As thousands of students anxiously wait for their A-level examination results 2011 released on Thursday they face another crisis of whether they can afford to take a gap year out without crippling their budgets to increasing University fees.
With UCAS Clearing 2011 having only 40,000 available places up for grabs and a staggering 350,000 students all desperate to secure a place for their future, understandibly the odds of getting into a university is stacked against them.
A dilemma that will certainly end in heartbreak and untold disappointment for thousands of the country’s hard-working students.
So much will depend on a successful applicant when their A-level results 2011 are finally revealed and if they’re not the grades they were anticipating, what then?
Not only will they have to compete with their exam results for the meagre university places available but if successful will also have to face the tough decision of scrapping their gap year to enrol this year to prosper under tuition fees of Â£3,290 a year before the massive increase to Â£9,000 beginning in 2012.
Concerned Universities have begun ringing students to remind them that is they wish to take a gap year this year then they will have to face the prospect of graduating in debt of Â£56,000 compared to Â£27,000 debt if they sign up this year.
“Gap years are now a thing of the past.
“I can see them not exisitng.
“We have very few people actually wanting to defer.
“Any students that have chosen to defer we have actually called toremind them that there will be a hike in the fees and ask if they really want to defer.
“A couple have but very, very few”, said head of recruitment at the University of West London Clare Becket.
But founder of CAMPS International, Stuart Rees Jones said:
“It would be a terrible shame if travel and volunteer work become a life-style choice.
“If students don’t do a gap year there’s a risk they’ll have little to offer but a string of academic qualifications.
“What employers want are individuals.
“I have faith that future students will recognise this and want to do volunteer work.”