Behind the Scenes with the Student Life Team
Sarah Jones and Becky Pearson make up our Student Life Team here at Bradford and are your first point of call for everything student money related.
The team offer advice on student funding eligibility, welfare benefits, scholarships, budgeting, and anything else money related! They are currently working from home but are still providing support to prospective and current Bradford students.
One of their most important tasks is administering the university’s Student Support Fund, which awards financial assistance to students who are struggling financially. Becky and Sarah are busy right now supporting those students who have been negatively impacted by the repercussions of COVID-19, and are doing all they can to make sure Bradford students are supported through this difficult period.
Sarah Jones, Student Life Manager, has answered some of most common questions the team receive about postgraduate student finance.
Is postgraduate student funding the same as undergraduate?
No, the funding system is very different, and it is worth taking the time to understand these differences to make sure you are fully clued up on your options. At undergraduate level, eligible students can apply for a loan for tuition fees, another loan for maintenance costs, and support for any dependents, but eligible students studying on a Masters course, are able to apply for just one Master’s Loan instead. For 2020/21, the maximum Master’s Loan is £11,222 and, as the loan is not income-assessed, you can decide how much of this you want to apply for.
You can find out more about the loan at https://www.gov.uk/masters-loan
Eligible students studying on a Doctoral course, should apply for the Doctoral Loan instead and you can find out more at https://www.gov.uk/doctoral-loan
Can I apply for any other funding to help with the cost of my studies?
The University of Bradford offers a range of scholarships and, as alumni, you are eligible to receive the Alumni Discount Scheme which offers 10% off the cost of your tuition fees. Other scholarships are available and you can read more at https://www.bradford.ac.uk/scholarships/
Is there anything else I should know?
It’s important to make sure you have made adequate provision to cover the costs of your postgraduate study, before you start your course as it will not be possible to cover all of your costs using just the Masters or the Doctoral Loan. It’s important to make sure you have made sufficient plans to cover your tuition fees, rent/mortgage and living costs, before you decide to enrol. If you are not sure if you will be able to finance your postgraduate study, please do get in contact with us and we will be happy to talk you through your options.
How do other students fund their studies?
We see a real mix of different ways that students fund postgraduate study. Many students choose to take out the loans available through Student Finance England whereas some may fund it via savings or help from parents/other family members. It’s common for postgraduate students to work whilst studying and the university’s Careers Service can help you to find a job that fits in with your study commitments.
What does a typical day look like in the Student Life Team?
There is no such thing as a typical day in the Student Life Team! Currently, much of our time is spent supporting students who have been negatively impacted by COVID-19 so a big chunk of each day is spent assessing applications to the Student Support Fund, and awarding financial support to students. We also work closely with our colleagues in our Counselling and Mental Health Team to make sure students are supported if they are struggling with their wellbeing right now. We also answer telephone and email queries received from prospective students to make sure they understand the funding available to them. We are also currently busy preparing for the new academic year to work out how we can best support our students under the current COVID-19 circumstances.
How do I get in touch with your team?
You can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 01274 23 4667.
You can also book a telephone appointment by visiting https://outlook.office365.com/owa/calendar/MoneyTeam1@uni.bradford.ac.uk/bookings/