An Cosán Financial Supports

We know going to college can be an exciting but expensive experience. We also know one of the biggest barriers people face in accessing education is financial.  An Cosán offer phased payment options and have a small Bursary Fund available for individual learners.

Payment Plans

An Cosán have payment plan options available for individual learners who are self-funding their programmes. This is our Fee Payment Agreement Plan for the academic year 2024-2025.

An Cosán Bursary Fund

In 2024 An Cosán is very grateful to be in receipt of a limited Bursary Fund. An application process is in place for An Cosán learners to apply to the An Cosán Bursary Fund where finance is a barrier to accessing education. Where possible, all bursary applications should be accompanied by a note from an organisation, a tutor or mentor with a reference and recommendation for a bursary. All bursaries awarded are partial bursaries and will contribute towards your course fees only.

Please note bursary awards are dependent on funding availability on a yearly basis.

Contact An Cosán by emailing to find out how to apply for financial support from this fund.

Guide to other Funding Supports

We have put together a Guide to other Funding Supports which you may be eligible to apply for support to help you reach your full potential.  This Guide is for reference only and was accurate at time of compilation to support.   We recommend you contact each of the organisations directly to check your eligibility to apply for support.

SETU Carlow – Student Assistance Fund

The Student Assistance Fund is a means tested fund and is intended to assist full time students who are finding it difficult to meet college expenses as a result of ongoing low income. The Fund provides financial support to students who are in significant financial difficulty and whose participation in college would be at risk without financial support. The purpose of the Fund is to assist by making a contribution to students in meeting some of the day-to-day costs incurred by being in college.  Click here for more information on the Student Assistance Fund.


Uversity’s Scholarships are intended to unlock adult learners’ potential.  By providing multi-annual financial support, Uversity’s Scholarships aim to remove the financial barriers to pursue a Bachelor’s degree for the first time.  Scholarships are not limited to specific subject areas and enable individuals 23 years or older to complete a Bachelor’s degree in one of the participating institutions in the Republic of Ireland or Northern Ireland.

For more information on how to apply and check your eligibility visit

The 1916 Bursary Fund 

The 1916 Bursary aims to encourage participation and success by students who are most socio-economically disadvantaged and from groups most under-represented in higher education. To be eligible for a 1916 Bursary, all applicants must meet, Financial, Priority Group and College Entry eligibility criteria. All of the higher education institutions are awarding the bursaries through regional clusters.

Click here for information on the 1916 Bursary Fund.

The Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection

The Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection offer a range of supports for people who are in receipt of social welfare income supports to gain new skills through training or education e.g. Back to Education Allowance (BTEA), Training Support Grant, Technical Employment Support Grant (TESG) and a Mediation Fund. All applications or referrals for support under the schemes must be made via a Case Officer.

To check eligibility please contact your Case officer in your local Intreo Office or Local Employment service.

Find your local Intreo Office here or call 1890 800 024.

St Vincent de Paul – Education and Training Bursary Fund

The SVP Education and Training Bursary Fund has been established to support students of all ages who may financially struggle to access or stay in third level education and training programmes.  St Vincent de Paul have an Education Fund that people can apply to locally.  Click here to find out more information on the Fund. To find out how you can apply to the SVP Education and Training Bursary Programme, you can contact your Regional office.

SICAP Funding through your Local Development Company

The Social Inclusion and Community Activation Programme (SICAP) 2018-2022 is funded by the Irish Government through the Department of Rural and Community Development and co-funded by the European Social Fund under the Programme for Employability, Inclusion and Learning (PEIL) 2014-2020.  The Social Inclusion and Community Activation Programme (SICAP) helps people to find work, to upskill, provides CV training, a personal development course, helps them onto a work placement programme such as CE or Tύs programme.  You may be able to seek support to get back to education by contacting your local development company who administer SICAP programmes nationally.  Click here to find your local SICAP Provider and ask to speak to the SICAP coordinator.

Education and Training Boards (ETBs)

ETBs are statutory authorities which have responsibility for education and training, youth work and a range of other statutory functions. ETBs manage and operate second-level schools, further education colleges, multi-faith community national schools and a range of adult and further education centres delivering education and training programmes.  Occasionally, local community groups can apply for Community Education Funding for offer education programmes in your area.  Contact your local Community Education Office.  Click here to find your local ETB.

The Irish Refugee Council 

The Irish Refugee Council (IRC) Education Fund was established in 2015 with support from the Community Foundation for Ireland to financially assist people in the asylum process in accessing further and higher education.  Since 2016 the Education Fund has continued due to donations from private individuals and a small number of companies. The Irish Refugee Council have also compiled a ‘Guide to Education in Ireland: A guide for protection applicants, those with refugee status, subsidiary protection or permission to remain’.

You can download the Guide to Education in Ireland here >>

For further information email

Local and Regional Drug and Alcohol Task Forces

Local and regional drug and alcohol task forces implement the national drugs strategy in the context of the needs of their local area.  Your local Task Force may have funding available for support you in Education.  Contact your local Coordinator to find out more.  To find the Drug and Alcohol Task force in your area click here.

Credit Unions

Many Credit Unions in Ireland provide a number of education grants or bursaries in their catchment areas for stgudents studying at all levels of further and higher education.  The “It makes sense” Loan – This scheme which is offered as a low-cost alternative loan, is being made available in participating credit unions across the country and is open to those in receipt of social welfare who are over 18 years of age.  Click here for information about “It makes sense” loans and click here to go the national credit union site, where you can find details of your local credit union. is a convenient and user-friendly source of information on the financial assistance schemes available in Ireland to help you to progress through further and higher education. Click here to see the list of supports compiled on this site. 


Fund for Students with Disabilities

The purpose of the Fund for Students with Disabilities (FSD) is to assist higher education institutions in ensuring students with disabilities have the necessary assistance and equipment to enable them access, fully participate in and successfully complete their chosen course of study.

Click here to find out more.

AHEAD has also compiled some useful information on their website.