Masters 2.0

I have accepted the place on the MA Ensemble Theatre course at RBC starting in October.

Now after the fiasco last year (my reaction to which got picked up on by the college online account monitoring people), I am not in as strong a financial position as I was last year, so am having to plan out with much more care how I am going to pay for it.

I know how much it will cost me, and am attempting to persuade various family members to help me with it. This is not ideal, as I would rather not be in debt to the bank (loan), the government (undergraduate tuition fees) and every member of my family all at the same time. I think that the expense is worth it, otherwise I would not be putting myself or them through the effort of trying to work out how it will be paid for. This just means that the next few months will involve a lot of saving, scrimping, and avoiding any unnecessary expense more than I already do. I am pretty sure that it will not be a huge amount of fun, but the pay-off will be worth it.

One other thing I did discover today is that a person I went to school with, though they were in the year below me we did work together on at least one school play, is auditioning for a place on the same course. It would be quite strange if we both ended up doing the same MA (and she would be to my knowledge the 3rd person to go from Oakham to Bruford.

So that is the situation currently, and, as usual, it is all about the money.

Need a plan, and a whole pile of money

So, here it is:
I need to make up my mind by the end of March whether or not I am going to do the MA that I was originally planning on doing this year. There is no use going back over that whole debacle, but it does mean that I am in a bit of a bind this time round.

The main problem is this:
I don’t currently have the money to pay for it, let alone being able to afford another year of being a full time student.

I feel confident that I can actually do the course, and that it will be a good thing for me to do, as well as something which will be interesting, entertaining and a challenge. If money was not an issue, I would be able to take my place with confidence of doing well. But unfortunately, money is an issue.
I am currently paying £450 a month in rent, plus around £100 more in various bills – gas, electric, phone etc. On top of that, I have to pay out another £250 a month in loan repayments for the loan I took out to pay for the MA before that all went sideways. Then there will also be travel costs and stuff like that to get to college and back again. Overall, I have roughly budgeted that I will need about £1,000 a month to be able to pay for everything. The course is 13 months full time, so even if there will be some fluctuation on how heavy the workload is, and I am able to find a decent part-time job on top of High Society and CCM (both of which can be busy, can be dead), then I will need £12,000 over the duration of the course to pay for stuff.

Of course, on top of this there is the cost of the actual MA itself, which is, at the moment £8,400. That means an estimated overall cost of the year of £20,000 – which is a hell of a lot of money that I certainly don’t have.

Before I make the final decision, I am going to go and talk to Richard, who was the one that got me into the idea of doing the MA, and all of this stuff will be explained to him. In an ideal world, college would be willing to give me a bursary or some form of financial assistance to make it easier, especially since I am a graduate of RBC, got a 1st on my BA, and since they offered me a place, then didn’t tell me what was going on until after I had made financial commitments to pay for it back in September. I am not expecting anything, especially given recent public statements from Michael.

So I need to be able to find this money from somewhere. I am not sure where, but somewhere. If anyone who reads this has any ideas, feel free to drop them in the comments section.

The next 18 months of my life will be defined by a decision I need to make within the next couple of weeks, so I need to start figuring things out.