Bursaries and Scholarships

While most students will already have a student loan in place by the time, they start university, there are other options available if you need an extra top up. Unlike loans, which need to be paid back once you’ve graduated and are earning a certain amount, bursaries and scholarships don’t need to be repaid. A bursary can be available due to personal circumstances of the student, such as how much their parents earn. On the other hand, a scholarship is usually available due to merit – if you show promise in a certain subject, you might be able to apply for a scholarship. Check out this list (https://www.thecompleteuniversityguide.co.uk/university-tuition-fees/other-financial-support/university-bursaries-and-scholarships/) of how to find out about bursaries and scholarships you might qualify to apply for. Also, for a list specific to Plymouth University, click here https://www.plymouth.ac.uk/study/fees/scholarships-bursaries-and-funding/bursaries

Also, there are specialist bursaries for students undertaking certain subjects. These include NHS bursaries, teacher training bursaries, social worker bursaries and more.

Support for Studying Abroad

If your course includes the option of studying abroad for a year, there might be financial support available for you. Erasmus (https://www.thecompleteuniversityguide.co.uk/international/erasmus/) is a well-known program that support students financially for their year abroad. Travel grants are also available to student who are looking to go abroad for their studies. Bear in mind that studying abroad is something that usually needs to be applied for in advance, and that there might be changes to the regulations after Brexit.

Emergency Help

A Hardship Fund is when a university can give emergency financial support if a student is at risk of dropping out of their studies due to financial issues. Click here (https://www.plymouth.ac.uk/study/fees/scholarships-bursaries-and-funding/bursaries) for details on Plymouth Uni’s student support fund. Help is unlikely to be granted if it is proved that the financial trouble has been the result of reckless over-spending, so this is another reason why it’s important to keep account to prove what you’ve been spending your money on. It’s not recommended that students (or anyone!) apply for a Payday Loan, as the extortionate interest charged on loans such as these can get people into serious financial trouble. If you have an overdraft, use this as your first port of call but don’t rely on it, and try to pay back the money as soon as possible or you’ll risk having much bigger costs in the future.


Getting into financial difficulties can end up in a downward spiral that costs some students their homes and their place at university. If you think you’re going to need help, don’t bottle it up – reach out for help as soon as possible to minimize damage. While many students experience financial difficulties at some time, there are plenty of options for getting yourself out of debt. If you’re looking for part-time work in Plymouth, check out this student jobs page. https://www.plymouth.ac.uk/student-life/your-studies/academic-services/careers-and-employability/student-jobs for local students.