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Everything you need to know about scholarships and funding in Australia

It's always worth checking what financial options are open to you before moving your studies overseas. Source: Shutterstock

Earlier this year, ICEF Monitor reported that international student enrolments in Australia had soared to record heights.

In 2017, the land Down Under welcomed 600,000 foreign students to its world-class universities, drawn by the promise of sun, sea and globally-competitive study.

This means that a whopping 200 nationalities were represented across Australian university campuses, making up 44 percent of the nation’s total student population, and 15 percent more than numbers seen in 2016.

It’s the world’s third-most popular international student destination, and if you’re one who’s also keen to take the leap, you’re probably wanting to find out what kind of financial or scholarship schemes you could be eligible for.

Well, it’s time to gear up for a slice of bad news…

But it’s really not all doom and gloom – there ARE other options. Source: Giphy

Unfortunately, financial support options for non-native students looking to study in Australia are incredibly limited. If you’re from the UK or Ireland, note that your government doesn’t currently offer any bursaries or grants for any kind of international study. To add salt to the wound, you can’t use a UK loan to cover your study abroad experience, either.

Ultimately, you won’t be eligible for a student loan in Australia if you come from outside the country.

Pretty lame, huh?

You’ll need to have sufficient funds to cover your living and learning expenses. Source: Giphy

Part of your preparation before moving away should include working out your budget and expenses. If you’re heading to Australia, this means considering living costs (everything from the house you live in to the food you eat, and even the clothes on your back) on top of critical investments like health insurance, and of course, university tuition.

So, how much will you need?

The best thing you can do to gain a solid idea is check out your prospective university’s prospectus and application information. Cost of tuition will massively vary between institutions, but after a little rooting around, you’ll be able to find programme prices laid out by specific global regions (usually domestic/non-domestic; or specific to EU/UEA, etc.), so be sure to seek out the numbers relevant to you.

Some universities could be much cheaper than others, and the best thing you can do to find out for sure is call the institution’s Student Services desk where the staff can shed some light.

It’s also worth noting that cost of living in Australia changes from region to region. Living it large in the big city means you’ll likely pay more than friends living in smaller, more rural areas. Renting an apartment as a suave city slicker could be twice the price of your pal’s small town digs due to greater demand for housing in urban spaces.

To put this into perspective, Numbeo estimates the average cost of renting a 1-bedroom city centre apartment as of May 2018 to be AU$1,661.59, compared to a 1-bed flat a little out of the city that would sent you back AU$1,271.39. Numbeo is a great resource for prospective students,  giving you an insight into cost of living across the world, and allowing you to compare them city by city.

Dollar dollar bills, y’all. Source: Giphy

Just remember that budgeting is an endless process – there could be pricey situations that suddenly crop up you will have to factor in, so you need to make sure you’ll be financially stable enough to tackle these should these arise. That means heading on over to Aus with some extra cash in the kitty.

REMEMBER: Provided your course meets the region’s immigration requirements, you’ll be able to pursue 20-hours of part-time work every week while on your student visa (with the added perk of being able to work as much as you like throughout university holidays!). Part-time work can give a huge contribution towards your living costs, but it’s unlikely you’ll be able to earn enough to help out with your study fees…sorry!

Scholarships

To gain a comprehensive view of available scholarships in Australia, you need to be conducting your own research early on. It’s wise to do this long before submitting your application, ensuring you’ve explored every avenue before committing to the plunge.

On top of this, application deadlines for scholarships generally fall early on, and most require students to have their university place secured before even being eligible to apply. You don’t want to miss out because you didn’t know there was a deadline!

University Scholarships

Most scholarships are awarded directly from the university, so be sure to check out their websites to get a view of what’s on offer. In the mean time, here are a few university scholarships that might be worth your while:

General Scholarships

There are three state scholarship schemes open to students heading over to Australia – though take note that these are often exclusively open to postgraduate applicants.

  • The Endeavour Awards– this is a competitive, merit-based scheme offered by the Australian government. Applications close late June.
  • The Northcote Graduate Scholarships – an award distributed by the Britain-Australia Society. Applications close in late August.
  • The Leverhulme Trust Postgraduate Study Abroad Scholarships – open to anyone who’s been a UK resident for at least five years and holds a bachelor-level degree. Applications run from September to mid-January.

And that’s just about all, folks! Source: Giphy

So there you have it – everything you need to know about scholarships and funding in Australia. Now you best get out there and submit your applications.

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