Over the past couple of decades, international students have been increasingly seen as cash cows by universities, colleges and the government; especially as cuts to education have increased.
This summer, thousands of students will attend their graduation ceremony which traditionally marks the completion of an undergraduate degree at university. But this ceremony is not just some innocent celebration of achievement. Finalists seem to regard it a "must do" event, something you can't afford not to do...
I am still finding it difficult to believe that I am no longer a student. My graduation last month passed me by in a blur of delighted congratulations and tearful good byes but the thing that most struck me was the realisation that a great deal of us graduates are not where we expected to be by this milestone.
With the end of the school term upon many of us and the summer holidays getting underway, pupils and educators alike will be looking forward to some respite from what can be one of the most intense periods in the academic year.
It's a budget of which young people and those working on the lowest incomes are the biggest victims. Don't let the piecemeal soundbite policies distract from that. It's a political master class in creating the perception of centrist policies while pursuing an ideologically right wing economic agenda that appeases those who turn out and vote, older people and the wealthy.
The outcome of this Hellenic crisis will probably stroll along, another five years and fifty summits later, sauntering with a glass of Ouzo in one hand and a kebab in the other. But whatever this outcome, Tsipras will be written into history, as either a political genius or an insolent and hot-headed fool. But even come the worst, at least the Captain can say he went down with his ship, hot head held high.
There are a multitude of misnomers in the English language. Koala bears aren't bears, jellyfish aren't fish and peanuts are legumes. The 2015 emergenc...
This could have been a good budget and one I would have welcomed, were it not for two announcements that made me see red: the pledge to scrap the Student Maintenance Grant and proposals to force lone parents of three and four year olds into work through the extension of the childcare voucher scheme.
By cutting maintenance grants and replacing them with higher loans, working class students with the lowest incomes will have even more to pay back... I worked long hours in part time jobs, got a credit card and I'm still in my overdraft - but I just about made it. When students are already struggling and support is cut further, how many will we lose?
You are the architect of your own experience and the master of your own direction. In that way, you will be making best use of the experience - not by looking at university as the best time you will ever have or feeling that going to university means that you are owed something after.
Starting out on the career ladder can take time, but once you secure your first job, it will be a lot easier to progress, either within the company or in another role. The job market has changed considerably since I started out but it's still just as important to approach your career with the right mindset, the right outlook and real drive.
Ever since Mum's diagnosis, we have tried to keep life as normal as possible and on the whole, I think we're doing a pretty good job. One thing that we constantly struggle with though, is planning. Despite what books and movies say, cancer is not linear or predictable, and Mum's has often proven even less predictable than most.
1. Don't underestimate how much your profile says about you. Your picture is the first thing someone sees, so if it's you on the beach or enjoying a cocktail, change it. It doesn't have to be taken by a professional, but you need to look like a professional in it
So yes: it is time for universities to do some serious reviews on what they offer to large segments of their students. But when one looks at the bigger picture rather than individual cases, studying at higher education institutions does remain a good investment in all fields when it comes to judging the return on students' investment.
If, as I predict, Muslims students feel increasingly pressurised, marginalised and excluded as a result of these new duties, then the law is likely to reinforce rather than counter the very same arguments that are used to justify the transition towards being radical and extreme.
We are in the midst of a higher education funding crisis. We are all losing out under the £9,000 model - we are, as £9,000 fee payers and so is the government, which has not saved money from this fee, but has lost money, due to the escalating loan default rates.