Stay safe online – Student Finance phishing scams

Student-Loans-Company-LogoThe Student Loans Company have advised that there has been a large number of phishing emails and text messages going to students from fake Student Finance Services and some look very authentic.

Phishing scams are very common around this time of year, so we advise you to be extra cautious. Please read more about phishing on the SLC website, or watch the You Tube video by Student Finance England.

Student Loans Company are committed to protecting students and their information. There are a number of steps which you can take to stay safe online, find out more on the SLC website.

BU team to deliver finance seminars after winning ESRC bid

A team from Bournemouth University has won a research bid to provide seminars addressing access to finance for small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

The seminars will bring together keynote speakers from academia, government agencies and industry in order to discuss the most pertinent issues of SME finance and of credit risk, with a view to develop new research and policy agendas relevant to lenders and regulators.

The Access to Finance for SMEs workshops will be delivered after a successful bid to the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), the UK’s leading research and training agency addressing economic and social concerns.

Lending to SMEs is at the top of the agenda for governments around the world. With various political and economic incentives introduced to support SMEs, it is important not to overlook the practicalities of institutional arrangements for access to finance, especially in the environment of prudent lending.

The project team consists of BU’s Professor Jens Hölscher (Principal Investigator), and Co-Investigators Professor Andrew Mullineux and Professor Dean Patton, with colleagues from the University of Brighton, Aston University and the University of Nottingham.

In addition, the project team will collaborate with Professor Andreas Horsch and his colleagues from the Technical University of Freiberg in Germany, who will contribute on access to finance from Germany.

BU Accounting Professor receives Lifetime Achievement Award


A Professor from Bournemouth University (BU) has received a prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award for the contribution she has made to the accounting and finance industry.

Stella Fearnley, a Professor in Accounting in BU’s Business School, received the award from the British Accounting and Finance Association (BAFA).

The Lifetime Achievement Award is given to individuals who have made a substantial or direct contribution to the UK accounting and finance industry through teaching, research or public service.

Stella, who has worked at BU since 2007, has published over 100 journals, books and articles – as well as speaking as part of various government committees looking at accounting and standards.

She said: “The award did come as a complete surprise for me because I don’t fit the stereotype role for an academic.

“As there are getting on for 300,000 accountants in this country, my passion has always been to do research which will be of value to practitioners and public policy, not just to other academics.

“I am paid mainly out of taxpayers’ money so society deserves to benefit from academic work. Besides which I have had a lot of fun.”

The award was given to Stella at the BAFA Annual Conference in London, but was also celebrated with an event at BU, attended by colleagues and industry representatives.

A tribute to Stella was given by Professor Jens Holscher, Head of the Accounting, Finance and Economics Department at BU.

He said: “What is unique about Stella is her close engagement with industry practice and regulation.

“This is a great achievement for not just the department or the Business School but for the whole institution.”

There was also a Question and Answer session with Stella, who spoke about her experiences and achievements, and gave her thoughts on the accounting and finance industries.

She said: “I have had a lot of fun interviewing people – I’ve worked very hard at chatting up the people at the top of the organisations, and making professional contacts to get access. They won’t do it unless they trust you.

“If you engage with businesses, you inevitably have fun. You engage with so many people that you come away having enjoyed it.”

Stella, who has become known for her quick wit and controversial comments about leading industry figures and bodies, added: “If you are going to be really rude about something, make them laugh. You can get away with it without insulting them too much, which is very important.”

This is the second major industry prize that she has won – in 2007, Stella was given the Wildman Medal Award by Deloitte and the American Accounting Association, which recognises leading edge research and innovative teaching methods.

BU pioneers pre-paid card to help bursary students manage finances


Bournemouth University (BU) students who receive bursary payments can now get their money on a pre-paid card, helping them better manage their finances and get cash back on purchases.

BU is the first university in England to introduce the Spree Student Cashback Cards, which allows users to only spend the total value of bursary payment pre-loaded onto the card – helping students avoid slipping into debt or expensive overdrafts.

They can also get up to 2 per cent cash back on purchases at well-known retailers, making their budget stretch even further.

Andrew Wright, Finance Operations Manager at BU, said: “We wanted to introduce a pre-paid card solution as research has shown that students want as much financial support as possible upfront.

“If you pay money to students in a cheque, some of that will be used up in their overdraft and bank charges. This is an opportunity to give them a new account where that doesn’t happen. You can’t get into debt with it.”

The scheme was launched last September, to distribute money allocated from the National Scholarship Programme (NSP), which has also been match-funded by the university.

So far, nearly 800 cards have been issued, with more than £362,000 given to students.

The chip and pin cards will last for the three or four years that a student is registered with the university, with payments made termly.

Students also have access to a web portal where they can check their balance and find out about special offers being held by retailers.

“Students can choose whether they want to have the cards, but the response so far has been very, very favourable,” said Andrew.

“The money is put onto the account within a couple of hours, and they like the fact that it is simple, they can get the cash back, and they don’t have to queue up or wait each term for their payment.”

“This is cutting-edge, innovative stuff, but it is all about the student experience.”

