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Youth Allowance helping more local students to learn

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Thursday 10 January 2013

Youth Allowance helping more local students to learn

Students in Wakefield are among the record number of students now receiving financial support from the Gillard Government to go to university.

Federal Member for Wakefield, Nick Champion said new data shows that 967 university students in the electorate were receiving Youth Allowance in 2012.

This Is an increase of 21% per cent on the same period in 2011 when 799 university students in Wakefield received Youth Allowance.

Nationally, more than 207,000 Australians received Youth Allowance payments in 2012 to help them access university, an eight per cent jump up from 192,000 students in 2011.

“The Gillard Government’s student support payments are helping people from all walks of life to study at university and access high skill, high paying jobs,” Nick Champion said.

“Labor has transformed the higher education sector to ensure a student’s bank balance or postcode does not hamper their ability to pursue tertiary education.”

“We are making sure that more Australians have access to the qualifications they need to take up the jobs of today and tomorrow.”

Nick Champion said local university students paid Youth Allowance receive Student Start-up Scholarships to help with the upfront costs of educations such as textbooks, stationary, computers and internet connections, paid in two instalments a year of $1025.

“This is about helping students with the upfront costs of the books, technology and internet access they need to complete their education successfully,” Nick Champion said.

“The upfront costs of an education can be a disincentive for many people, and these scholarships are helping to change that.”

Nick Champion said support for students was under attack by Tony Abbott.

Last month, Opposition spokesperson, Brett Mason, confirmed the Coalition will cut student support payments, including the Student Start-up Scholarship, meaning only those students from wealthy backgrounds will be able to afford to go to university.

"The Coalition will scrap student support and make it harder for students who have to overcome significant barriers to attend university,” Nick Champion said.

“That means students who have the ability and desire, but not the bank balance, will be denied the chance of a higher education.”

Media Contact: Mathew Werfel 8284 2422 - 0417 805 384

Media Release Nick Champion MP Federal Member for Wakefield