The Open University’s Carers Scholarships Fund, which offers 10 successful applicants with funding to complete a full undergraduate qualification* of their choice, opens for applications from today. This year also sees the introduction of the Carers Bursary – a £250 award to support registered students with study costs.
Carers Scholarships Fund
The pandemic has seen a rise in people taking on the role of carer, with Carers UK reporting that 13.6 million people in the UK now care for a friend or family member. The tasks that carers perform can be unexpected and difficult to plan around; disrupting everyday life, from relationships and health to finances and work.
The practicalities of studying can also be challenging, with carers often feeling guilty about going to university or finding it difficult to commit to a timetable because of their responsibilities. The OU is the ideal place for carers to study, as it has an open access entry policy and a distance learning model that provides a flexible way to learn. In addition, registered carers have on-hand help with the OU’s highly-skilled Student Support Team, which has dedicated advisors that have been trained to understand the demands that carers may face.
OU alumni, Richard recently completed his BA (Hons) Open Degree, whilst caring for his terminally ill daughter, Ella.
“I fulfilled my childhood dream of studying writing with The Open University, now I need to use my skills to realise a new dream.
“Looking back, I feel I always had the ability, but never the belief and The Open University helped me to believe.”
Read Richard’s full story: https://ounews.co/student-stories/the-ou-was-there-when-life-seemed-impossible/
Dr Mary Larkin, Professor of Care, Carers and Caring and Chair of the Carer Research and Knowledge Exchange Network (CAREN), added:
“The Carers Scholarships Fund is a helping hand for those who spend so much of their time looking after others, day in and day out.”
The Carers Scholarships Fund is supported by Carers Trust, Carers UK and CareTech Foundation. To apply for the next cohort, with studies starting in Autumn 2021, please visit: http://www.open.ac.uk/courses/fees-and-funding/carers-scholarship-fund
Applications close at midnight on 21 August 2021.
OU students in Scotland with a personal income of £25,000 or less may be eligible to study for free with a part-time fee grant.
*Full undergraduate qualification includes, CertHE, DipHE, Honours Degree, Foundation Degree or Open University Certificate. For further information, please visit http://www.open.ac.uk/courses/types
This year, the OU has also established a £250 bursary for carers. With 2000 awards available, the bursary is open to registered OU students to support with study costs.
To qualify, you’ll need to meet the following criteria:
- ordinarily resident in the UK and eligible for a UK module fee
- able to demonstrate proof of caring responsibilities or care experience
- have a gross personal income of no more than £25,000 per year, or be in receipt of a qualifying benefit
- actively studying a minimum of 30 credits of Open University undergraduate or postgraduate study during either the 2020/21 or 2021/22 academic years (01 August 2020 to 31 July 2022)
For further information and to apply, please visit:
Carers Bursary – http://www.open.ac.uk/courses/fees-and-funding/carers-bursary