FINANCIAL help is to be made available to more students.
The Government’s Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills has changed the means testing limits for non-repayable grants.
This means two thirds of students starting university in September 2008 will receive help, compared to just 51% now.
It was a move welcomed in Huddersfield by staff and students.
Before, a student’s annual family income had to be less than £18,360 for them to qualify for a full maintenance grant of £2,835 a year.
Under the new system, this threshold rises to £25,000.
For a partial grant, the family income must currently be no more than £39,305 – under the new rules, the limit will be £60,005.
The new system will see 100,000 extra students benefit each year.
Students only have to pay the loans back once they have graduated and are earning at least £15,000 a year.
Prof Michael Page, deputy vice-chancellor at Huddersfield University, said they welcomed the new grants system.
“The university welcomes the Government initiative to extend its support for students. In addition to this Government support, the university itself spends about £3.5m on non-repayable student grants and bursaries.
“For example, we will give all of our students who are eligible for the Government's maximum grant an additional non-repayable grant of £500 each per year – this is about half of our students.”
Students coming from care will get a grant of £2,000 to encourage more young people from this sector into university.
Fees for certain courses are also being dropped to persuade more people to opt for higher education.
Prof Page said: “We also reduce fees for part-time students and full-time ones that enrol on Foundation Degrees and Foundation years of full degrees.
“We do not charge students a fee who undertake a work placement year during their studies, because we believe this helps with their employment skills and gives the university the best record in the North of England for this type of course.”
Richard Lord, vice president of Huddersfield University Students’ Union, said more financial help would mean students would have to work less outside of university and could concentrate on their courses.
“We are fully supportive to such a campaign which allows more students to enter university without the financial burden.
“We have a lot of employers saying it is not necessarily just the course you do, but what you do outside in terms of activities and work experience that counts towards employability.
“Without having to work so much to make ends meet, students will have opportunities to join clubs and societies and gain more relevant work experience.”
Mr Lord said many students may not realise the level of help available to them and urged them to check out the DIUS’s DVD promoting the new funding packages.
It is also available to view online at www.direct.gov.uk/unimoney