Search

Win a £100 Amazon voucher in this week’s Recorder

On sale today

Princess Royal hears about drop in mature students at Stratford conference

17:44 18 February 2014

Princess Anne attends a seminar for mature students at the Stratford campus of University of East London.

Princess Anne attends a seminar for mature students at the Stratford campus of University of East London.

Archant

Princess Anne today met students at a conference which raised concerns about the drop in mature students entering higher education.

At the event a leading expert in Higher Education from the University of East London warned that the virtual collapse in the number of mature student applications will continue unless urgent action is taken.

Professor John Storan is director of the Continuum Research Centre, based at the UEL, which is leading research into the impact of the decline on disadvantaged groups. He said: “Despite our efforts we’re facing a virtual collapse of applications from mature students. My biggest fear is that institutions will play safe focusing on traditional younger students rather than being more flexible and attracting mature students. This means one huge group won’t be able to enrich their lives or contribute effectively to the country. It’s a massive waste.”

The conference, which was held at University Square Stratford, also heard from Frank Harris who is studying criminology at UEL after spending the last 30 years in and out of jail. He said: “I began studying in prison, and after gaining GCSE English and Maths, felt confident enough to take two counselling courses. I want to help people because I have been helped so many times. My learning at UEL has empowered me and given me the belief that my future is in my hands.”

Professor John Joughin, UEL’s vice chancellor, said: “I’m very concerned by the drop in numbers nationally. At UEL we are doing all we can to recruit, encourage and support our mature students. We want to widen participation from groups which are often ignored. Mature students add to the richness of all universities, and their participation in Higher Education can be life-changing, is vital for social mobility and provides the advanced skills desperately needed by UK business and industry.”

Despite the effort of individual institutions and ability to get student loans, there has been a rapid decline in applications from 21 to 65 year olds. Over the past two years there has been a drop of at least 40%, according to Universities UK report on part-time HE.

0 comments

Latest News Stories

Yesterday, 16:00
Jack Eyers will be modelling at the event in Beckton

A disability catwalk will be taking place in Beckton this week.

University of East London
Yesterday, 12:00
Chidera Eze

Ambitious college students have the opportunity to take part in an exciting new initiative.

Newham College
Yesterday, 09:19
NHS Blood and Transplant team leader, senior sister Sheryl Sanderson, has appealed for new blood donors to sign up. Picture: Nigel Sutton

On any day, any one of us might need blood in an emergency - yet just one in 25 of us are registered to donate.

NHS
Yesterday, 09:11
Investigations journalist Emma Youle donates blood for the first time

Investigations journalist EMMA YOULE gives blood for the first time.

Most read news

Competitions

Good times with Greenall's!

Good times with Greenall’s, a Great British gin sponsors Great British racing.

Read more
Escape to the picturesque sights of Cornwall

Summer is finally here, and what is the number one holiday location in the UK during the warmer months? Cornwall, of course!

Read more

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Newham Recorder e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24


Our trusted business finder