Previously, eligible Tipperary students applied to their Local Authority or Vocational Education Committee (VEC) for Student Grants, involving some 66 authorities nationwide. Beginning this year, this will no longer be the case, saving our exchequer an estimated €5 million annually & reducing the number of staff involved in processing applications from 170 to 65.
A centralised ‘online system,’ dealing with students grants has now been introduced for those entering third-level education in the next academic year.
This new system will be known as Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI) and will accept all new grant applications and make payments.
Under the SUSI system, students will apply online and once successful will receive monthly electronic transfers direct to their bank accounts.
Labour Minister for Education Ruairí Quinn is now urging students to apply early, regardless of whether they have decided on a college course or not.
The Union of Students in Ireland (USI) have welcomed the new system.
Students are advised to visit studentfinance.ie as soon as possible to check if they are eligible for a grant and apply immediately.