STUDENTS worried about university fees have the opportunity to gain a degree at a fraction of the cost.
Sunderland College is running several part-time degree courses which enable students to gain their qualification over four years at a cost of £8,400.
With universities charging up to £9,000 a year, this college route of higher ecucation could prove cost-effective.
Nigel Harrett, vice principal for curriculum and business development at Sunderland College said: “Degrees are valuable qualifications that enable students to progress further down their chosen career path, but inevitably fees are putting some people off.
“Not only that, but full-time study just isn’t an option for all students. Many work to support themselves while they study, or have family commitments.
“We’ve been looking at ways to address both of these and have created a new flexible way of learning, which means that our students can get a high quality, but great value, degree.”
Students can achieve a degree qualification by completing HNC and HND courses before going on to study a degree top-up course.
Nigel said: “We already have a number of students each year who successfully qualify to degree standard, but I’m hoping that the new four-year part-time course will encourage many more to study to this level.”
Two of the college’s students, Samantha Prescott, 26, and Nestah Masiiwa, 35, have just graduated with first class honours in tourism management.
Samantha, from Red House, said: “I’ve always had an interest in travel and tourism and the course has only helped confirm my passion for the industry.
“I would certainly recommend the course. We visited New York and all the lecturers were really supportive. I’m still deciding what I would like do in the future although it will certainly be something within the industry.”
Mike Renshaw, programme leader for travel and tourism at Sunderland College, said: “It’s a fantastic achievement and just shows that studying for a degree in this way does lead to top qualifications.”
For more information about higher education courses at the college visit www.citysun.ac.uk/higher-education.