Financial Support

Financial Support for Students

Information provided is intended as a general guide, students should carefully assess all supports available to ascertain which is most suited to their particular needs. Social Protection recipients should always seek permission from the Department of Social Protection prior to participating in any course of education.

PLC Grants

Full time students on low income/certain Social Protection payments may be eligible for a PLC Grant. These grants are means tested. The Grant application process commences from July, early application is advised. For more information see  /  /

BTEA – Back to Education Allowance

The Dept. of Social Protection run a range of second chance education programmes to help unemployed people, lone parents and people with disabilities improve their skills and qualifications. People qualify for BTEA in various ways, depending on Social Protection payment, age and circumstances. If you wish to take up a full time course and retain your Social Protection entitlements you may qualify for the Back to Education Allowance (BTEA). Applications for BTEA are made through your local Social Protection Office. For more information see  /

VTOS – Vocational Training Opportunities Scheme

The college has a number of VTOS places available to full time students. VTOS gives unemployed adults the opportunity to return to full-time education without losing their Social Protection benefits. VTOS places are reserved for core VTOS courses i.e.  IT Support Technician and Network Support and Administration, any remaining places are allocated by the college. If the number of eligible students exceeds the number of VTOS places available, places are allocated by lottery. Applications for VTOS will take place in the college on Registration Day in September. To qualify for VTOS you must be over 21, in receipt of a Social Protection payment / Dependent Spouse /Signing for credits for at least six months or newly made redundant

For further information see—Vocational-Training-Opportunities-Scheme.aspx#vtos


All of our part-time courses are run under the Back to Education Initiative (BTEI). Courses may be provided free of charge to eligible students in receipt of Social Protection payments/Medical Card holders or early school leavers. Other students are required to pay fees.


Childcare assistance may be available on a limited basis for certain eligible students. A meeting will be held in the college during Registration Week where students can receive further information on the assistance available.

Part time BTEI students who are eligible for free tuition may apply for Childcare assistance through the college. Full time VTOS/BTEA students may be eligible for childcare assistance under the CETS scheme. Full time Social Protection/low income students may be eligible for subsidised childcare in a community crèche under the CCS scheme.

For further information on childcare supports go to

All information provided is correct at time of publication but is subject to change in line with Government Department regulations and requirements. Students are advised to check with relevant agencies regarding any changes related to entitlements.