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Summer jobs for students 'difficult to find'

Students trying to find work for the summer have found there are fewer jobs on offer, according to a poll.

Read: Students protest over cuts

Job centre
Seasonal work has been harder to come by, according to students. Credit: PA

The survey, commissioned by The Student Room website, found 79% of the 529 students quizzed thought there were very few summer jobs available.

However, around a fifth (19%) found it easy to find seasonal work to earn money to see them through the upcoming academic year.

Students were earning money by sorting through dirty clothes, dressing up as seafood and stuffing Christmas crackers, the poll found.

Nearly half (45.7%) said they would be working in the retail industry, more than a fifth (22.6%) said they would be working in hospitality, such as bars and restaurants, 15.1% said office work, 10.6% said they would be doing internships and the others had secured other types of work.

Read: Zero hours contracts 'to stay'

Student loan system 'out of control'

The Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) said the student loan system is "out of control" and in need of urgent review.

The government has made it hard for most medium-earning graduates to ever pay off their loans by trebling student fees, basing interest payments on RPI plus 3%and raising the minimum level at which they start to repay their loans.

The result, as the NAO report reveals, is an unbelievable accumulated debt of £200 billion in 30 years’ time. It is grossly unfair that some graduates will be saddled with paying all their lives to subsidiseother students’ debts because the authorities won’t be able to trace graduates who go abroad or move in and out of work.

– Martin Freedman, director of economic strategy at the ATL

Read: 'Over £5bn' in student loans unnaccounted for

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Hole in student loan repayments 'particularly troubling'

Former students who the Government has no financial record of are "particularly troubling" according to a tax think tank.

Robert Oxley from the Taxpayer's Alliance raised concerns the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) had already given up on finding the £5 billion in loans that was now unaccounted for.

He told Daybreak BIS often lost track of students who moved abroad, or former EU students and suggested the problem was already worse than thought.

A previous study about a year ago, suggests 40% of EU students, the department had no idea where they were and no idea how much they were going to pay back.

And that's why the department built into its own figures, it's not expecting 35% of that amount to be paid back. That's particularly troublesome at a time when cash is short.

– Robert Oxley of the Taxpayer's Alliance

Govt denies student loan repayments are a problem

The Department of Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) has denied it is failing to chase students who are not repaying loans, despite accusations over £5 billion is missing from the coffer.

A spokesman said the National Audit Office (NAO) report instead demonstrated their "effective and efficient process" for collecting repayments.

The report demonstrates that there is an effective and efficient process resulting in high collection rates at a low cost which we believe demonstrates good value for money.

We need to ensure that all borrowers who are earning over the relevant payment threshold are repaying their loans including those who have moved overseas after leaving their course.

We are continually improving the collection process for borrowers and we will carefully consider the NAO's recommendations as part of this programme.

– A spokesman for the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills

Overseas students behind '£100m' on loan repayments

A further 14,000 students now living abroad are behind on their repayments leaving a total debt of £100 million, according to the National Audit Office (NAO).

The NAO also found:

  • Outstanding students loans are forecast to quadruple from £46 billion to around £200 billion in today's prices by 2042.
  • At the same time, the number of borrowers due to repay is estimated to rise from three million in 2012/13 to 6.5 million in 2042.
  • More than a third (35%) of new loans taken out are not expected to be repaid, according to Government figures.
  • Around half of students are not expected to fully repay their debt.

Read more: 'Over £5bn' in student loans lost

'More than £5bn' in student loans 'missing'

Over £5bn in public money paid out in student loans is unaccounted for because the Government lacks up-to-date information about the recipients, a report by the spending watchdog suggests.

Graduates
The Department of Business, Innovation and Skills cannot find 368,000 former students, according to the spending watchdog. Credit: PA

The Business Department (BIS) is missing paperwork on employment or earnings for approximately 368,000 students, the National Audit Office found.

This could be because they are unemployed students living in the UK, EU students who have returned home or UK students who have moved overseas.

NAO head Amyas Morse said: "Given the expanding size of the student loan book, BIS now needs to take a more energetic and considered approach to maximizing the value of the loan book to the taxpayer and achieving a high level of collection performance."

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Government reforms have made university system 'fairer'

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills has released this statement ahead of a student protest against cuts to university funding:

The Government's reforms have made the university system fairer and more progressive.

Most students will not pay upfront to study; there are more generous loans, grants and bursaries for those poorer families and loans are only repaid once graduates have jobs and are earning over £21,000.

Students, like other citizens, have the right to participate in peaceful protest.

– Department for Business, Innovation and Skills spokesman

Placards ready for student demontration

Placards ready for today's student demenstration Credit: Twitter/@nusuk

The National Union of Students has tweeted these pictures of the placards that will be used on today's student demonstration in London.

As many as 10,000 students are expected to march to highlight the need for more investment in education and employment for young people.

Placards ready for today's student demenstration Credit: Twitter/@nusuk

Over 50,000 students protested in 2010

  • Some 200 people from the march occupied 30 Millbank – the building that houses the Conservative party's campaign headquarters – and a stand-off with police ensued.
  • Fourteen people – police and activists – were injured and police arrested 153 demonstrators.
  • Police in riot gear clashed with protesters, who had smashed windows and mounted the roof of the building.
  • The NUS distanced itself from the violence, with its president Aaron Porter saying he "absolutely condemned" the scenes.
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