Whilst newspapers have been keen to highlight the falling admissions figures, it is hardly surprising. After all, it is exactly what the hundred of thousands of students who took to the streets to oppose the rise in tution fees warned against. It is simply confirming what we feared. Yet it is alarming that even departments at York are seeing the same levels in the drop in admissions; after all, as a top instituion surely we should be relatively impervious to a national downturn in applicants? It raises concerns that with our falling position in the league tables nationally , we may not be as attractive to prospective students faced with the burden of £9,000 fees.
It also shows that students across the board are hesitating to click that button that sends their UCAS form into the hands of those ever keen admissions tutors; finance now has to be factored into the decision to come to university, and it is unsurprising, though no less disheartening, that this is actively discouraging potential applicants. Of course, it is early days, so the picture is not completely bleak. But for the time being, we take no satisfaction in showing the government that, as we so predicted, university is now simply less inclusive.