Student grants are available to all EU undergraduates studying in Ireland. This is in addition to the Free Fees scheme as there are both fees grants and maintenance grants available. The specific type of grant available depends on the level and duration of the course being enrolled on. Student loans and banking options are also widely available for both home and international students.
Type of grants and loans and providing institutions
Grants for EU students studying at Irish universities are all administered by SUSI, Student Universal Support Ireland. All applications are made online and the type and level of grant that could be received will depend on the course being studied along with general financial situation. Loans are provided directly from banks and are supplied interest free for the duration of study, which then become repayable upon graduation.
Availability and conditions for getting a grant or a loan
Grants are available, especially the Free Fees scheme, to all EU undergraduate students. However it should be noted that all grants are means tested and so should there be a high family income then grants may be reduced. This is more relevant to maintenance grants that are provided to some students from less privileged backgrounds and who are assessed to require greater financial assistance in order to be able to attend university.
Loans are almost entirely based upon the type of course being studied, so the level of the course and the duration will be the dominant things taken into account. Depending upon the bank, there may also be a guarantee required from a parent or guardian.
Local grants and loans for foreign students
There are both grants and loans available for foreign students. Irish and EU students are all eligible to apply for a student grant through SUSI. It should be noted that there are no grants available for non-EU students. The grants that are available are all means tested and are designed to cover fees and/or maintenance. One thing to note about student loans is that most require the applicant to hold an account at that bank as well.
The most typical grant awarded to students in Ireland is the Free Fees grant. This grant covers the fees for both Irish and EU students. This can be an important source of funding for many students as there is a very large variability in tuition fees between universities.