Local TD urges students to apply for €500 fee subsidy

Local Fianna Fáil TD Robert Troy has urged students to apply for a €500 fee subsidy against their college fees.

Deputy Troy made the plea after it emerged that only a quarter of eligible students have applied for the €500 grant.

Students from households with an income of between €62,000 and €100,000 can apply but the Department of Further and Higher Education has said only about 10,000 of the 40,000 who are eligible have applied.

Deputy Troy said: “The Government has introduced important changes to make more supports available to help students and their families.

“This €500 grant is designed to reduce the cost of going to college for families. I would encourage all students who are eligible to log onto susi.ie and use the Eligibility Indicator to check whether they can access these important supports.”

Separately, the household earnings threshold for the €1,500 grant towards the student contribution fee has been increased from €55,240 to €62,000.

Students in this 2023/24 academic year will also see the full benefit of increases to the maintenance grants announced in Budget 2023. From January 1, 2023, the Special and Band 1 maintenance grant rates increased by 14 per cent and all the other maintenance grant rates increased by ten per cent.

The increase in student earnings outside of term time from €4,500 to €6,552 has also come into effect this academic year and there has been a reduction in the eligibility period from five years to three for second chance mature students who did not complete a course and are returning to college to pursue an approved course at PLC, undergraduate or postgraduate level.