Before today’s NUS-USI demonstration at Stormont, Alliance Youth Chair Stephen Martin has said that the introduction of variable fees could be devastating for students.
Stephen Martin said: “Under devolution, young people have the opportunity to directly lobby our own politicians who now have the ability to prevent yet another potential devastating change in our student funding regulations. I am delighted that NUS-USI are again taking the initiative on this vitally important issue and we would strongly support their call for an urgent independent review of student funding by the Stormont Executive.’
University of Ulster Alliance Chair Rory Kelly added, “The retention of the cap on tuition fees can only help to build future graduate communities and reinforce Northern Ireland ‘s position in a global economy through allowing fair and equal access to tertiary education for all.
“Removing the cap would lead to a regression of equal opportunity for Northern Ireland ‘s young people. Surely better access to further education can only help to alleviate problems that have been curtailing Northern Ireland for too long. Providing better options to the youth of tomorrow can only be addressed through allowing every young person, regardless of financial and social standing, to have the best options made available to their own personal desires post-secondary education. Lifting the cap on tuition will only seek to endorse a stigma of failure and apathy on the vibrant future of Northern Ireland .”