From the academic year 2012-2013, the government made major cuts in the budget available for higher education, causing the tuition fees for most bachelor courses to go from around £3,000 to over £8,500 a year. In the same year, there was a 17 per cent decrease in students starting higher education according to the Times Higher Education. Despite the fact the government offers students a loan to pay off the tens of thousands in debt they will have after three years at university, many students still depend on financial aid from their parents, both during and after university. And as it becomes more and more difficult for students with a bachelor degree to get a job in their field, more and more young people, especially those from poorer backgrounds are reluctant to go to university.

When the Prime Minister announced more cuts in public services to enforce the austerity plan the Tories introduced in 2010, he claimed the cuts would help the working man. “There is no such thing as government money. It’s your money – taxpayer money [..] Hard-working people’s money. The money that belongs to people who get up in the morning, come rain or shine, and put in a shift on the factory floor or in the office.” It turns out, however, that Cameron is making it harder for thousands of young people to get the proper education to end up on that office floor. Especially considering the current 6.6 per cent unemployment rate in the UK, and the fact that more and more employers require experience on top of relevant higher education, leaving university with a degree and an enormous debt is scary, and sometimes impossible for young people.

The fact that young people would probably require financial aid from their parents while they engage in unpaid internships to gain some very necessary experience, will seriously harm the economy. Typically, people with a degree earn more money, as they are more eligible to work in higher paid jobs. As more people decide not to go to university because of the high costs, the average income goes down, causing a decrease in welfare, as the average citizen does not have enough money to spend. Rich citizens will spend more money on Christmas presents and groceries, stimulating the economy, and paying tax for the government.

But society will suffer from the higher tuition fees, as this means rich families will stay rich, while poor families do not stand a chance. Higher education is more difficult to get into for poorer people because of the financial consequences. As only 20 per cent of white people live in low-income households, opposed to 50 per cent for black Africans, 60 per cent for Pakistanis, and 70 per cent for Bangladeshis, universities will see less and less people of ethnic minorities, causing a huge intellectual gap between white people, and people from other backgrounds in the UK.

The difference in income between white and non-white people causes a geographical, social and cultural segregation, which will divide the population almost entirely, and because of the higher tuition fees, this difference will only increase. The government claims that lowering taxes by using money from public services and higher education will benefit the working man, but in reality, it only benefits the rich in the country, and it destroys the future of potential ‘working men’, as well as the coherent society.

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