Keep childcare money in a different account and
only pay them when they bill you, that way, you get a bit of
interest on the money without risking spending it on other
What's your top tip for other student parents?
Live as close to the university as possible and get as much
childcare as you can afford. Establish a good relationship with
tutors and make them aware of your situation - they are there to
Why did you choose to go to university?
I was a single mother at 19 with no career prospects. I want to
be a teacher, so I went on an access course before doing my degree.
I hope to complete a PGCE.
What are the best bits of university life?
Meeting like-minded people and the fact that you feel like more
than just a mother. Being able to really achieve
What have been the biggest challenges?
Watching everyone go out and knowing you can't join them as you
have no babysitter, meeting deadlines when your child has chicken
pox, not being able to stay late to work as you have to pick your
child up. Not being able to attend Rag and other union events as
they don't cater for children.
How do you cope with money?
With great difficulty, as a single parent I was fine, but now I
am married I need to consider taking a year out. I have just been
informed we are £1300 over the limit so I lose all childcare
funding and Parents' Learning Allowance.
What do you wish you had known before you started?
That I needed to treat my degree like having a full time job
rather than a means to a social life. Crises can happen but the
staff at the university will help you pull through. You need a lot
How do you juggle your responsibilities?
With great difficulty! When I drop my son off, I get into 'work
mode' so I really focus on my work.
Where will you be in 10 years time?
I'll be in a professional job.
What are your top money management tips?
Put your money into a savings account as soon as you get it.
Limit yourself to a certain amount a week and transfer that amount
each week. Keep childcare money in a different account and only pay
them when they bill you, that way, you get a bit of interest on the
money without risking spending it on other stuff.