Cambridge University to offer ‘dozens’ of poorer students free year of study

Dozens of students from disadvantaged backgrounds that fail to meet the grades will get a free year of study at the University of Cambridge in a bid to widen access, the vice chancellor has said. The Independent reports.

Stephen Toope outlined more details about the “transitional year” for poorer students that the institution announced earlier this week.

Speaking to the BBC Radio 4 Today programme, Professor Toope said Cambridge could not be an “excellent university” unless it was open to talent from every ethnicity in the UK and around the world.

The one-year foundation course – for talented underrepresented students who are given an offer but miss out on the grades – would not cost the students any money, the vice chancellor said.

“We are working with philanthropists to try to fund this programme so we have access to people who otherwise would not be able to come here for that extra year.”

He added: “We give them the opportunity to get a leg up, to work with some of our academics, to make sure that if they are finally admitted into Cambridge they are really ready for the programme.”

Lee Elliot Major, chief executive of social mobility charity Sutton Trust, said: “I think it is really good that these young people won’t be paying fees for that first year. I think that is a very positive thing.”

Read more Cambridge University to offer ‘dozens’ of poorer students free year of study

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