
3.) I ended up going back to college to do an "access" course which would enable me to go onto university to study Primary Education due to me having a maths and scientific background in subjects, but needed more subject knowledge in Psychology, Sociology etc.
4.) Prior going back to college I conversated with Student Finance England as I was unsure if I would be able to get funding if I was to go onto university due to previous study at the University which I withdrew from.
5.) I was assured on two separate occasions by their agents that due to the course that I will be studying, all previous study will be disregarded due to the reason of the course I will embark on includes a QTS (qualified teaching status) which overall counts as an exempt course; so all previous funding will be disregarded. I even called the second time to make sure of this as I always worry and was assured everything will go ahead.
6.) Going on from this I applied to university and was accepted to study the course of my dream.
7.) I have now been told by Student Finance that I have to pay these tuition fees myself. Upon finding this out I have spent hours and hours trying to solve this issue; involving me finding out why they have said this. The only response to my complaints are that there agents have made mistakes and they can only "apologise".
8.) this has made things very difficult for me as I am now liable in paying my fees to the university and they are expecting these payments ASAP. I have tried to outline my situation but have not got anywhere and am so stuck in what to do. The university read through my case and have said that they can only accept a payment plan which involved me having to pay 65% of my tuition fees up front which is 65% of £9500 = £6175 and then to take monthly payments of £810.
I receive a payment of £2700 on January 4th and may have some spare cash around but am in desperate need to be able to pay towards that first figure and additional extra as I am also in my own place and am so stuck as I have no work at the moment due to COVID-19
The worst part of the situation is that I did not put myself in this situation, if I was the one at fault I would accept it and move on but this was due to me being told false information on Student Finances' behalf but nothing can be done. They even admit that I was wrongly told but cannot do much about it due it needing to go through parliament. I have written to my local MP who is writing to the minister of education but he has said that the outcome is very unlikely of the situation being resolved and my fees being paid by Student Finance. I feel so hopeless as I have invested so much time in wanting to take an alternative route into a differing degree to my first one to be told this. I am fighting as hard as I can but it is feeling impossible to solve this. I have even contacted solicitors about this but they are not so positive on the outcome too. The stress of this is having an impact on myself and family around me as they cant help me much due to other issues they have ongoing. I appreciate any help you can give as it will bring me one step closer to achieving my dream. I will never forget the people who picked me up from this situation and will always be there for someone if things turn out good for me.