Student with laptop at Bezalel library 370.
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)
Israeli students finish their undergraduate studies with financial debts of
thousands of shekels, according to a survey conducted by the National Union of
It was presented at a session on the opening of the
academic year held by the Knesset Education Committee on
According to the survey, which was conducted among 9,000
respondents and is part of NUIS’ 2013 Student Survey, students in Israel in
2013, spend NIS 1,165 more than they earn each month. Back in 2009, the gap was
of only NIS 675 a month.
The report, showed that students experience a
yearly overdraft of about NIS 13,980, which comes up to NIS 41,940 across the
three years of undergraduate studies.
When it comes to medical or
engineering students, NUIS chairman Ori Reshtick explained, the gaps are even
The NUIS figures indicated that the monthly expenditures consist
of three main areas: livelihood, housing and studies.
spend an average of NIS 1,872 a month for living expenses, which include food,
transportation, health, communications, Internet access and
The housing expenses of students have gone up since last
year to an additional NIS 1,430, including rent, gas, electricity and municipal
Students’ studies represent the smallest expenditure, according to
the report, with only NIS 1,192 per month. This includes tuition payments and
other school related expenses such as textbooks.
As far as the incomes of
students in Israel, the main source is wages from work. About 78 percent of the
student population works while studying and earns an average of NIS 2,190 per
The next largest option had 55% receiving financial assistance
from their parents, which on average, amounts to NIS 700 per month.
least common option was that 49% had a scholarship, which brings them an average
of NIS 439 per month.
Reshtick however stressed that the data does not
include expenses that students experience before starting their studies such as
preparing and taking the psychometric exam, which costs over NIS 5,000. This
expense applies to some 86% of students.
“The cost of living is the main
problem students in Israel are facing and we expect that the Israeli government
will understand that the coming year is a crucial year for the issue of the cost
of living of the middle class in Israel and the student body in particular,”
Reshtick said during Monday’s session, which was attended by Education Minister
Shai Piron and Science and Technology Minister Yaakov Peri.
emphasized the need for the government to keep its promise to build 20,000
dormitories for students and observed that so far, resources were only allocated
for approximately 4,000 beds.
“Only 6.6% of students in Israel have a
dorm bed,” he said, “This is a drop in the ocean.”