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Advice and support to help you manage your money

Information for students on the Streatham and St Luke's Campuses

We know you may be feeling anxious about the rising cost of living, and managing your money at University. We have lots of information and advice to help you manage your finances, and we have support available if you’re struggling.

Tell us what you think

We realise that budgeting and cost saving can only go so far, and so you can keep getting the most out of your time with us at Exeter we’re continuing to look for more ways we can help support you through the cost of living crisis. We’re working together with all our campus partners to identify more practical help and opportunities where we can lessen the impact of rising costs on our students.

If you have ideas about ways we can do this, or suggestions for areas to explore, please let us know by giving your feedback through the feedback form on The Students’ Guild  website.

18 October 2022

 

Dear Students,

I do hope that the first few weeks of term have gone well. I wrote to you two weeks ago setting out the measures we had put in place to support you during the current Cost of Living crisis. I know that this is a time of financial uncertainty, and that this can cause us all to feel concerned, even anxious at times. We have therefore continued working on the development of a further package of support with your representatives from the Students’ Union in Cornwall and the Students’ Guild in Exeter, and I would like to extend my sincere thanks for their leadership and support on this issue. Last week I took these proposals to the University’s Council and I am pleased to say that these were approved.

My last message set out the help we have already put in place and below I am outlining the additional ways in which we will support you this year

  • At the heart of these measures is a one-off winter payment of £150, which will be paid to undergraduate home fee-paying students who have a declared annual household income of less than £30,000. These payments will be made automatically to eligible students.
  • All students, including those who have received the winter payment, can apply for additional support via our Hardship Fund, which may provide help if you are experiencing unexpected financial difficulties, or are unable to cover essential costs throughout the year. The Fund also offers specific bursaries including an IT bursary to help financially if you are struggling to afford computer equipment and support if you are unable to afford to pay for a diagnostic assessment (e.g. for Dyslexia). As mentioned in my previous email to you, we have added an additional £1 million to the Hardship Fund to increase the level of support we can provide this year.
  • The new package of support also includes measures to help you minimise your costs, for example, to ensure we always have a low-cost hot meal available for you on our campuses, a range of low-cost food options in our shops and warm places to go on campus to help if you are trying to save costs on fuel.
  • We have committed to the 13% rise in the PhD Stipend, having lobbied the UKRI to do the same. We have also added a further £250,000 to our Hardship Fund to provide support for self-funded PhD students who now find they are struggling financially.  
  • We are continuing to support the Students’ Union and the Students’ Guild in the provision of free sanitary products across all our campuses
  • Free healthy snacks are being introduced to our Hubs and Info Points
  • We understand how important it is to stay active, particularly to manage wellbeing, and so we have made available various free and low cost sports and gym sessions.  The Students' Guild has also extended its ‘Give it a Go’ scheme to enable you to try new activities at low cost.

Throughout this process we’ve been working very closely with your representatives from the Students’ Union in Cornwall and Students’ Guild in Exeter. We are all united in our desire to do what we can to help you at this time. Our Cost of Living Task Force continues to meet weekly to seek additional ways to offer support and I, and the senior leaders at the University, receive regular updates from them. We are also working on a package of support for University staff, who also face challenges, and we hope to be able to share details with them soon.

  • Remember that financial difficulties are also now included as a reason for seeking mitigation, for this academic year. You can read more about that change of policy on our web pages.
  • We’re working with the UK’s leading debt advice charity, Step Change, to provide you with free, impartial and personalised support for your money and debt worries. You can get help from them in the following ways:

Online: use the online debt help tool to get advice now.

By phone: call 0800 138 1111. Lines are open Monday to Friday 8am-8pm, and Saturdays 8am to 4pm. Please use their budget form before calling.

  • The Students’ Guild is running a Managing Your Money workshop every Monday this term. You can find out more and book your place here
  • You can get in touch with the brilliant Students’ Guild Advice Team run by the Students’ Guild. They are here to offer support.  

 

 Keeping in touch

We will continue to update you throughout this term. Don’t forget that we have a dedicated webpage which details our initiatives and the support you can get, from financial help to offers on our campuses. Do keep checking back as the page is updated regularly. We are also sharing updates via our weekly University Updates and our social media channels.

If you think there are other ways in which the University may be able to offer additional support, please share these with your representatives in the Students’ Guild in Exeter via this page www.exeterguild.com/costofliving.

 

Your wellbeing

If your finances are affecting your mental wellbeing, please do get in touch with our wellbeing service for support and guidance; they are here to help. You can reach them here

I know this is a worrying time but we will continue to look for ways in which we can support you. 

