"My parents paid for my rent and gave me a contribution for my food. However, paying for my social life and activities has been a bit of a struggle. I owe around pounds 7,000 at the moment.
"I didn't work at all for my first year, so in the summer vacation I spent 12 hours a day, six days a week working in a warehouse in Exeter, packing crates. I loved it. The people I worked with were great.
"It was quite a dull job, but so dull I didn't have to use much brain power and could at least daydream. I got about pounds 250 a week after tax.
"During term time I've been working for the `ents crew' in the student union, doing security at the `Lemmy', the student nightclub.
"I get around pounds 15 a night for basically telling people not to go out of the fire door, and it helps to stop me getting pissed on those nights."
Jill Alderson, 22, is in her third year of a BSc in rural environments at Trinity College, Carmarthen.
"I'm spending nine weeks this summer working for the Environment Agency in Wales, compiling the responses to planning documents.
"I'd already been for work experience there at Easter, and then I sent my CV into the agency and they rang me for an interview.
"There are two other students here working in different sections, but everyone in the office is really friendly and much younger than I'd expected. They're happy to explain anything you're not sure about. I love working here, and the job is very relevant to my course. I'm finding out about the area, about things like flood defence, conservation and air pollution, and what the Environment Agency is planning to do about them.
"I've learnt loads from reading the responses and talking to experts; it's giving me experience and helping me broaden what I've learnt on my course and apply it to everyday life.
"Ringing people up all the time and talking to them has also given me more confidence. And it's helped a lot with my bank balance. I would definitely like to work here when I leave."Reuse content