The Select Committee on Innovation, Universities and Skills published a paper last year, submitted by various actors in support of government funding for potential actors with existing university degrees. Tom was one of the contributors.

Tom Riley, LAMDA alumnus, currently starring in "The Vertical Hour" at the Royal Court Theatre

7.  "I have always wanted to be an actor, but upon leaving school, felt I lacked the life experience and the intellectual capacity to do the profession justice. I chose to take an English Literature degree in order to achieve this, with every intention of applying to drama school the minute I graduated, if I could afford it. The knowledge that there may be funding there to help me when the moment came kept my hopes alive.

8. "When I did eventually go to LAMDA, I realised that waiting was the right choice. I had used university to broaden my analytical skills, and as a base from which to start theatre companies, try my hand at directing, and to increase my life experience. It was from this ideal launch-pad that I was able to make the absolute best of what LAMDA had to offer in the three years that followed, and I truly believe it is the combination of the two institutions that has been responsible for my success since leaving drama school. I have worked pretty much non-stop in numerous films, television, and some of the greatest theatres in the country, and I am sure it is the unique mixture of an academic bent polished at university and the talents honed at LAMDA that have made me appealing to potential employers.

9. "I could not have afforded to go to drama school without the funding available to ELQs, and there's a strong chance my career would never have taken off. Withdrawing financial aid is a grave mistake which will undoubtedly affect the opportunity for some of Britain's most talented actors to fulfil their potential. As a consequence it may well prove highly damaging to the future of the arts in this country."

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