Studylink warns of loan de­lays

Central Leader - - NEWS -

Stu­dents are be­ing urged to get their loan ap­pli­ca­tions sorted be­fore the se­mes­ter starts or they risk de­layed pay­ments.

Peo­ple who have not yet ap­plied for their stu­dent loans or al­lowances may not get pay­ments when school be­gins, ac­cord­ing to the Min­istry of So­cial De­vel­op­ment.

Studylink sent out 570,000 emails and used text mes­sages, Face­book and Twit­ter to ad­vise stu­dents to ap­ply by De­cem­ber 16.

As­so­ci­ate min­is­ter Chester Bor­rows says over 90,000 peo­ple re­sponded to the call, which is a 46 per cent in­crease on the pre­vi­ous year.

‘‘But as at mid-Jan­uary there’s more than 60,000 stu­dents yet to ap­ply,’’ he says. ‘‘It’s im­por­tant that stu­dents un­der­stand that StudyLink is now en­ter­ing its busiest time.’’

At peak times it can take over eight weeks to fi­nalise an ap­pli­ca­tion, Mr Bor­rows says.

‘‘My mes­sage to stu­dents is sim­ple. StudyLink is there to help you, and the sooner you get your ap­pli­ca­tion in, the sooner they can do that,’’ he says.

‘‘Ev­ery day stu­dents de­lay only makes it harder for StudyLink to get them their right en­ti­tle­ment on day one.’’

Get or­gan­ised: It will be a diet of baked beans in 2014 for stu­dents who haven’t ap­plied for loans or al­lowances.

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