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AIT - 1916 Bursary Fund

AIT Logo1916 Bursary Fund

Information on the 1916 Bursary Application Form FAQs

Please read the information below carefully. Closing Date: Monday 20th May 2019

Late Applications cannot be accepted under any circumstance.

The 1916 Bursary Fund is a targeted funding scheme established by the Department of Education and Skills to support implementation of the National Plan for Equity of Access to Higher Education 2015-2019. The National Access Plan is working to increase the numbers of students who are currently under-represented in higher education. The Bursary is being offered to socio-economically disadvantaged undergraduate students commencing third level education in September 2019 for the first time - and will fund the entire duration of a student’s programme of study.

What higher education institutions will be awarding 1916 Bursaries?

All of the higher education institutions are awarding the Bursaries as regional clusters. The MEND cluster is made up of four higher education institutions - Dublin City University (DCU), Athlone Institute of Technology (AIT), Dundalk Institute of Technology (DkIT), and Maynooth University (MU). The MEND cluster have a total of 40 bursaries available to award to students applying to these higher education institutions.

Who are the 1916 Bursaries targeted at?

The Bursaries are targeted at students who are socio-economically disadvantaged and who are from one or more of the following socio-economic groups that have low participation rates in higher education:

• First time, mature student entrants;

• Students with a disability – particularly students with a physical/mobility impairment, students who are deaf/hard of hearing and students who are blind or have a visual impairment;

• Irish Travellers;

• Further education award holders;

• Lone parents in receipt of a means tested social welfare payment (at least 20% of the bursaries will be targeted at lone parents);

• Ethnic minorities (including programme refugees), children in the care of the State.

What does “Socio-Economically Disadvantaged” mean for the 1916 Bursary?

This term usually means that you live in an area of urban or rural disadvantage where not many people from that area go on to third level education by tradition or for financial reasons. You may have attended a DEIS (Delivering Equality of Opportunity in Schools) school. You may be a lone parent or have previously been in the Care of the State/Tusla. Your family income may mean that you are not able to go to college without financial help. You may be from a socio-economic group that is underrepresented in higher education. All of these factors, either individually or in combination, mean that you may have significant additional social and financial barriers making it difficult to access and succeed in higher education.

What is the value of a 1916 Bursary?

Each student who is awarded the 1916 Bursary will receive a bursary to the amount of €5,000 for each year of their undergraduate programme of study.

The bursary will be paid each year of the course up to a maximum of four years for full-time students and six years for part-time students as long as the recipient complies with the bursary guidelines and progresses to the next academic year of their course.

Application Form:

Potential applicants should read the eligibility criteria before applying.

Please find below a link to the 1916 Bursaries Application Form:

https://drive.google.com/open?id=14aV1RX2TXvE6SuY49YJodvDwMO_BygJVzhcAMbl0LRM

Who can apply for a 1916 Bursary?

• Students applying to Year 1 of an (undergraduate) programme in this academic year (2019/20) or repeating Year 1 due to a significant ‘life event’ which prevented successful completion of that year in a participating HEI.

• Students who are socio-economically disadvantaged and who are from one or more of the socio-economic groups that have low participation in higher education listed above.

• Students must be socio-economically disadvantaged regardless of the target group. Students must be able to demonstrate that they would qualify for the highest level of SUSI grant, i.e. income less than €23,500 in 2018. Applicants must be able to provide evidence of socio-economic disadvantage.

• Students must be applying for a full-time or part-time undergraduate course in a publicly funded institution that:

(a) takes not less than two years to complete,

And

(b) on the successful completion of which a student is awarded a major higher education and training award at level 6 or above on the National Framework of Qualifications.

• There is no restriction on programme of study.

Who cannot apply?

• Postgraduate students.

• Students who have already received a qualification at the same level.

• Students on a full-time or part-time undergraduate course in a publicly funded institution that takes less than two years to complete or on the successful completion of which a student is awarded a major higher education and training award at level 5 or below on the National Framework of Qualifications.

• Students whose income is assessed as over the maximum income limit, currently €23,500 gross for the family in 2018.

• Students in years other than First Year.

How will applications be prioritised?

As it is expected that the number of applications will exceed the number of bursaries available, priority will be given to those applicants who can provide evidence of membership of more than one of the categories listed, the significance and impact of the socio-economic disadvantage and the barriers experienced.

Eligibility for 1916 Bursary and SUSI Grant

Students will be entitled to hold the 1916 Bursary and the student grant simultaneously, where they meet the eligibility conditions of the student grant scheme. The 1916 Bursary will be an income disregard for the purposes of ‘reckonable income’ in the student grant scheme.

Eligibility for 1916 Bursary and other Scholarships

Applicants cannot hold the 1916 Bursary and other scholarships.

Data Sharing

Data sharing arrangements will be in place between AIT, DkIT, DCU and Maynooth University, subject to data protection considerations.

Application Dates:

The application process opens on Monday 1st April 2019 and closes at 4.00pm, Monday 20th May 2019.

Application Form

Applicants can complete an application for the 1916 Bursaries here. Reference should be submitted by 27th May 2019.

FAQs

1. What is MEND

MEND is the Midlands, East and North Dublin region, encompassing four higher education Institutions (HEIs): Athlone Institute of Technology (AIT); Dublin City University (DCU); Dundalk Institute of Technology (DkIT); and Maynooth University (MU).

