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ATSA Pleased With Govt Step Up Programme

ATSA Pleased With Govt Step Up Programme

The Aotearoa Tertiary Students Association is pleased that the government is addressing the issues of fees for some students through the ‘Step Up’ programme.

However the fact remains that students are going into debt to pay living expenses and are still the only group within New Zealand that currently does this.

The ‘Step up’ scholarships are excellent. The scholarships address two problem areas in New Zealand that of the ‘Brain Drain’ and ensuring that significant gaps in the workforce in human health, particularly in rural areas is being dealt with. Julie Pettett, President of ATSA says.

As such the bonding arrangement is a fine solution but this should not detract from the fact that a large portion of the current $6 billion loan debt is made up of living expenses.

“We applaud the government for addressing these issues, but restate our belief that a universal living allowance for students that is at least comparable to the unemployment benefit must be a result of the long waited for student support review.” Pettett says.

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