Extra education funding after spike in applications

25.06.2020 - 11:02
Mynd með færslu
 Mynd: Björgvin Kolbeinsson - RÚV
Colleges and universities in Iceland will be guaranteed sufficient funding this autumn following a record number of applications from prospective students, according to a decision from the government this week.

University applications are up 23 percent between years and it is expected that there will be around 1,500 more university students next academic year than last. An extra 2,000 students are also expected at the country's higher education colleges, according to a statement from the education ministry.

The vice chancellor of the University of Akureyri told RÚV news on Friday that the school could be forced to reject up to half of applications unless extra funding can be provided by the authorities. The Ministry of Edication, Science & Culture has now confirmed that funding will be distributed as part of finance increase laws once the schools' precise financial needs become clear.

"It is clear that we are talking about a lot of additional funding, though the final sums will not be known until the schools' funding requirements have been assessed, final applicant numbers, and how much it will be possible to pay for from the reserve funds at the education and culture ministry," a written response from the ministry states.

Colleges and universities saw a spike in student numbers following the financial crash a decade ago and a similar response to increased unemployment seems to be happening during the current crisis. Prime minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir told The Week in Iceland last month that her government is very supportive of people turning unemployment into an opportunity to study for qualifications.

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Alexander Elliott
Project manager
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