The Ministry of Education (MOE) is determined to ensure that every child is given equal access to quality education. Minister for Education Lawrence Wong commented that his ministry will make sure that students from disadvantaged backgrounds do not have their learning disproportionately affected by Covid-19. As such, many educational institutions and organizations have come together to provide various support and measures to help these students.
If you require financial assistance during your schooling period, we have pooled together a list for you below.
1. Get Immediate Financial Assistance through Your University Relief Fund
On top of the standard financial aid that students can apply for, the various universities have come up with support initiatives to help their students who are facing unexpected financial hardships during Covid-19.
Nanyang Technological University (NTU) offers various schemes in their NTU COVID-19 Relief Package. If you require immediate assistance, you can apply for the OneNTU Fund or if you have urgent needs, you can register for the NTU Priorities Fund. All financial aid will be dependent on the applicant’s circumstances and needs, and an extended one-off philanthropic grant will be given to support students in need. If you are a student from NTU, you will have to complete a single online application form.
To help full-time National University of Singapore (NUS) students who are financially affected due to Covid-19, the NUS Students’ Union (NUSSU) initiated the NUSSU Unity Relief Fund. Successful applicants will receive a one-time financial aid of $250. If you are a NUS student and would like to find out more about the eligibility and application process, the information can be found in this document.
The SMU Emergency Financial Grant is a one-off emergency financial grant to help Singapore Management University (SMU) undergraduates who are facing unforeseen financial crises and require interim financial assistance. The grant can amount to a maximum of $2,000, depending on a case by case basis. SMU undergraduates who wish to apply can do so via the university’s online platform.
The Student Relief Fund at SIT (COVID-19) was established to assist undergraduates in Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT). Each grant is applicable for one academic year, with a value of up to $2,000. All value of grants will be awarded based on severity of need. The application for SIT students is currently closed, but will re-open again soon on 1 November 2020.
Students from Singapore University of Social Science (SUSS) who require assistance can apply for the SUSS Student Care Fund. The value of the grant for each eligible recipient is $1,000 which will be given as outright cash. The care fund can only be applied once a year, and there is no bond or repayment required for this grant. If you are from SUSS, you can submit an online application along with your supporting documents.
2. Get Subsidised Fees with the Various Government Loan Schemes
The government loan schemes — Tuition Fee Loan and Study Loan — are financial support available for students who are taking their diploma, undergraduate or postgraduate programmes.
As part of the Government’s Resilience Budget, MOE has suspended all repayment and interest for the loan schemes for all autonomous university and polytechnic graduates for one year, from 1 June 2020 to 31 May 2021.
Students in polytechnics and autonomous universities can apply for the Tuition Fee Loan to help cover a certain percentage of their tuition fee. The Tuition Fee Loan covers up to 75% of subsidised fees payable for polytechnic students and up to 90% of the subsidised Singapore Citizen fees payable for university students. SMU students can directly approach their institution, while students in NTU or NUS can approach DBS or OCBC. All other students can approach DBS.
If you are a student who has taken up the maximum Tuition Fee Loan and has a gross monthly per capita income of $2,700 or less, you can apply for the Study Loan. For polytechnic students, the loan covers up to 25% of subsidised fees payable and a living allowance of $2,000 per year. Whereas for university students, the loan covers up to 10% of subsidised fees payable and a living allowance of $3,600 per year. To apply, students have to approach their respective institutions.
3. Own an Affordable Computer under the NTU PC Plus Programme
With Home Based Learning (HBL) becoming the new normal for students, building an all-inclusive digital society where all students have equal access to infocomm is crucial. Hence, Info-communications Media Development Authority of Singapore (IMDA) has established the NEU PC Plus Programme. This support programme aims to give students an opportunity to own a brand new computer at a subsidised price. Eligible students will also have an option to bundle three years of free fibre broadband subscription.
Students who wish to apply must be aged 25 and below, and studying in a school under the approved list on the website. All interested applicants have to fill up the application form (can be found in the website or obtained from their respective school) and submit together with the relevant documents to their school.
In these challenging times, don’t hesitate to reach out for support. Many are here to ensure that your learning does not get affected and so that you can focus on your studies. Press on!