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EDITIONS
Monday, 25 November, 2002, 16:57 GMT
Students lapdance for fees
Lap dancing
Union says students are under financial pressure
Students are becoming lapdancers to pay their way through university, claims a student magazine.

The latest edition of the Bristol University magazine, Epigram, contains an account of a woman who is working in a lapdance club to raise money while she is studying.

"It's the latest form of employment for female students who are waving farewell to Sainsburys cashier checkouts and office photocopiers, and leaving a trail of work clothes behind them," says the article.

Eggs
A student at Bristol University is reported to have sold eggs to a US fertility clinic

Student hardship and the problem of student debt has been highlighted in debates over the future of university funding and controversial proposals to introduce top-up fees.

But the story presented in the student magazine shows a mixed picture of financial needs.

The student says she does not want to spend her university days in low-paying waitressing jobs.

But the motivation is not poverty, but because she wants to be able to pay her own way, alongside an older, better-off boyfriend.

Prostitution

The article claims that lap dancers can earn an average of around 250 to 300 per night.

The vice-president of the university students' union, Fiona Cook, said that it was another example of the financial pressures on students.

"People are having to go to greater and greater lengths to reduce debt," she said.

And she expressed concern for the safety of students who became lapdancers.

Ms Cook said that it was becoming difficult to shock people over student hardship. And she had heard of students at other universities who had been forced into prostitution to pay off debts.

One of the two female students selling eggs to a fertility clinic in the United States was also reported to be studying at Bristol University, she said.

The introduction of top-up fees would exacerbate the levels of debt and the money worries of students, she said.

Students were deeply hostile to top-up fees, she said, suggesting that a graduate tax would be preferred.

See also:

25 Nov 02 | Education
22 Nov 02 | Politics
22 Apr 02 | Education
29 Apr 01 | Education
26 Aug 01 | BH
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