Universities offer a wide variety of support to students, as well as some tailored support to Care Leavers. As each university offers different support, it’s important when you are considering where to study to look at the support services that university has available.
Student Support Services
All universities offer student support, with different approaches and offers available at every institution. Support usually ranges from help if your financial situation changes suddenly, to assistance with deadlines to support with unexpected illness or bereavements, as well as typical counselling services and drop-in services for mental health support. Our partner institutions offer counselling services and extensive resources and workshops designed to help you look after your mental health while at university and to support you through your studies. When you Tick the Box on your UCAS application, this lets the universities you apply to know what extra support you might require to ensure you succeed and achieve to the best of your ability at university and ensures you set yourself up to begin university on a positive note. Even if you don’t think you will ever use the services, it’s a good idea to know what is available to you if your circumstances ever change. Some of the support available is covered below and you can get in touch with the universities you are interested in choosing to find out exactly what they can offer you!
Bursaries and Funding
As well as counselling and support services, there is extensive financial support available on top of the Student Loan that you are entitled to. Every university has different scholarships and bursaries available so make sure you apply for any you are eligible for. As a Care Leaver, there are bursaries at each of our partner institutions shown below that you are likely to be eligible for. When applying for Student Finance and Bursaries, as a Care Leaver you are considered an independent student and as such it is only your income that is considered in your application.
Durham Grant Scheme: £2000 per year of study if your household income is below £25,000/year.
Opportunity Scholarship: £2000 per year of study if your household income is below £25,000/year or a Care Leaver’s Bursary; more information available via email.
Care Leaver Bursary: £2000 per year of study for Care Leavers split across 2 payments/academic year.
University of Sunderland
We Care Scholarship: £2000 per year of study for Care Leavers.
Care Leaver Bursary: £1000 per year of study for Care Leavers.
Bursaries and Scholarships can change often and sometimes have to be applied for so check the institutions you are interested in applying to, to find out what you are eligible for.
Transitioning from FE to HE
There can be a big difference between studying at Further Education and Higher Education level. Moving from a Further Education setting, usually College or Sixth Form, to University can mean moving away from an area for the first time to somewhere different or living independently for the first time.
Although it might seem daunting, there are lots of things you can do to help prepare for this transition and when you arrive to help you settle in. You can contact your chosen university if you need any questions answered before you start or need some support with the transition process. Many universities will also offer tours and open days once you have made them your Firm choice to study there allowing you to ask any questions and learn your way around a little before you start. There are often also study skill sessions available to help you with the academic difference between Further Education and Higher Education and if you are moving to a university where you don’t know anyone or just want to meet some new people, look to join societies that you are interested in to meet people with similar interests and make new friends!