Without doubt COVID-19 has exposed significant weaknesses in the University system. But it is the way in which Universities have treated their students during this period that has made many question whether University is really for them.
For the last two month students have been cut adrift, with inadequate alternative provisions for lectures, tutorials, library facilities and reading materials and online support. Other sectors and industries adapted quickly using online conferencing from Zoom to Microsoft Team, but our academic institutions were slow to follow.
Whilst some have supported their students, the vast majority have not; leaving students up and down the country feeling let down and out of pocket, with no offer of refunds forthcoming.
We speak to Emily Bethell and Bronwen Kershaw, two second year students at two different universities as they both relay their alarming experiences.
A-Level student Jonathan Dawes, 17, and Member of the Welsh Youth Parliament reveals his survey result showing students have lost faith in University and won’t be applying this year.
Finally, Toby Young, General Secretary of the Free Speech Union, discussing the future of Universities and the path they need to take to survive - as he puts it ‘they are facing an existential threat’.