Sanctuary Scholarships

Sanctuary Scholarships 2020

We are happy to announce the 2020 UCC undergraduate (Level 8) Sanctuary Scholarships process is opening soon. Application forms will be available from late January 2020 and close 5 p.m. May 5th 2020 (extended closing date).

Please see the 'Information on Application Process' section below to find out more about how to apply. A video of about the process is also available below.

Please contact if you have any queries.

UCC Sanctuary Scholarships 2020 Information Session - VIDEO

The Sanctuary Scholarship Information Session, held on December 11th 2019 was video-recorded and may be viewed here.

Sanctuary Scholarships 2020 Eligibility Criteria

Applicants must

(1) Be an asylum seeker or a refugee who is not eligible for the state Free Fees schemeSUSI grants and/or the state pilot support scheme (documentation of status will be required)

(2) Meet the academic eligibility criteria for their chosen UCC degree course through the CAO application process (including the Mature Student Entry route, which closes for applications on February 1st 2020)

(3) Be living in the Republic of Ireland and

(4) Be able to live in commuting distance to Cork during the course of their studies.


  • The scheme is targeted at people who have not had the opportunity to study at (or complete) undergraduate education.
  • The scheme does not include accommodation support. For queries please contact

Information on Application Process

General advice:

  1. The Sanctuary Scholarship award requires both a traditional academic application to UCC through the national Central Applications Office (CAO) process, and a separate UCC scholarship application.

  2. The scholarship application form will be made available on this webpage in late January 2020, and will close on May 5th 2020 at 5 p.m. (extended closing date) 

  3. There was a general information session held in UCC in December, which was filmed and is available to view at the link above.  There will be another information session in CIT on January 15th at 3 p.m. in room IT1, which is located in the Library building on the CIT campus.

  4. If you wish to apply to UCC for a scholarship and would like an academic mentor to assist you with the application, please contact this office at so that we can assess eligibility and identify your course preference in UCC.  We will use this information to try and match possible applicants with academic mentors in UCC to assist in completing the appliction form itself.  **We will not match mentors with applicants who do not hold a valid CAO number.**

CAO information:

  1. Applications for scholarships will be open to those applying for undergraduate degree courses through the following CAO routes: Leaving Certificate, QQI FET/FETAC and/or Mature Student entry (note: Mature Student CAO applications closed on Feb 1st 2020). See the entry requirements for UCC undergraduate courses here.

  2. Ensure that you apply to UCC through the CAO route (Leaving Certificate or QQI FE/FETAC) before May 1st 2020. Those wishing to apply for the Mature Student Route should note the CAO deadline has now closed (as of Feb 1st 2020).

  3. Those who have applied using the Mature Student Route have a limited opportunity to change the CAO courses they wish to apply for after February 1st 2020. There are also additional assessments, interviews and costs associated with applying for certain courses. See this information on Mature Student Entry to UCC 2020

  4. Non-Mature Student (under 23 years of age on Jan 1st 2020) applicants making an application through the CAO with a view to obtaining a Sanctuary Scholarship, are advised to tick the Higher Education Access Route (HEAR) box, and complete the HEAR application process (which is only available on applications submitted by February 1st 2019). Read more about the HEAR Scheme.

  5. Non-Mature Student applicants can use the CAO change of mind facility until July 1st 2020. See CAO guidance here.

  6. Non-Mature Student applicants should use the CAO Change of Mind facility wisely, as this may help gain a better chance of gaining entry into UCC. We would encourage you to apply for as many UCC courses as possible, depending on your genuine study interests and eligibility. The CAO Change of Mind facility is open until July 1st.


Please note that your Sanctuary Scholarship application won't be disadvantaged if the UCC course discussed in your scholarship application is not the UCC course you are offered in the end. Any personal statements about coming to UCC should focus on your first preference UCC course, and not on other UCC courses you have applied for. Application marks will be awarded and checked by members of the UCC Sanctuary Scholarship Committee.


If you have any questions please email

Sanctuary Scholarship 2020 Application Form

The online application form is now open and will remain so until 5 p.m., May 5th 2020 (extended closing date)

All applications must come through the online form here:


*** UCC Sanctuary Scholarships Application Form ***


Please note:  Your application to the scheme MUST be completed via the online form (at link above or form below).


Any other queries about questions on the application form should be directed to

Once again, online applications ONLY will be accepted.

Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Unit

Comhionannas, Éagsúlacht agus Ionchuimsitheacht