Ok, so you're in the process of hunting down a scholarship, fee waiver or bursary, great! We hope you get what you need. In brief, a fee waiver means you'll get your fees (or part of them at least) paid by the university - nice! So what's a scholarship? Well, generally speaking, a scholarship means, because of academic excellence, there's a fund available with extra money to support you. Also nice! And a bursary? A bursary is kind of similar to a scholarship but is generally provided to students

Ok, so you're in the process of hunting down a scholarship, fee waiver or bursary, great! We hope you get what you need. In brief, a fee waiver means you'll get your fees (or part of them at least) paid by the university - nice! So what's a scholarship? Well, generally speaking, a scholarship means, because of academic excellence, there's a fund available with extra money to support you. Also nice! And a bursary? A bursary is kind of similar to a scholarship but is generally provided to students

Looking for a Scholarship More Finance Options

Posted in Undergraduate Finance Advice

Ok, so you’re in the process of hunting down a scholarship, fee waiver or bursary, great! We hope you get what you need.   In brief, a fee waiver means you’ll get your fees (or part of them at least) paid by the university – nice!  So what’s a scholarship? Well, generally speaking, a scholarship means, because of academic excellence, there’s a fund available with extra money to support you. Also nice! And a bursary? A bursary is kind of similar to a scholarship but is generally provided to students from low income backgrounds.  Great! And then of course, on top of your award, you’ll get your student loan to help you pay for living costs. Great, loads of money!

But hold on, regardless of the extra support you may be getting - feewaiver, scholarship or bursary – it’s still going to be a struggle so you still need to think of other types of finance. This is especially true if the support you’re getting is just a fee-waiver, we’ve not tying to under-play it, a fee waiver is worth a lot of money, but it won’t put any extra cash in your pocket whilst you’re studying.

Get a Bank Account

Ok, so this is pretty elementary – in order to get your loan, bursary or any other type of financial support, you’ll need a current account. As a UK undergraduate, you’ll be entitled to some great financial perks, including a free overdraft facility. It is advisable to take advantage of a free overdraft, if offered, because - even with that lovely load of extra money you might get awarded - you’re going to be pretty poor all the way through uni.

But be warned though; treat your overdraft as a contingency fund rather than as extra money in your pocket to go shopping /drinking with. Don’t end up nailing your overdraft in the first semester – who knows what unexpected horrors you might encounter and when you’ll need that money.

 For instance, you may still need a part-time job to keep you ticking over through uni but, in your final year it’s advisable to just concentrate on your studies. You could use your overdraft as a buffer so you can concentrate on your work. That’s a much more constructive way of utilising your overdraft than just blowing it and ending up with worse grades than you deserve.

Credit Cards

Similarly, you may want to consider taking out a Student Credit card. Credit cards are a great way to balance your income, in the short term. Credit cards are one of the most expensive types of credit available - don’t go maxing out your credit card in the first semester. Treat credit cards, again, as an emergency fund.

The best way is to think of a credit card is as a loan; use it when you need it. Then, when you’re back in the black, pay it all off. Rinsing your credit cards then paying the minimum payment each month is ridiculously expensive – you’ll never pay it off. And, if you miss any payments, could ruin your credit rating.

Any Other Support

When you apply for your Scholarship or fee-waiver, make sure you ask about any other financial support available. You may also be entitled to bursaries or other awards - check when you apply.

Matt M Jones