St George’s, University of London will charge new UK and EU students £9,000 a year in fees for undergraduate degrees and £6,000 a year for foundation degrees from September 2012.

To continue to support fair access to higher education, St George’s will increase its total spend on student support, outreach and retention activities to equate to more than 30 per cent of the additional income. This supplements university-led spend in this area of commitment and will provide extra support for students who may be considering dropping out of their studies at St George’s. It will also enable the university to work with more school pupils to inform them about higher education opportunities.

The new fee level and student support package will ensure that St George’s is able to replace reductions in government funding while continuing to deliver a consistently high standard of education to students from all backgrounds.

These plans were approved by the Office for Fair Access (OFFA) yesterday (11 July).

The new support scheme, which is expected to benefit around one quarter of students starting at St George’s in 2012, will include:

•    A £1,000 fee waiver, plus £1,000 towards the cost of halls of residence and £1,000 cash towards living expenses for all first-year students who receive the full means-tested maintenance grant (the National Scholarship Programme)
•    An additional means-tested bursary of between £100 and £500 for first-year students
•    A means-tested bursary of between £100 and £500 each year for students in their second year of study, and again in each year until they graduate

As well as more funding for student financial support, outreach and retention activities, a new strategic development fund is being established, dedicated to student-led investment in the student experience. Projects for funding may include enhancements to student services, sports facilities, Students’ Union support or additional skills training. Consultations with students will help determine where students will most value this investment. This fund is in addition to other university-led investments into the student experience including development of teaching facilities and innovative learning resources.

The St George’s principal, Professor Peter Kopelman, said:
 "The decision to charge £9,000 for degree-level courses was made following extensive discussion and in consultation with our students. We wish to continue to provide our students with an outstanding education in medicine, biomedical and healthcare sciences. Our programmes are expensive to deliver and we must maintain financial sustainability in this uncertain higher education environment.

“St George’s has a strong track record in opening up the professions to individuals from all backgrounds and we remain firmly committed to this. Our bursary scheme and investment in outreach and retention activities aim to ensure that financial constraints are not a barrier to education for anyone, from application to graduation.”