The Student Cashback Cards, provided by P&MM, can be used anywhere that accepts Mastercard, but cannot be used for cash withdrawal, gambling or to pay for content on adult websites.

It is hoped that the cards will also be made available to scholarship students next year, and that payments will be made in nine monthly installments to further help students with budgeting.

The Students’ Union at Bournemouth University (SUBU) was involved in the process of procuring and introducing the cards.

SUBU President Murray Simpson said: “The pre-loaded cards not only mean students can access their bursaries quickly and easily, it also means next year they will be able to access their payments monthly rather than termly.

“With the majority of rent payments happening monthly this will hopefully make life easier for students in managing their budgets.”

Key organisations to Business School recognised with ceremony

Key organisations with strong links to BU’s Business School were recognised at a presentation ceremony.

The Partners in Accounting and Finance Presentation Ceremony celebrated nine organisations which have key engagement with the Accounting, Finance and Economics framework.

Plaques were given to representatives from the organisations, as thanks for the input they have given as strategic partners, helping develop key employability skills in students and providing professional opportunities.

BU Vice-Chancellor Professor John Vinney opened the ceremony.

He said relationships such as these were at the heart of BU.

“Bournemouth University is immensely proud of its strong affiliations with businesses, organisations and professional bodies, at the local, regional, national and international level,” he said.

“[This] is a fantastic example of how the Business School engages with industry, ensuring that its courses are current and professionally relevant.”

The event was organised by Dr Phyllis Alexander, Framework Leader for Undergraduate Accounting and Finance courses at BU, and attended by the Mayors of Bournemouth and Poole.

The nine partners recognised at the ceremony were: the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA); EDF; J.P. Morgan; the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW); Mazars; Princecroft Willis; Santander Universities; Smith and Williamson; and the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA).

Representatives from the organisations spoke about the initiatives they have worked on with BU, which include running skills sessions and lectures and offering training contracts and placement opportunities, among others.

Lesley Fox, a partner at Mazars accountancy firm, which has offices in Poole, said: “We have been involved with BU for many years and in various ways.

“Over the years, we have offered training contracts and various placement opportunities and we talk in lectures about life as a Chartered Accountant.

“We are delighted to be involved and looking forward to exploring ways we can further develop our working relationship with the university.”

The event also featured a keynote speech about the challenges for future accounting and finance professionals by Ian Marshall, Chairman of Markel International and Senior Advisor to the Bank of England Prudential Regulatory Authority.

Dean of the Business School Professor Roger Palmer said that the School aimed to make graduates distinctive through their exceptional employability and that partners such as those recognised at the ceremony played a large part.

He said: “Our partners are invaluable in providing not only their time, but the relevant and largely intangible insight that will inform our students and increase further their employability, to the benefit of the parties involved, the profession and wider society.”

Student Loan Payments

If you are receiving funding from Student Finance England, your first payment will not be paid on the date on your Student Finance Letter.

The Student Loans Company will not release any funding until we have confirmed with them, that you are in attendance at Bournemouth University. We will confirm to the Student Loans Company of your attendance once you have fully enrolled on your course. Payment will then be made 3-5 working days after the attendance is confirmed.

Should you have any questions relating to this, please contact askBU on 01202 969696 or come and see us at The Base, opposite Poole House Reception.

Study and Work Abroad funding support available

Are you interested in studying or working abroad as part of your course or as an extracurricular activity? If so, the BU Global Horizons Fund and Santander Grants are two sources of financial support, which you may be able to access.
The Autumn application round for both the BU Global Horizons Fund and Santander Grants is now open! For more information, please visit the new Study & Work Abroad site on the Student Portal to learn about international activities BU may be able to support, how to apply, and when you would have to submit your application.
For any queries, please write directly to

BU student saving money in the Mail on Sunday

By Dean Eastmond

Students take note, being careful with your money really does pay off!

Fourth Year Advertising and Marketing Communications student, Garry Hendry, featured in The Mail on Sunday talking about how, by budgeting and performing a few sneaky tips and tricks, issues with finance are few and far between.

One of his tricks was moving £1,000 from his fee-free overdraft account into a tax-free ISA account; saving himself £19 just for moving his money around.

“It’s only £19 extra a year”, he added. “But in perspective that is a week’s food. It’s a trick for only the financially disciplined student”.

Another one of his tips was using cashback deals through TopCashBack, by using big brand online shops, he earns cashback on his purchase.

Hendry explains how he’s saved £500 over three years at Bournemouth University.

“Some of my cash back I use to offset the cost of monthly bills but most goes into a rainy-days saving account for the future”, Garry explains after receiving £80 and £120 pay-outs for switching his broadband and making the most of promotional offers such as Orange’s “Orange Wednesdays”.

“Every penny counts when you’re a student,” said Garry, showing that being careful with your money can help to make your time at university more manageable.

Dean is a student at Budmouth College in Weymouth, who is working at Bournemouth University in the Press and PR Department. He joined BU on a Sir Samuel Mico Scholarship, which provides 10 students from his college with essential work experience for four weeks over the summer.