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Grants, bursaries and scholarships for engineers

Grants, bursaries and scholarships for engineersThere’s plenty of extra funding out there for engineering students – but you need to know where to look.

Bursaries and Scholarships

Most universities have a variety of different bursaries and scholarships. These are both sources of extra money that you don’t have to pay back. Bursaries are normally given out based on your circumstances: they might be offered to people on a low income, or who are the first in their family to go to university. Scholarships are usually given based on academic achievement. In your first year, this might be your A-level results. After that it will probably be based on end-of-year exam results.

Many bursaries and scholarships are open only to students of particular subjects, so make sure you check for engineering-specific schemes. In many cases, these will be for a specific branch of engineering. For example, the University of Manchester has a £2,000 scholarship for mechanical engineering students, which is based on their first year exam results. There may be less competition for these than for those that are open to everyone.

You can find out what is available from university websites – don’t forget to check the engineering department’s site for information about any engineering-specific schemes. Alternatively, you can compare what’s on offer at different universities using a website like Scholarship Search.

Travel awards

Engineering is an international activity, so many universities offer travel awards: money given to students to allow them to travel to things like conferences and exhibitions. For example, the University of Birmingham’s Bowater Trust Travel Awards allow engineering students to travel to events that will help them broaden their studies beyond their usual specialisms.

Again, travel awards can be either general or by subject. They could also be open only to students who reach a certain level of academic achievement. And, of course, you don’t get a free choice about what to spend it on: you’ll have to make your case for where you want to go with the money, and will probably have to report back about your trip.

Industry awards

Universities aren’t the only people with money to give to keen students. Engineering institutions like the Institution of Engineering and Technology and the Royal Academy of Engineering offer a variety of awards for undergraduate engineers.

Other organisations are dedicated to a specific branch of engineering and might offer scholarship schemes for those specialisms. For example, if you’re studying civil engineering you may be able to get a bursary from the Construction Youth Trust.

Individual companies also run sponsorship schemes, which are similar to scholarships but may require something in return, such as holiday work or a commitment to work for the company after graduation. Find out more about degree sponsorship.

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