Care experienced students

University Centre South Devon is committed to ensuring students who are care experienced or care leavers can access and succeed in their studies. We will support you from your first enquiry throughout your studies to graduation and into employment.  


Our Admissions team can support care leavers and those who have experienced care to complete their university application. We give you one-to-one support to understand the application process and write your personal statement. 

If you have spent time in the care of the local authority, you will be eligible for a contextual offer. A contextual offer is when the Admission team considers your application on its individual merits rather than just your qualifications against the entry requirements.  


Care leavers are normally eligible to be independently assessed for student finance. This means that your household income will not be taken into account when your student finance is calculated. 

Students who are care leavers will be automatically entitled to our full UCSD bursary offer of £1000 (2020/21 entry) at Level 4 and can apply for the means-tested bursary in Level 5/6. Apprentices are not eligible for the UCSD bursary.  

The UCSD Hardship Fund provides discretionary financial assistance to help you to access and remain in higher education.  

You may be eligible for some support from your Local Authority. Please contact your Local Authority Leaving Care Services in order to find out more about the funding and support they have available for you. 


UCSD offers a housing matching service for prospective and current students. If you need accommodation, the housing matching service will attempt to match you in a house-share with other UCSD students. All houses are vetted and checked.  


During your time as a student, the UCSD Wellbeing team will be on hand to support you with any wellbeing concerns. They have considerable experience of supporting students who are care leavers or have experienced care, and will help you to navigate any challenges you might experience.  

Student support 

The Student Support Hub can help you to succeed in your studies by providing information, advice and guidance related to study skills, disability, wellbeing and employability.