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It’s time to talk finance. Not the most exciting topic, we know, but it’s a necessary and important step in your lead up to starting university. We’re going to keep this as simple (and short) as possible.

First of all, where you live dictates who you need to apply to for student finance and what is available to you. The process may be different depending on this, so make sure you’re looking at the correct info from the get go. Below are the relevant websites you need to apply to and where you can find the most up to date information based on where you live. You’ll be able to find everything you need on these websites, from checking your eligibility for a loan to making the application.

Applying

We recommend applying for student finance as soon as applications open, as it can take a while to process and there’s usually a cut-off date to guarantee that you’ll receive funds in time for starting university. For example, Student Finance England can take up to six weeks to process your application, and you’ll need to apply to Student Finance England by 22nd May to receive funds in time for the start of your course. If you don’t live in England, we suggest checking the relevant website to find out when your application needs to be in by.

When you come to apply, you will usually need your passport (your birth certificate should do if you don’t have a passport, but you should check this on the relevant links above), your National Insurance number and a bank account in your name.

Top Tip:

Some banks offer student bank accounts, which usually have some pretty decent perks. From 0% interest overdrafts and overdrafts increasing with each year of study, to free railcards that you’d usually have to pay for to get you a third off rail travel, it’s well worth having a look around.

To qualify, you’ll usually need one of the following:

  • A UCAS confirmation letter with an unconditional offer or,
  • if your offer's conditional, A-Level results that meet that condition, or
  • a letter from the university you'll be attending confirming your place

Extra Help from Universities

Some universities offer additional financial support to their students, and at Shrewsbury this is something we do through bursaries and scholarships.

We have bursaries for full- and part-time students whose means tested household income is less than £25,000, and we also offer a cash award to Foundation Year students. This is automatically reviewed and you will be notified if eligible.

We also have a limited number of bursaries available for care leavers, young adult carers and estranged students. You can contact wellbeing@chester.ac.uk for further information.

For full and up-to-date details, about all of our bursaries and scholarships, please visit the Bursaries and Scholarships page.

Extra Help from the Government

The government offers financial help to students in many different circumstances. This currently includes students on a low income, students with children or dependent adults, disabled students, as well as medical, social work and teacher training students.

Take a look at the government website for more info.

Top Tip:

We’ve got one more tip for you – when you’ve looked into the loans, grants and bursaries you’re eligible to receive at university, try plotting out how that will work with your expenditures. Obviously, you won’t be able to account for everything at this stage, but looking into accommodation or travel costs and so on, will give you an idea of whether or not you may need to get a bit of extra cash coming in. Plenty of students have weekend or part-time jobs while they’re at university, it’s also a really good chance to get some experience in the working world while you study.

If you think a part-time job is something you’ll be interested in, it’s well worth having a look around at what opportunities are available in the local area, and if the universities you’ve chosen offer any help with looking for part-time work. Here at Shrewsbury, we help our students find part-time jobs that fit around their studies. Our UniJob service enables you to apply for jobs on campus, or you can use our CareerHub portal to find part-time work in the local area.

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