Best wishes,

Lisa

 

Professor Lisa Roberts

Vice-Chancellor

 

 


 

Previous messages from the Vice-Chancellor

Message from 6 October 2022

5 December

Great food deals on campus

There are lots of low-cost food options on campus:

Dish of the Day for £2 in Devonshire House, 11am – 2:30pm Monday – Friday 
£2.99 Super Savour baked potato with a topping in Cross Keys and La Touche
£2 sandwiches in the Forum Marketplace
20% off iSCA EATS pizza every day between 3pm & 5pm (in store only)
7 meals for £36 in catered halls - any meal, any day! Buy your card here.
Follow Eat and Shop on Instagram and Facebook for all the latest deals.

Stay warm on campus

If you’re looking for somewhere warm to study,or just hang out, and save money on your heating bills, the libraries in the Forum on Streatham campus and on St Luke’s are open for you 24/7 during term time. On St Luke’s, Giraffe House and Cross Keys also has 24/7 access but you’ll need to use your Unicard to access Cross Keys. See all our study spaces and opening times.

You can also find microwaves and hot water available for you to use in the following Hubs:

Queen's - located in the cafe space
Harrison - located in the cafe space
Building One - located in cafe space
Amory - located in the study area
Peter Chalk - located in the Hub

If you’re studying on campus, or travelling to and from home, at night please stay safe. See our safety pages for advice

Looking for part time work for the winter break or coming term?

If you’re looking to boost your income with casual work in the break, or alongside your studies, speak to Career Zone for help. From CV and interview support to job hunting and deciding which offer to accept, they can offer support in group sessions and one to one meetings to improve your chances of getting casual work. Contact them in person, by phone or on live chat so they can understand how best to help you.

If you're an international student you should always check your visa requirements for any restrictions to the hours and type of work that you can do.

Remember it’s important to balance any paid work with your studying, and make sure you’re getting some down time to rest and socialise, for your health and wellbeing. If you're finding this difficult, talk to your Personal Tutor or the Education Welfare team.

Managing your money - a budget workshop

Worried about money? Why not book onto a budget workshop, running every Monday during term time. The Students' Guild helps you tackle the fear and worry about managing your student finances and covering your bills, in this workshop full of practical and useful information. Book your place.


21 November

Get live concert tickets for a fiver!

One of the country’s top orchestras, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra (BSO) regularly performs at the Great Hall, and student tickets are only £5! The BSO plays a mixture of popular programmes like Smooth Classics (Friday 24 Nov) and performances of big orchestral works that make the hair on the back of your neck stand up! 

You can check out all their concerts on the BSO Live website and buy a student ticket in the stalls for just £5 with the code UoEStu22. (Offer excludes Star Wars concert, for which a 50% discount on full ticket prices applies for students.)

Super Savour Meals

To support you with the increasing pressures around the cost of living we are subsidising a number of hot meals within a ‘pop-up’ kitchen on the first floor in Devonshire House (next to Exehale).

For the remainder of the term you can grab some great ‘Super Savour’ meals including a hot dish of the day for £2. The area will be open from 11am – 2:30pm Monday – Friday.

Safe food hacks

Make the most of your food shopping without taking safety risks.

Don’t eat food after its use by date – cook it beforehand and freeze it for later use.

  • Let it cool down, put it in an airtight container or sealed bag and pop it in the freezer within 2 hours.
  • Label items with the contents and date (no more UFOs - Unidentified Frozen Objects!)
  • Save space by flat freezing: use a freezer bag instead of a container.

Search #SafeFoodHacks on social media for more ways to save time and money and get more advice on the Food Standards Agency website


14 November

Financial Support and Advice

So far this term we have already helped around 450 students whose financial situation was affecting their ability to study, through the Success for all Hardship Fund. We’ve also made a one-off £150 winter payment to support around 3340 of our eligible home undergraduates with known household incomes of £30,000 or less.

If you are struggling with the cost of living, or your household income has changed, the Students’ Guild Advice Team can help you make sure you’re getting all the funding you’re entitled to. Contact them here.

Worried about debt?

Don’t sweep it under the carpet. Waiting can make a debt problem worse. We’re working with the UK’s leading debt advice charity, Step Change, to provide you with free, impartial and personalised support for your money worries.

Click on their online debt help tool to get advice now. Call 0800 138 1111, 8am-8pm Monday to Friday, and 8am to 4pm Saturdays. Please use their budget form before calling.

Super Savour Meals

To support you with the increasing pressures around the cost of living we are subsidising a number of hot meals within a ‘pop-up’ kitchen on the first floor in Devonshire House (next to Exehale).

For the remainder of the term you can grab some great ‘Super Savour’ meals including a hot dish of the day for £2. The area will be open from 11am – 2:30pm Monday – Friday.


7 November

All-student talk with the Vice-Chancellor and your Students’ Guild President

Tuesday 15 November, 6:15pm, online.

Join Professor Lisa Roberts, Vice-Chancellor & Chief Executive, and Lily Margaroli, President of Exeter Students’ Guild, alongside Georgi Griskeviciene, Students’ Union President Exeter and senior colleagues for a talk and Q&A via Teams Live.

