Alternative Ideas for Funding Higher Education

Alternative Ideas for Funding Higher Education

As September creeps up on us, a new school year is about to start, and for many people that means a first glance at higher education.

Whether you’re a school student moving onto university or an adult wanting a change in career or better career prospects, the thought of paying for higher education is often the one thing that can dampen excitement.

No student wants to spend the foreseeable future in debt, but that’s often the reality for most. But, what if there were ways of lowering your debt as you study? Take a look at these.

The Royal Navy

If you have a career in the Royal Navy in mind, you may also have a way of paying off some of your debt before you leave school. If you have one or more years left in your education, you could apply for up £1500 towards your education.

If you’re successful, it could also mean you have a guaranteed job waiting for you when you finish your studies. For many people, that’s an added bonus and a huge weight off their shoulders.

NHS Student Bursaries

Alternative Ideas for Funding Higher Education - Nurse

Do you have your heart set on working for the NHS? If so, you could be entitled to claim a bursary that could fund a chunk of your education.

The amount you can claim varies, depending on where you study and what you plan to achieve. Student nurses and midwives can claim up to £5,500 if they’re living in London during their studies.

However, you do have to take into consideration the cost of living in a capital city while pursuing your education.


Scholarships aren’t as broadly used in the UK as they are in the US, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t available. If you’re willing to work hard and show you can get outstanding results, universities may just sit up and take notice.

Take the University of Bath for example, who offer high-performing athletes scholarships through their partnership with the Santander bank.

It’s worth enquiring whether any of your chosen universities have scholarship programmes before you start your studies.

Budget Plan

If you’re unable to get a financial boost from anywhere, don’t fear. It’s not impossible to save the money you need to pay off your debt while you’re studying.

To do this, you’ll need to know how long your education will last. For example, a typical counselling degree will last four years, but doing a masters in school counselling online may take you anything from two to five years. Sticking to your budget for that length of time could help you to save.


Doing an apprenticeship gives you the best of both worlds. You’re able to earn money to put towards your education and you’ll often have the benefit of learning practicalities they just can’t teach you in the classroom.

Pair that with studying from your parent’s home, instead of living in student accommodation and you’re likely to leave school with half the amount of debt your peers are in.

Don’t let the cost of higher education put you off!

About author

Poppy loves personal finance almost as much as she loves her two cats, Tif and Taz.
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