We need to talk about the hidden costs of uni

Snakes no longer hiss, they raise their coffee prices

Can we all just pause for a second and allow ourselves to drown in the thought we spend a considerable amount of time; how much money is uni costing me. But like really how much.

Even if you ignore the £9000 a year and the cost of your rent which is £5615 for a standard room in Endcliffe, that’s only part of the sum we’re spending each year, yet no one wants to talk about that. When the news, parent, grandparents remind you of the ever-scary fact of that £50,000 worth of debt you’re going to be stuck with after uni, they don’t consider all the extra money you’ve had to hand over during your time in education.

So much money for so little time

I’m a bitter English student. I have a timetable of only 9 hours which means every hour I spend in uni costs me around £42. For £42 I get one hour of talking; I don’t get a lab session where all my equipment and ingredients are included, I don’t get a hands-on workshop, sometimes I don’t even get anything but an email telling me that the lecture is cancelled so to go through the slides on MOLE. Multiply that by the couple hundred students in each lecture, and but I’m pretty sure uni staff aren’t getting £9000 an hour. Well, maybe the chancellor is…

I don't want to think about how much money is in this photo

I don't want to think about how much money is in this photo

Don’t talk to me about text books

When I keep hearing about degrees where you have to spend up to £80 on a textbook, I’m just out here wondering why I’m paying £9000 for teaching, when it so often feels like I’m paying for the right to be told what to buy to teach myself. In the last year I’ve spent £60 on anthologies that other years got for free, £30 on a complete works of Shakespeare that I have used once, god knows how much I’ve spent on numerous £10 novels, language text books, and poetry collections. Oh and last week I spent £10 on a booklet of photocopied paper because the department is broke…? I’m not gonna even talk about printing.

Stop raising the price of coffee, we need it to live

And maybe I should care less, but uni is definitely snaking us. We all have sparse timetables full of gaps, which means the uni cafes are always so rammed you can hardly get a seat, but then we get back from summer to find all the prices raised? Jessop West, hun, I love you but who are you trying to kid? Don’t try and act like you’re not just trying to increase your profit from students that don’t really have a choice but to spend £2.35 on a cappuccino just for a place to work for an hour or two. Yeah I’m still going to pay it but you know I’m going to be angry each and every time regardless of the number of points I get on my genius card.

Even having friends is expensive now

You already know that your subject society ball isn’t going to be worth £45, but you’ll still pay it because it’s part of uni life. On top of everything else we’re playing for club entry, drinks, new clothes, meals out, taxi fares, bus fares, train fares, which are also getting more and more expensive, because uni wouldn’t be right without a social life. Socials are getting pricier, bar one drinks prices are creeping up, people are trying to charge us £4 for a VK, no wonder we can’t escape our overdraft.

A hangover is no longer a hangover, it's a period of mourning for your bank balance.

How can we claim that uni is accessible when so much of the cost of uni life is left to come from our own pockets? Maybe there are bursaries and scholarships, but that’s just a chunk of what university actually costs, and with government cuts and rising prices it’s swiftly getting worse.