Expectation vs. Reality: Just How Poor Are Students?

cs-finances

POT NOODLES, COLD HOMES AND RENT PAYMENT STRUGGLES ARE ALL TOO FAMILIAR, BUT IS THE ‘BROKE’ STUDENT MORE SERIOUS THAN WE REALISE? COULD THE DREADED GRADUATION DEBT BE A PROBLEM MUCH EARLIER THAN IT’S EXPECTED TO BE? ACCORDING TO HELP-LINK’S NEW CAMPAIGN REVEALING THE RISE OF THE SKINT STUDENT IT DEFINITELY COULD.

Expectations are that students live in a warm, modern house supported by their parents whilst they drunkenly stumble through the best years of their life. However, according to Help-Link’s Expectation VS. Reality campaign student life is far from what people perceive it to be.

In reality, money struggles are a far bigger problem, social lives are likely to be seriously suffering and a worrying lack of nutrients from food could be an underlying issue. Essentially, venturing off to university to gain independence and a whole new life might not be all its cracked up to be. Instead, an improvement of the university experience could be reliant on financial issues being addressed.

No idea how bad it really is? Here are some of Help-Link’s key findings that will show just how much the expectation of  being a student differs from the reality.

The Student House:

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The expectation:        

95% of students live in a warm home.

The reality: 

Just 5% of students live in a warm home.

Financial Worries:

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The expectation: 

Parents contribute an average of £179 a month to fund student lifestyle.

The reality: 

50% of students receive nothing (£0) a month from their parents to help towards their student lifestyle.

The expectation: 

1 in 5 students are financially stable with no money worries.

The reality: 

70% of students are skint and have survived in their overdraft.

Social Life:

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The expectation: 

A quarter of students go out more than 3 times a week.

The reality: 

The majority don’t go out more than once a week.

The expectation: 

30% of students see their childhood friends twice a month after moving away to attend university.

The reality: 

41% of students don’t see their childhood friends at all.

Food:

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The expectation: 

More than one quarter of students (27%) get a takeaway once a week.

The reality: 

36% of students can’t afford a takeaway at all.

The expectation: 

Students going to university go food shopping twice a week.

The reality: 

The majority go food shopping just once a week and spend an average of £16.40 each time.

It’s clear that financial problems are more prominent than most realise. From social lives to food consumption, how students are expected to live is far from how they do.

So there you have it, the reality of the “best years of our lives” compared to what they are expected to be all because of one little issue; money.