1916 Bursary SOAR
1916 Bursary Information for Academic Year 2020-21
What is the 1916 Bursary Fund?
The 1916 Bursary Fund was established by the Department of Education and Skills. The purpose of the Fund is to encourage participation and success by students who are most socio-economically disadvantaged and who are from groups most under-represented in higher education. All of the higher education institutions are awarding the Bursaries through regional clusters.
1916 Bursary Fund: South Cluster SOAR Project
The South Cluster comprises 5 higher education institutions: Cork Institute of Technology, Institute of Technology Carlow, Institute of Technology Tralee, University College Cork and Waterford Institute of Technology. The bursary fund will be administered through the South Cluster’s SOAR Project. The SOAR Project is an inter-institutional Access initiative funded under the Programme for Access to Higher Education (PATH) Fund. The South Cluster have a total of 35 bursaries available to award to students applying to these higher education institutions.
What is the value of a 1916 Bursary?
Each student who is awarded the 1916 Bursary Fund will receive a bursary to the amount of €5,000 per annum for the normal duration of a full-time undergraduate programme. A bursary will be awarded for the normal duration of a part-time undergraduate course up to a maximum period of six years.
Applications for the 1916 Bursary for the 2020-2021 academic year will open on 07 May 2020.
Who can apply for a 1916 Bursary? (Eligibility Criteria)
Applications will only be considered from students that meet the following eligibility criteria set out by the Department of Education and Skills:
- Applicant is from socio-economically disadvantaged background and can provide evidence of such by demonstrating:
- Applicant must be from at least one of the following target groups:
Applicant would be eligible for the Special Rate level of SUSI grant
AND / OR
the household / family gross reckonable income was less than €24,500 in 2019 and includes a Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection (DEASP) means-tested social welfare payment(s).
- Socio-economically disadvantaged communities
- Socio-economic groups that have low participation rates in higher education;
- Students with a disability;
- Lone parents in receipt of a means tested social welfare payment;
- Irish Travellers;
- First time, mature student entrants;
- Students entering on the basis of a QQI Further Education award;
- Students from ethnic minorities who are lawfully present in the State and are:
- a national of a Member State, a state which is a contracting state to the EEA agreement or the Swiss Confederation,
- a person whose current immigration status or leave to remain under the Department of Justice and Equality, is one of the following:
- refugee (including programme refugees);
- subsidiary protection;
- permission to remain as the family member of an EU/EEA/Swiss citizen under the European Communities (Free Movement of Persons) Regulations 2006 and 2008 and EU Directive 2004/38/EC (EU Treaty Rights provisions);
- permission to remain because of marriage/civil partnership with an Irish national or as dependent child of such person;
- a person in respect of whom the Minister for Justice and Equality has granted humanitarian leave to remain in the State under any enactment for the time being in force;
- permission to remain following a decision not to deport under Sections 3 of the Immigration Act 1999;
- permission to remain as a dependent child of a person who has acquired Irish Citizenship by naturalisation, residing in the State.; or
- a person granted permission to reside in the State under Section 49 of the International Protection Act 2015 (No.66 of 2015) (For further clarification, see section 14 of the Student Support Act 2011 and regulation 5 the Student Support Regulations 2020 (Statutory Instrument No. 77 of 2020).
- be a new entrant, pursuing an undergraduate course and progressing to higher education for the first time in the 2020-2021 academic year.
- have been resident in the Irish State for three of the past five years on the date on which the first year of study commences.
- be studying an approved full-time or part-time undergraduate course leading to a major higher education and training award at Level 6 (Higher Certificate), Level 7 (Ordinary Bachelor Degree), Level 8 (Honours Bachelor Degree) on the national framework of qualifications or equivalent awards that take not less than two years to complete in one of the SOAR Project South Cluster Higher Education Institutions.
Who cannot apply for a 1916 Bursary?
- Students who are not first time entrants to higher education in the 2020-2021 academic year.
- Students who have already received a qualification at the same level.
- Students on a full-time or part-time undergraduate course in a publicly funded institution that takes less than two years to complete or on the successful completion of which a student is awarded a major higher education and training award at level 5 or below on the National Framework of Qualifications.
- Student who is paying non-EU fees
How do I apply?
There is one central online application process for the South Cluster higher education institutions. There are two stages to making a complete 1916 Bursary Fund: South Cluster SOAR Project Application:
Stage 1) You must complete all sections of the online 1916 Bursary Fund: South Cluster SOAR Project 2020/2021 Application (Part I). The closing date for completion of Application (Part I) is 17:00 Friday 16th October 2020.
Stage 2) After CAO Leaving Cert Round One offers, and having submitted Application (Part I) you will receive an email in September 2020 inviting you to complete the online Application (Part II). This will involve providing additional information and uploading supporting documentation to complete your application. The closing date for completion of Application (Part II) is 17:00 Friday 30th October 2020.
You can only apply through the online Application (Part I) and (Part II). You must complete both Applications. Your application will be assessed on the basis of information provided on the online application and the supporting documentation provided.
What is the Application Deadline?
The closing date for completion of Application (Part I) is 17:00 Friday 16 October 2020.
The closing date for completion of Application (Part II) is 17:00 Friday 30 October 2020.
The online application can be accessed from 07 May 2020 on the SOAR Project Website at the following link https://www.soarforaccess.ie/1916-bursary-fund/
All students are advised to first refer to information provided on this website regarding the application process and eligibility criteria.
