Second years push for university loan shake up
A pair of students from the University of Law (ULaw) are petitioning the government to extend its university funding programme to the Legal Practice Course (LPC).
As of August this year, post-grads will be able to apply for up to £10,000 in government funding for their masters courses.
However, this new scheme doesn’t include the LPC. This is often self-funded by students or their parents, or funded by future employers.
ULaw Manchester second years Katie Lund and Hannah Pilkington don’t think this is fair, and in their new petition they explain why:
[I]f we wish to study the LPC in order to become a solicitor which we plan to combine with a masters degree (LLM) we will not be eligible for the government’s post graduate student loan. This came as a shock as if we were to study only the masters we would receive a loan of up to £10,000, however as it would be done at the same time as another course, which is needed to become a solicitor, we would not receive any of the loan and it would have to be purely self funded, which would involve taking out a professional loan with a high interest rate.
In setting up this petition, Lund, an aspiring criminal law solicitor, and Pilkington, who wants to specialise in private client work, are hoping to shine a light on this issue and drum up 100 signatures of support.
Speaking to Legal Cheek about her petition, which comes complete with a dashing photo of a gavel, Lund continued:
We just want to raise awareness of the situation and hopefully help future generations get into law without the financial struggle that we have had and will continue to have.
When we got in touch with ULaw, a spokesperson told us:
ULaw welcomes all opportunities to make studying law as accessible as possible and applaud our ULaw students for this campaign. It’s worth noting that for our part we currently do all we can by offering a loan of up to £25,000 via a loan provider to our postgraduate students as well as offering access to a £400,000 scholarship and bursary fund.