One of our readers asked us to do a special piece on financial aid in Ireland, and we thought – what a great idea. After all, many international students studying in Ireland find that they cannot do so without some form of financial assistance. If this is the case, there are several financial aid options for these students. We’ve compiled a short list of the types of financial aid in Ireland.
A limited number of scholarships for international students are available from the universities and colleges themselves. These scholarships are awarded solely at the discretion of the individual institutions that set down their own criteria for eligibility. To learn more about scholarships offered by your school, you are advised to contact the school directly. There are also scholarships available for other organizations – you can find a comprehensive list of available scholarships for study in Ireland on our Scholarship Search.
The student grant is the main source of financial assistance available from the Irish State for students enrolled in full-time Post Leaving Certificate Courses (PLCs) and full-time higher education undergraduate courses. Support is available to eligible students in most colleges in Ireland as well as eligible Irish students in many colleges in Northern Ireland, the UK, and other EU States. In Northern Ireland, the UK, and other EU States, an approved college is a college that provides higher education and training; the college must be maintained or assisted by recurrent public funds (i.e. a publicly funded institution).
The grant is intended for eligible students in order to help with the various costs of participating in further or higher education. Students enrolled in part-time courses, access or foundation courses (in higher education institutions), and short courses are not eligible to apply for a student grant. Family and/or personal income is a key factor that will be assessed when students apply for a student grant.
It is recommended that you apply for a student grant as early as possible. You do not have to wait until you receive an offer of a place or enroll in college.
Home Government Assistance
Many international students studying in Ireland are sponsored by their own governments or through other international scholarship programs. In most cases, applications should be made through the Ministry of Education in the student’s home country.