2. Who can apply?

Detailed criteria are provided above. In summary, students applying to year 1 of an (undergraduate) programme in this academic year (2019/20), full or part-time, with a household income less than €23,500 in 2018, who are in the identified target groups, who are socio-economically disadvantaged and experiencing significant financial hardship, can apply.

3. What does “Socio-Economically Disadvantaged” mean for the 1916 Bursary?

This term usually means that you live in an area of urban or rural disadvantage where not many people from that area go on to third level education by tradition or for financial reasons. You may have attended a DEIS (Delivering Equality of Opportunity in Schools) school. Your family income may mean that you may not be able to go to college without financial help. You may be from a socio-economic group that is under-represented in higher education. All of these factors, either individually or often combine, to mean that you have additional social and financial barriers to accessing higher education.

4. Who cannot apply?

• Students in 2nd, 3rd or 4th year cannot apply. This bursary is for ‘entering’ First Year students only.

• Postgraduate students.

• Students who have already received a qualification at the same level.

• Students on a full-time or part-time undergraduate course in a publicly funded institution that takes less than two years to complete or on the successful completion of which a student is awarded a major higher education and training award at level 5 or below on the National Framework of Qualifications.

• Students whose income is assessed as over the maximum income limit, currently €23,500 gross for the family in 2018.

5. How do I apply?

Apply online here

6. Can I get the 1916 Bursary and SUSI?

The simple answer is Yes. If you are eligible and awarded SUSI and the Bursary you can keep both. The 1916 Bursary is not counted as income when assessing SUSI.

7. Can I get the 1916 Bursary and any other Scholarship or Grant?

No. You can get the 1916 Bursary with your SUSI, Social Welfare and you can apply for the Student Assistance Fund or Fund for Students with Disabilities, but not any other grant.

8. Will the Bursary affect my SUSI application?

The payment from the 1916 Bursary is not counted as income by SUSI.

9. Will the Bursary affect my Social Welfare payment?

No – the 1916 Bursary does not affect your means tested or other payments from Social Welfare.

10. Can I keep my Rent Allowance and Medical Card with the 1916 Bursary?

The Bursary should not be counted as income when you are being assessed for any means tested payments.

11. Can I apply for the Student Assistance Fund if I get the 1916 Bursary?

Yes, you can apply. Each institution will assess applications for the Student Assistance Fund using their own processes, so it is up to them if you are granted any funding.

12. Can I apply for the Fund for Students with Disabilities if I get the 1916 Bursary?

Yes you can apply. Each institution will assess applications for the Fund for Students with Disabilities using their own processes, so it is up to them if you are granted any funding.

13. How many Bursaries will be awarded?

The MEND region HEIs, as outlined above, have up to forty individual Bursaries depending on the applications. There are strict criteria that must be applied.

14. What is expected of me if I am awarded a 1916 Bursary?

You would be expected to keep within the rules and regulations of your institution.

You would be expected to agree to any assessment set out by your institution for your course.

You would be expected to agree to the department managing the 1916 Bursary confirming that you have passed each year of your course.

You would be expected to meet with a Student Advisor in your institution at least twice per year.

You may be asked to attend or be part of events organised by the institution to increase awareness of the 1916 Bursary. This is not compulsory. You will be required to sign the Student Contract if you are successful in your application.

15. I am a Postgraduate Student. Can I apply for the 1916 Bursary?

No. The 1916 Bursary is only open to entering and first year Undergraduate Students.

16. I am a continuing student. Can I apply for the 1916 Bursary?

No. The 1916 Bursary is only open to entering first year Undergraduate Students.

17. I am repeating a year. Can I apply?

Applications from those due to repeat Year 1 of their undergraduate programme will only be considered in cases where evidence is supplied that a significant life event was the reason for poor performance in the last academic year. Examples of such life events include major ill health which was certified at the time, pregnancy, bereavement in the immediate family.

18. If I am refused, can I appeal?

There are two grounds for appeal:

-That you believe there was an “administrative error in assessment” i.e. that you think a mistake was made when your application was being reviewed that lead to you not being awarded the Bursary.

-That you believe “insufficient weight was given to an aspect of your application” i.e. that all your circumstances were not taken into account when your application was being reviewed and something important was not considered about your personal situation.

The Appeals Form can be found HERE (Live from: Phase 1 - 3rd July to 12th July 2019; Phase 2 – 18th to 23rd October 2019).

There will be a Review and Appeals Panel to ensure your application was assessed fairly and in line with the criteria.

19. I have been awarded the 1916 Bursary. Can I repeat a year?

The 1916 Bursary cannot be paid for a repeat year unless the institution agrees that there were “exceptional circumstances” i.e. medical or personal reasons why you could not complete the year. You would be expected to provide written evidence of your illness or personal situation from a professional outside your family group. You would also be expected to work with the student supports within your institution during your difficulty and at a minimum have advised someone in your college that you have an issue ongoing.

20. I applied but was not successful in my application. Are there any other financial supports available?

Yes. Each institution has funds to support students experiencing financial hardship. The biggest fund available is the Student Assistance Fund. Further information on these supports are available here:

AIT: https://www.ait.ie/life-at-ait/your-finances

DCU: https://www.dcu.ie/students/finance/assistance_fund.shtml

DkIT: Application forms for the Student Assistant Fund (SAF) are available from Student Services reception.

Maynooth University: Email: student.budget@mu.ie

All students awarded the bursary will have to verify all claims made on application.

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