At the University of Cumbria, we want to ensure that all care leavers who want to are able to access higher education, and that they can participate effectively in all areas of university life.

Are you a Care Leaver?

The University of Cumbria use the Student Finance England (SFE) definition for care leaver found on the practitioners page:

A care leaver is a young person who meets all the below:

Further SFE Funding advice including evidence required for care leavers can be accessed on their webpage:

What Support Can We Offer to Care Leavers?

The University of Cumbria will offer levels of support to all defined care leavers.

* To maximise your chances of being allocated a Cumbria Bursary, you should ensure that you apply for income assessed student finance through your funding body (e.g. Student Finance England). In your application, you must give consent to share your financial information with your Higher Education Institution.

Funded Transport for Applicant Visit Days and Interviews

We are committed to supporting care leavers holding an offer with us to be able to attend an Applicant Visit Day to experience your chosen course and campus in person. We can provide a contribution of up to £50 towards your travel costs dependent on total mileage travelled to and from the event within the following bands:



This scheme is only applicable to the offer holder; all claims must be made at the time of attending your chosen event and payment will be made directly into the offer holders bank account within 3 weeks of attending your chosen event. To make your claim, contact


Terms and Conditions


Student Finance and the Cumbria Bursary

Some students find that they would like some advice with the Student Finance application, particularly when it comes to proving independent status that can mean they receive more maintenance loan. If this would be helpful for you, you can contact our Money Advisors at, who will be happy to help you with any money related queries you have. You can also meet our money advisors at an Applicant Visit Day. 

Additional information for care leavers/independent students is available from Student Finance England and additional information on independent status can be found from Stand Alone.

Please also visit our own Fees and Finance page for information on scholarships and bursaries as well as useful information from our money advisers. Care leavers who declare their status may have increased priority in being allocated a Cumbria Bursary*. Additionally, as a care leaver, you will be offered a pre-entry finance meeting to discuss extra funds you may be eligible for, budgeting techniques and any other enquiries or questions you may have.

Health and Wellbeing

The university offers confidential support and advice in a number of ways:

Find out more

During induction week you will be introduced to staff from Student and Staff Services. They offer 24-hour access to online resources and a huge range of e-resources so that you can find support even when you're off-campus. Face-face support and workshops are also available.

Additional support services are provided for disabled students, which includes students with learning difficulties (such as dyslexia).

Schools, Colleges and Community Groups

We work with schools and colleges across Cumbria and Lancashire and are more than happy to come into schools or community groups to offer advice and guidance to young people currently in care, and care leavers thinking about entering HE.

We can also attend foster carer training to ensure that foster parents have the knowledge and resources to help foster children when they start to apply for HE places.

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