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Journalism students ‘struggling to sleep’ as cost-of-living crisis hits

Katherine BunsterJournalism students have warned classmates are “struggling to sleep” at night due to impact of the cost-of-living crisis on their studies.

Students have come forward to share their experiences of the issue amid fears inflation may put other would-be journalists from studying.

HTFP has reported in recent months how the crisis is affecting journalists in the regional press industry, with some having to either work off-patch or move 70 miles away from the area they cover due to the price of property.

Now, Essex Live has spoken to two journalism students at the University of Essex about how they and their classmates have been affected.

Second-year George Curley told the site: “I’ll stick out my course here for three years, but I don’t know if I’d recommend it to anyone to be honest.

“You have to think, is it worth the risk of coming to uni?”

He added: “Mentally, students can’t get to sleep at night because they don’t know when the next bill’s going to come in.”

Katherine Bunster, another second-year, had to return to her native Norway before recently finding work in a bakery close to the university’s campus, near Colchester.

Katerine, pictured, told Essex Live: “I was looking and praying that the groceries wouldn’t add up to more than £20 because I know that I wouldn’t be able to afford it.

“I went a lot to the reduced parts of supermarkets and I’m completely sure I must have gotten sick so many times from the veggies or the things being out of date and I’d still try to consume them because it was cheaper than buying new.”

She added: “I can’t live like a normal young adult.

“If I didn’t have the job I have I would be struggling to be honest because I wouldn’t be able to do all the normal things a person my age might do.”

The University of Essex told Essex Live it increasing its hardship fund from £489,000 to £1.5m.

It is also reducing the cost of essentials for sale in the Students’ Union, providing free food in weekly “warm spaces” and scrapping resit fees.

A university spokesperson added: “The cost-of-living crisis in the UK is impacting all of us and we are working really hard to support our students to still get the most from their university experience.”