COUNTING THE COSTS: Mak Akbar feels the cost of going to university in Australia.
COUNTING THE COSTS: Mak Akbar feels the cost of going to university in Australia. Chris Ison Rokcuni

Rocky uni student speaks out about living expense stress

WHEN Mak Akbar started university, it wasn't just the course work that caused a lot of stress.

For many students like Mak, the cost of a degree and living expenses can hit the hip pocket hard.

And the bad news is these costs look set to soar in the next decade.

The Australian Scholarships Group estimates yearly course costs will rise by 66%.

Regional students are expected to be hit hardest, with many forced to relocate for university.

It's estimated they will face more than double the living expenses of students living at home.

Mak, who is studying a Bachelor of Engineering specialising in mining, was forced to move from Mackay to Rockhampton for university.

He will soon face another move as he needs to transfer to the University of Queensland to finish the specialisation of his degree.

He said it wasn't just the course that was costly, but also textbooks costing up to $600 a semester.

Mak also had to spend $1500 on a laptop that supports specific engineering programs before starting university.

"It's a fair bit of money," Mak said. "It causes a little bit of worry, but HECS helps out.

"If I didn't have my parents supporting me as well I would definitely have struggled to pay for everything."

In the end, he said the hard work and high costs would pay off.

"Once I graduate and get a decent job all this cost would be very easily paid off," Mak said.


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