#Students' Rights
University of St Andrews
United Kingdom

Fife Park has to be redeveloped by 2010, and it's not going to be cheap. Projected rents have been placed at a minimum of £97 per week. It's very unlikely that Fife Park will remain affordable, but that doesn't mean an end to affordable accommodation in St Andrews.

The University has said that it is determined to uphold its commitment to maintaining 500 affordable beds, but we don't think this is enough. We currently have approximately 750 affordable beds - if anything, this number should be increased, not decreased.

The Students' Association believes the University should increase its affordable housing commitment to a new level - 1,000 beds in the lowest quartile of UK student rents. We believe in a University that accepts only the best students, but are concerned that economic considerations currently act as a barrier to some excellent students from certain backgrounds. It's time for a change.

Do your bit in the campaign for more affordable accommodation and sign our petition. We're aiming for 1,000 signatures - one for every affordable bed.

This petition will be used as part of a larger report to be delivered to the University on affordable accommodation. This will include all kinds of figures on rent comparisons, excess demand for certain halls, and first preference choices for returning students.

We, the alumni of the University of St Andrews:

• Are concerned that students from less economically-privileged backgrounds may not have the means to study at St Andrews;

• Remind the University that it has been consistently identified as a poor performer in this regard by organisations such as the Sutton Trust;

• Note that accommodation represents the largest cost to most students studying at UK universities, and that there is now a significantly larger financial burden upon students at St Andrews than was the case only a few years ago;

• Recognise and welcome the University’s firm commitment to maintain 500 beds in the lowest quartile of UK student rents, but do not feel that a commitment to provide affordable accommodation to fewer than 1 in 12 students is sufficient;

• Understand that the replacement of Fife Park will decrease the provision of affordable University accommodation by approximately one third;

• Believe that any reduction in affordable accommodation would be a huge step backwards in terms of access, and would only act to perpetuate the image of St Andrews as a socially elitist institution;

• Call upon the University to provide, either by subsidising an existing hall or by providing means-tested bursaries, 1,000 beds in the lowest quartile of UK student rents;

• Remind the University that alumni are an important part of its fundraising strategy, and offer support in favour of the above proposal.

GoPetition respects your privacy.

The Alumni of the University of St Andrews for Affordable Accommodation petition to University of St Andrews was written by James Shield and is in the category Students' Rights at GoPetition.