Care Leavers & Estranged Students
If you are student who is estranged from your parents or guardians and are concerned about studying without the support of a family network please contact Student Funding Advice in Student Support. They can offer advice and guidance for applying for independent status from Student Finance England, assess whether you might be eligible for a Care Leavers or Estranged Student Bursary and help with other financial concerns. You may also wish to visit www.standalone.org.uk which is a charity that offers support and guidance for estrangement.
Care Leavers Support
The University is committed to supporting students who are in or leaving care, before and throughout their higher education studies.
The University provides the following support:
- a dedicated, named adviser
- individual visits and meetings with you and your Personal Adviser/Carer prior to arrival
- help with completing your UCAS application form
- help with applying for student finance
- campus accommodation 365 days of the year for the duration of your studies
- a university grant of £2,000 per annum for Care Leavers and £1,00 for Estranged Students
- help with getting employment (part-time and when you graduate)
For under-graduate students aged 25 or under when they begin their course. Please visit the Student Funding Advice page for further information
If you are leaving care or are estranged from your parents and family, making the decision to go to university may seem even more daunting.
We can help you every step of the way…
Thinking of applying?
- chat about what it’s like to study at Plymouth Marjon University
- meet with you (and your Personal Adviser or Carer if you want to bring them too)
- to arrange a visit to Marjon and meet students and staff teaching on the programme your interested in and have a look at our campus accommodation – you can live on campus all year round for the duration of your course
- help you complete your UCAS application form
- make sure you know how to access all your funding, including our Marjon Care Leavers’ Bursary of £2,000
Once you’ve got your place
Matt or Sophie will keep in touch updating you with information about arrival, linking in with other students starting at the same time as you and making sure you know what to bring and answering any questions you might have before you arrive.
Arrival and the first week
Matt and Sophie will be here to meet you on your first day and, along with our team of Resident Student Assistants, help settle you in along with all our other new students – it’s a new experience for everyone!
As well as a range of formal induction events there are lots of social activities, clubs and societies you can join in with from the start; Matt and Sophie will be on hand to make sure you get to know the ropes quickly and get any extra help or support you need when you need it.
They will also help you apply for a Totum Card – free for eligible Care Leavers: https://www.nus.org.uk/en/nus-extra/about-the-card/ – to help you get over discounts in over 200 UK outlets and access to international discounts.
While you’re studying with us
Matt or Sophie will always be there to listen and continue to support you in a way that works for you while you are with us. This could be ‘mentoring’, going to a meeting with you or a simple catch-up over a cup of tea. They will be there to point you in the right direction if you have a wobble – this is in addition to the Personal Development Tutor you will be allocated on your course.
After uni – what next?
Our Futures (employability) team will work out a plan with you to help you get your dream job or go on to further study when you finish. This might include getting some work experience or volunteering during your course or spending a summer on Camp America.
Useful resources and further support
Propel – a fantastic website to help you decide whether studying at university is right for you and general information about moving into higher education, including stories of care leavers who have.
Become – advice, support and fact sheets.
National Network for the Education of Care Leavers – lists events and resources.
UCAS – has a specific section for care leavers as well as being the place to search for courses and apply for university; it includes student case studies.
Care Leavers Foundation – provides small grants for 18 -29 year olds who are in crisis or want to get their lives under control.
Coram Voice – advocacy and support for those in care and recent care leavers.
Stand Alone – charity that supports people estranged from their families
Care Leavers Local Authority Support
In addition to Tuition Fee and Maintenance Loans, and any bursaries or scholarships offered by your university, as a care leaver you will also be entitled to support (including financial help) from your Local Authority. Click the headings below to find out more about the support your Local Authority offers.