Living costs for college students is rapidly becoming the main issue of affordability. London is the most expensive city in the world, but compared to other London study abroad sites, such as those of Syracuse and Boston Universities, NYU students are paying almost double for living costs. Although tuition fees are high, this information is freely available for people to make an informed choice when they apply – the extra housing costs are a stealth cost paid by students with no transparency as to where this money goes.
Such high fees on top of tuition can lead to serious effects on mental health for students, and force people to work several jobs to get by, affecting academic performance – it is outrageous to overcharge students by more than £100 per week. The cost of the Global Network projects at the expense has been commented on extensively, but if NYU wants to continue to promote study away opportunities, it must not fund this by overcharging student for dorms. It is reasonable to expect that although tuition fees may fund wider NYU projects but housing costs should be for housing.
Part of President Andrew Hamilton’s recent affordability pledge was to increase “affordable housing” – if Urbanest was offered at cost (£280 per week) it would be cheaper than a quad room in Guilford House. Clearly there are other options available to an administration dedicated. BSN calls upon Andrew Hamilton to look into the matter of housing costs and aim for transparency in this before he can position himself as the “affordability president.” The issue is a big one, but here is one good place to start.