Laura belt: Access Officer
Hellooo! I’m Laura, a second-year student from Great Yarmouth, studying Human Social and Political Science, and I am the Access Officer for 2018! My role is all about helping to increase representation of those from disadvantaged and under-privileged backgrounds at Magdalene! I mainly coordinate college tours, school visits, residentials and outreach trips, working with students who - like me when I applied - know very little about life at Cambridge! I am here to help all those from disadvantaged backgrounds to realise their potential and breakdown the many myths around Cambridge to show it is a place that is accessible to everyone, irrespective of background.
If you have any questions about studying at Magdalene, please don’t hesitate to e-mail me - I would love to help, or you can visit our Ask a Student page.
The cost of financing university is something which many students are concerned about before starting their further studies, and there is often an assumption that studying at Cambridge may be more expensive than other universities. However, Cambridge currently charges the same tuition fees as the majority of UK universities, at £9,250 per year for home students.
In addition to this, Magdalene’s accommodation is reasonably priced with a price band system. Magdalene accommodates all its undergraduates for the duration of their degree, and all accommodation is all less than 2 minutes’ walk of College. Magdalene's central location also means that you have no transport costs. It is worth noting that you only pay for 30 weeks’ accommodation per year, in 3 instalments of 10 weeks spread across the terms. Please see our alternative prospectus for more information about food and accommodation costs within College.
Whilst students are strongly discouraged from having a part-time job during term time at Cambridge, our terms are shorter than most universities at 8 weeks each. This means students have plenty of time to earn money during the vacations, and there are many internships and placements advertised to students each year for the summer vacation in particular.
Throughout your time at Cambridge, bursaries such as the Newton Trust Bursary http://www.newtontrust.cam.ac.uk/ and other College hardship grants are on offer to help those students experiencing financial difficulties.
For more information about the financial side of life at Cambridge, you might like to look at the relevant section on the University website, http://www.cam.ac.uk/admissions/funding/ or the Magdalene website, http://www.magd.cam.ac.uk/financial-matters/
CUSU (Cambridge University Students’ Union) also runs its own Access schemes throughout the year, supported by the College JCR Access Officers.
For example, the Shadowing Scheme takes place in late January and early February every year. This is an opportunity for prospective applicants to spend three days (Thursday-Saturday) ‘shadowing’ a Cambridge student. You will be taken to lectures and supervisions (small-group teaching), as well as other talks, workshops and social events. This is a great way to experience life at the University of Cambridge before applying, and also to learn more about the course you intend to study. Applications for this usually open in November, and you can find out more information about the scheme at https://www.applytocambridge.com/shadowing/apply/.