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Oxford University offers £22,000 to Northern Irish students

Oxford University has confirmed it will be extending its student financial support package, which is the most generous in the country for low-income students, to students from Northern Ireland as well as English students

While it is not legally required to do so, the University feels that it is important to include potential students from Northern Ireland in encouraging applicants not to be deterred from applying to Oxford for financial reasons. Students from Northern Ireland will therefore be eligible for the most generous no-strings financial support for the lowest-income students of any university in England.

Students from Northern Ireland wishing to study at Oxford University from 2012 will have access to both government support and Oxford’s student support package – which for the lowest-income students will amount to more than £22,000 over three years.

Sinead Gallagher, Head of Access at Oxford University, says: “Oxford is absolutely committed to admission on merit, regardless of background – and we think that would have been undermined if we couldn’t offer all British students the same level of financial support if they are accepted to study here.

“There is still plenty of anxiety about the new tuition arrangements, but it’s all the more important that our message remains the same: If you have the ability to study at Oxford, we’ll ensure money is no barrier – no matter where in the UK you come from. We work hard to attract bright students from Northern Ireland to Oxford, and think nobody should be deterred from coming here simply for financial reasons.”

Members of the Oxford University admissions team were in Northern Ireland last week for a regional conference for teachers – this was about clarifying the admissions process, as well as the student finance and funding package available at Oxford for Northern Irish students. All of this is part of the University's efforts to make sure students and teachers have the most accurate information about what Oxford has to offer so that students aren’t put off from applying.

Belfast Telegraph