From next year, undergraduate members of the Warwick Scholars program for disadvantaged students will be given free access to Warwick ‘Gym and Swim’ memberships as well as student sports clubs.
The decision was made by the University in response to a Cost of Living Survey run by the Students’ Union (SU).
69% of students surveyed said they could not afford to join a sports club at Warwick, and 60.3% reported that they had been forced to cut back on sports and fitness expenses due to the cost-of-living crisis.
The new scheme will provide free sports access for approximately 300 students.
Warwick Scholars is a program designed to help disadvantaged post-16 students get places at the university.
[Emma Birch, Warwick SU’s Vice President for Sports] will continue to challenge Warwick Sport on their prices and work with them to introduce a direct debit offer for their gym, swim, climbing & rackets memberships to better increase the access to sport at Warwick
Will Brewer, SU President
Students are nominated by teachers in the second half of Year 12 and are then given access to various sources of support from Warwick to help them attain their desired A-level grades, including one-on-one tutoring and revision boot camps over the holidays.
Other benefits of the program include discounted fees, accommodation bursaries, and priority access to careers support. At the undergraduate level, the university offers academic support, exclusive social events, and paid work opportunities.
The SU has stated that this will not be the end of their campaign for more affordable sports at Warwick. They have promised that Emma Birch, the current Vice President for Sports, “will continue to challenge Warwick Sport on their prices and work with them to introduce a direct debit offer for their gym, swim, climbing & rackets memberships to better increase the access to sport at Warwick.”
Warwick Sports’ prices previously came under fire in 2020, when students launched a petition to prevent the price of Sport Club Passes increasing by £10 and to request refunds for membership after sports facilities were shut down due to the pandemic.