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Proof to cover living costs?

By Crissinda Ponder · Bankrate.com
Friday, January 25, 2013
Posted: 11 am ET

Proving you can pay for higher education is as easy as earning a scholarship, qualifying for a loan or -- for the supersavers -- tapping a college fund. But how do you prove to your institution that you have money to live?

That's what some students at a University of Oxford college are expected to do -- but one postgraduate student claims the rule discriminates, and he is taking the college to court.

According to BBC News, Damien Shannon is suing U.K.-based St. Hugh's College for allegedly denying him a spot in a yearlong course due to financial reasons.

"Poorer" students are required to provide a financial guarantee that they can afford the living costs associated with attending the college. Shannon had taken out a loan to cover his tuition and fees but could not prove he had access to more money -- about $20,400 -- to cover living costs.

He called the figure the college came up with "excessive" and added that it does not consider money that students may earn from part-time jobs they work while taking courses.

St. Hugh's College released a statement saying the financial guarantee requirement "is made clear to potential applicants" and that the University of Oxford has shed light on the "need for a postgraduate student loan system that will allow the brightest postgraduates to take up their places regardless of financial circumstances."

Should college students everywhere be required to prove they're wealthy enough to match their institution's standard of living?

Follow Crissinda on Twitter @CrissiPonder.

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