But the clock is ticking for potential applicants, as the closing date for this year’s applications is 31 May.
A total of 28 universities, including Aston University will be awarding the Unite Foundation scholarship, which provides free accommodation for three years to students fitting the criteria. Applicants must be under 25 years of age, a care-leaver or estranged from their family, and have a place at a participating university starting this September. However, with the closing date just two weeks away, young people who are eligible are urged to act now for a chance to win one of the 70 scholarships on offer for the 2017/18 academic year.
Helen Arber, manager of the Unite Foundation said: “Too few young people estranged from their families or leaving care realise their full potential at university. We want to change that. A Unite Foundation Scholarship means a rent-free university home for three years of degree studies. It also brings other benefits, such as work placements and activities that support successful study and future careers.”
Offering the scholarship for the first time, a spokesman for Aston University said: “We are delighted to have become a Unite Foundation partner university. A Unite Foundation scholarship will undoubtedly help those students who lack family support and who, we know, face some very considerable challenges. We are very much looking forward to working with the growing network of universities involved to level the playing field”.
The accommodation will be within a Unite Students building, and, as the UK’s leading manager and developer of student accommodation in the UK, Unite Students is also the Foundation’s principle donor. Since 2012, the Foundation has supported 179 university students with scholarships, and with the inclusion of an additional 18 partner universities for the coming academic year, that number is set to grow substantially.
Paige, a student completely estranged from her family who won the scholarship this time last year, said of her experience: “My main worries when applying for university was how I was going to support myself, if I was going to meet new friends and if I was going to be able to cope with the stress of uni work. Honestly, it’s the happiest I’ve ever been!
“The scholarship meant I could use the money that I would have used for rent to buy equipment to help me improve my skills. I actually met a girl through this scholarship who I’m living with next year; we’ve become really good friends and have supported each other through difficult times. I know I wouldn’t have met her without the scholarship.
“I’m going to carry on developing my skills and put my all into my education. The Unite Foundation student scholarship has made me feel like I’m not alone and if they believe in me then I can believe in me too.”
“If you, or someone you know, would benefit from a Unite Foundation accommodation scholarship, please urge them to apply as soon as possible. Download the application via the Unite Foundation website www.unitefoundation.co.uk.” said Helen Arber.
Notes to the editor
About The Unite Foundation
About Aston University
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