What type of supporting documentation do I need to supply with my application?
Applicants are required to submit relevant supporting financial and target group documentary evidence. This supporting documentation can only be submitted online in Application (Part II). The 1916 Bursary Fund South Cluster SOAR Project Supporting Documentation Guide will be available here shortly.
How is my application assessed?
Your application will be assessed on the basis of information provided on the online Application (Part I) and (Part II) and the supporting documentation uploaded with the application. Applicants must meet the eligibility criteria as set out by the Department of Education and Skills - socio-economic (financial) criteria and target group criteria in order to be considered for the bursary. The following additional indicators of socio-economic disadvantage will also be considered:
- Attended at a DEIS second level school for a minimum of 5 years.
- Are / were in the Care of the State / TUSLA.
- Currently residing in Direct Provision / supported accommodation
Please note some HEI’s may request a meeting with applicants as part of the assessment process.
It is expected that the number of applications will exceed the number of bursaries available. The SOAR Project will prioritise those deemed in greatest need; who are socio-economically disadvantaged and can provide evidence of membership of the target group(s); the institutions will give due regard to ensuring that the benefit of the bursaries is maximised.
Applicants must clearly demonstrate the significance and impact of the socio-economic disadvantage and barriers experienced.
Please email all queries regarding the 1916 Bursary Fund: South Cluster SOAR Project to: 1916BursaryQueries@soarforaccess.ie
How many Bursaries will be awarded in the South Cluster SOAR Project?
The South Cluster SOAR Project has a total of 35 bursaries available to award in 2020-2021.
I am a Postgraduate Student. Can I apply for the 1916 Bursary Fund?
No. The 1916 Bursary Fund is only open to first time, new entrants pursuing an undergraduate course and progressing to higher education for the first time in the 2020-2021 academic year.
I am already in college. Can I apply for the 1916 Bursary Fund?
- The 1916 Bursary Fund is only open to first time, new entrants pursuing an undergraduate course and progressing to higher education for the first time in the 2020-2021 academic year.
- keep within the rules and regulations of your institution.
I am a part-time student. Can I apply for the 1916 Bursary Fund?
Yes, but only if you are pursuing an approved part time undergraduate course leading to a major higher education and training award at Level 6 (Higher Certificate), Level 7 (Ordinary Bachelor Degree), Level 8 (Honours Bachelor Degree) on the national framework of qualifications or equivalent awards that take not less than two years to complete in one of the SOAR Project South Cluster Higher Education Institutions.
I am repeating first year. Can I apply?
Applications from those currently repeating Year 1 of their undergraduate programme will only be considered in cases where evidence is supplied that a significant life event was the reason for poor performance in the last academic year. Examples of such life events include major ill health which was certified at the time, pregnancy, bereavement in the immediate family.
When will I be told the outcome of my application?
It expected that applicants will be informed of the outcome by the end of November 2020.
If my application is unsuccessful, can I make an appeal?
Yes the South Cluster SOAR Project is committed to ensuring the all applications are assessed fairly, accurately and according to the Department of Education and Skills guidelines. All appeals will be considered by an Independent Appeals Panel. The grounds for appeal are:
That you believe there was an “administrative error in assessment” i.e. that you think a mistake was made when your application was being reviewed that led to you not being awarded the Bursary.
How do I make an appeal?
Information on the South Cluster SOAR Project Appeal Process will be published later.
Will the 1916 Bursary Fund affect my SUSI Grant?
Students will be entitled to hold the 1916 Bursary and the student grant simultaneously, where they meet the eligibility conditions of the student grant scheme. The 1916 Bursary will be an income disregard for the purposes of ‘reckonable income’ in the student grant scheme.
Will the Bursary affect my Social Welfare payment?
No – the 1916 Bursary Fund does not affect your means-tested or other payments from the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection
Can I keep my Rent Allowance and Medical Card with the 1916 Bursary Fund?
The Bursary should not be counted as income when you are being assessed for any means tested payments.
Can I hold the 1916 Bursary Fund if I have been awarded other Scholarships?
Applicants cannot hold the 1916 Bursary and other scholarships.
Are there any other financial supports available in college?
Yes. Each Higher Education Institution has a Student Assistance Fund to support qualifying students experiencing financial hardship. Please contact the Access Service of the college to find out more.
If I am awarded the 1916 Bursary Fund, how will I be paid?
You will be paid by electronic payment to your bank account.
What is expected of me if I am awarded a 1916 Bursary Fund?
1916 Bursary Fund Recipients are expected to:
- agree to any assessment set out by your institution for your course.
- engage and co-operate with the department managing the 1916 Bursary Fund in your institution.
- awardees may be asked to attend or be part of events organised by the institution to increase awareness of the 1916 Bursary Fund.
If I am awarded the 1916 Bursary Fund, can I repeat a year of study?
The 1916 Bursary Fund cannot be paid for a repeat year unless the institution agrees that there were “exceptional circumstances” i.e. medical or personal reasons why you could not complete the year. You would be expected to provide written evidence of your illness or personal situation from a professional outside your family group. You would also be expected to work with the student supports within your institution during your difficulty and at a minimum have advised someone in your college that you have an issue ongoing.
Data sharing arrangements will be in place between the participating South Cluster Higher Education Institutions, subject to data protection considerations.
How do I get more information?
Please email 1916BursaryQueries@soarforaccess.ie if you have any further queries. Unfortunately there is no phone line for queries at present.