Hardship Fund

The Hardship Fund is an emergency fund to help students facing financial difficulties. Find out what the criteria are and how to apply.

Most students are eligible to apply for help from the Hardship Fund, including international students. The fund relies on the levy from students and is therefore limited to a set amount.

What it can help with

The Hardship Fund can help with a range of issues, including:

  • necessary medical, dental or optical costs
  • unforeseen flatting or family problems
  • exceptionally high course related costs including Architecture and Design project materials
  • high transport costs
  • a disability or temporary illness which prevents part-time or vacation employment
  • costs related to teaching experience placements
  • costs associated with sexuality and gender identity for LGBTQIA+ students
  • other financial problems which adversely affect study.

In addition to grants, loans are also available where cash flow problems exist, such as awaiting scholarship or research grant payments or international funds transfers.

How to apply

To apply for a grant or loan from the Hardship Fund, make an appointment with a student finance adviser. Set aside about 30 to 45 minutes. The adviser will discuss your circumstances and help you complete the application form. This includes a budget which shows your current income and essential expenses.

You will need to bring some documents with you, including:

  • Your application form.
  • A recent bank statement or internet banking printout—this should show at least 2 weeks' transactions. All account balances should be shown.
  • MyStudylink account printout confirming course related costs claim.
  • If applying for help with:
    • A particular bill (e.g. power, phone), bring the bill.
    • Assistance with textbooks, bring a quote.
    • Dental work or glasses, bring a quote.
    • Bond and/or advance rent, bring the lease agreement.
    • Architecture & Design Project costs greater than $100, bring this form completed and signed off by the course coordinator.

Applicants are expected to have used all of their entitlements under the Student Loan scheme before they apply.

Applications are submitted every Wednesday morning to the Hardship Committee, and applicants will be advised of the committee's decision by 2pm that day. This committee consists of staff and student representatives. Applications are confidential and the committee is not informed of the student’s identity.