100% rent rebate confirmed for students in University owned and nominated accommodation
The University today confirmed a 100% accommodation fee rebate for all University-operated and nominated student accommodation, covering an initial period from 11 January to 12 February 2021, for those students who have been asked by the Government not to return to campus and are therefore not using their rooms. Those on a meal package will also not be charged for the food element of their rent during this period.
This rebate period has been aligned with the current Government guidance in relation to travel restrictions and national lockdown. This remains a fast-moving situation and as such when Government guidance is updated, and in advance of 12 February, the position will be reviewed and shared with students.
Students will need to confirm that they are not in residence during that period to be eligible for the rebate and will be contacted shortly.
Students currently living in their University owned or nominated accommodation
The Government has identified a small group of taught subject areas that can return to campus study and placement activity from 4 January and where in-person teaching can continue, including: Medicine & Dentistry, subjects allied to medicine and health (including all branches of nursing and physiotherapy), Education (initial teacher training) and Social Work. In addition, and in exceptional circumstances, students who do not have access to alternative accommodation, facilities or study space or who need to return for health, wellbeing or safety reasons may return to their university.
There are still a number of students that are living in University-owned or allocated accommodation, and these students will continue to receive our services. Accommodation teams will continue to operate 24/7 and a number of our catering outlets across campus will continue to operate a take away service for students. We will be offering a free takeaway lunch in our accommodation every Wednesday for those who remain in halls (detail to follow on a separate email), as well as continuing to provide self-isolation support, ensuring that if students do have to self-isolate, they have access to grocery boxes, regular wellbeing check-ins and essential supplies.
Accommodation fee rebate FAQs
£10m Enhanced Student Hardship Fund
The University is also very aware that many students have suffered lost opportunities for part-time work, changes in family circumstances and a variety of additional costs as a result of the pandemic. In this academic year, the University will make available more than £10 million in student financial support – through awards that directly benefit and are directly paid to students.
More than 4,500 individual students will benefit from the Chamberlain Award this year – sharing more than £8.5 million between them. These awards support some of our most financially disadvantaged students: from low income households, under-represented groups and Care Leavers, with first instalments due to be paid by the end of January.
The University has also increased the value of its existing Student Support Fund to £1 million – and this is open to applications from all students. The Student Support Fund is a hardship fund - meaning that it is intended to support students who are experiencing genuine financial difficulties. In direct response to the circumstances of the pandemic, the application criteria have been changed and any students who have previously applied to the fund this year (or who have applications in progress) will be re-assessed under the new criteria automatically. All other students experiencing financial challenges this year are being encouraged to apply and this includes students who are living in private accommodation who are experiencing financial challenges, for example with living costs.