They’ll provide an update on the important issues this term, including how we’re working together to support you through the current cost of living crisis. There will also be the opportunity to ask questions.

Join the session here

Add this event to your calendar

Super savour meals

To support you with the increasing pressures around the cost of living we are subsidising a number of hot meals within a ‘pop-up’ kitchen on the first floor in Devonshire House (next to Exehale). For the remainder of the term you can grab some great ‘Super Savour’ meals including a hot dish of the day for £2. The area will be open from 11am – 2:30pm Monday – Friday.

Use your library

The library should stock the materials you need for your modules, so please use the library before buying books on your reading list. If you can’t find something you need and can’t find, ask us and we’ll do what we can to supply them.

We’ve removed library charges and fines for overdue recalled items. We hope this will help to support you as the cost of living rises. But please remember to return your books as soon as you can for the benefit of other students.

Not sure how the library works? Check out our get started guide.

Community cost of living advice

Get useful tips and handy resources for you to take away from the Community Engagement Team. They'll be in the Forum on Thursday 10 and Tuesday 22 November (between 10:30am – 2:30pm). Feel free to also come and share some of your own findings that may be beneficial to others.

Stay safe and warm

If you’re looking for somewhere warm to study and save money on your heating bills, the libraries in the Forum on Streatham campus and on St Luke’s are open for you 24/7. On St Luke’s, Giraffe House and Cross Keys also has 24/7 access but you’ll need to use your Unicard to access Cross Keys.

If you’re studying on campus, or travelling to and from home, at night please stay safe. Avoid travelling alone, try to stay with a group of friends if possible, and stick to busier and well-lit areas. In an emergency, call 999 or contact Estate Patrol if you’re on campus, through the SafeZone app or their emergency line 01392 722222.

Check in with SafeZone

Make sure you’ve downloaded the SafeZone app to quickly contact campus security should you need them when you’re on campus. If you’re staying late, or working alone or in hazardous areas, you can use the check in feature so that the team know where you are or the check in timer that raises an alert automatically if you get into difficulties and can’t use your phone.

Find out more about checking in on SafeZone.

Sport - Free Pitch up and Play sessions

Looking for ways to stay active while you study, but not keen to join a sports club or team? Check out the range of free Pitch Up and Play sessions run by Student Sport. From athletics and basketball to Jiu Jitsu and table tennis – there’s loads to do when it suits you.

Whether you’re just starting out at University or are returning to your studies, we have some tips to help you keep on top of your money. 

1. Consider opening a student bank account.

If you’re getting a maintenance loan you’ll need it to be paid into a bank account. Banks offer a range of different accounts with different benefits and incentives. Find out more about the types of account available at Money Helper or check out Money Saving Expert for their advice on choosing the best account for you.

2. Work out your budget

  • Look at your money and how long it needs to last you. If you’re receiving a maintenance loan it will come in 3 termly instalments.
  • Work out how much you need for all your essential contracted fixed costs, such as rent and your phone bill – make sure you can pay these first.
  • Next how much do you need to live and study – for food, books and transport?
  • Then look at what’s left for other things you want to do, and balance what you can afford.

The UCAS budget calculator may help you, or there are other free budgeting tools online.
And the Students’ Guild can help you with budgeting advice.

3. Make sure you’re getting all you’re entitled to

Depending on your circumstances you may be eligible for extra financial support, bursaries or benefits. For example, if you have caring responsibilities, need help to join a society, or need additional equipment to support your learning, there may be extra money available to you. Find out more in our Success For All Fund FAQs or ask your Students’ Guild Advice Service. 

4. Look out for deals and savings

Lots of places offer student discounts and special deals. Check out Save The Student for the latest deals and freebies out there. Consider shopping together with your housemates so you can make the most of 'Buy One Get One Free' deals and bulk buying economies of scale.

5. Up your income

Consider a part time job if you can fit it around your studies. Career Zone advertise part time jobs that can help you gain experience and earn money while studying. Save The Student has a whole host of other money making tips, from shopping on cashback sites to completing paid surveys.

6. Don’t be tempted to use loan sharks, illegal money lenders, or quick-money schemes that may not be legitimate

If you’re struggling you can apply to our Success for All Fund for help during your time at Exeter. 

7. Deal with your debt

Although it can be stressful, problems with debt only get worse if you ignore them. Talk to your creditors about your situation and try to negotiate an affordable payment plan. If you’re struggling with paying your tuition fees, or the rent on your University accommodation, talk to us. You can contact us through the Student Information Desk (SID).  You can get advice on managing your debt from your Student Union or Student Guild advice service, or from debt organisations such as Step Change or National Debtline.

7. Ask for help

If you’re worried about your money, or dealing with debt, don’t keep it to yourself.  Please speak to your Students’ Guild Advice Service. They can help find the right advice and support for you.  

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