Elite universities to receive extra funding

Britain’s top universities could soon receive extra government funding, according to the Observer newspaper.

According to the report, the prime minister wants to instil a “culture of charitable giving” among former students and wealthy investors by introducing a policy which would involve a government donation of £1 for every £2 donated up to a total of £2 million.

However it is believed that the new funding option will only become available to the top 75 universities in the country. The Times‘ university guide currently ranks Oxford in the number one spot, followed by Cambridge and Imperial College, London.
Under the proposed policy the University of Manchester, Britain’s first half-billion pound university with an income of £590 million, would be likely to receive extra funds while its neighbouring Manchester Metropolitan University, with an income in 2004/2005 of £172.8 million, would miss out on the bonuses.

Cash would be given to other universities to set up fundraising teams and current public funding of higher education institutes would not be reduced.

Speaking to the Observer, Oxford’s pro-vice-chancellor Jon Dellandrea said: “Our aspirations are high and we know that we have to get our levels of support up to highest achievers in the US, like Harvard and Yale.”

At Ivy League university Harvard nearly 70 per cent of students receive some form of financial aid while around 50 per cent received needs-based Harvard scholarship aid, available due to the university’s charitable income.

“This is an incentive to give. The amount of money raised here is not inconsequential; there are a small number of large benefactions from very rich people but not broad participation from alumni,” Mr Dellandrea added.