student working on a laptop

Hardship Fund

The University operates a Hardship Fund to support current Buckingham students experiencing financial difficulties due to unforeseen circumstances which is impacting on their studies, providing support through the following schemes:

Hardship fund

The Hardship Fund is available to support current students experiencing financial difficulties, due to an unforeseen circumstance which is impacting on their studies. The maximum award will be £500 (unless in special circumstances).

The fund cannot be used to support payment of courses fees or arrears of rent but can help students who qualify, with short-term living, travel and food expenses.

Access to hardship support is subject to full payment of course fees as well as continued attendance and engagement with studies.

Students seeking support with course fees are advised to contact the Student Fees Office via

E-food voucher scheme

To support students struggling to afford food or day-to-day essentials, we are able to award e-food vouchers.

The maximum award via the scheme (unless in special circumstances) will be four Tesco e-food vouchers. Each e-voucher provides students with a contribution towards one week of food shopping.

Loan Laptop scheme

To support students experiencing issues with their laptops, we have a small stock of laptops to loan on a short-term basis to help with coursework, assignments and exams at both our Buckingham and Crewe campus. Contact for more details.

Criteria and Eligibility

Please read and ensure you meet the below requirements before applying.


The criteria for Hardship support and or access to e-food vouchers include:

  • short-term, unforeseen emergencies and family/ personal issues affecting studies (but not linked to payment of course fees);
  • issues linked to accommodation deposits/advance payments (but not payment of accommodation arrears).

Criteria will also be linked to current attendance and engagement with your studies – evidence that a small payment will help support you to continue with your studies.



To be eligible to apply for a Hardship Fund award, a student should meet all of the following conditions:

  • Be registered as a full-time or part-time undergraduate or postgraduate student at the University of Buckingham for the academic year in which the hardship application is made.
  • Have taken all support available to them via Student Finance England (SFE) (or equivalent), or the Student Loans Company (SLC) where applicable.
  • Have taken all other support they may be entitled to, including welfare benefits and tax credits.
  • Show that across the academic year they have/will have, sufficient financial resources for their tuition, living expenses and any other course related costs.
  • Not be in arrears of tuition or on-campus accommodation fees.
  • Have adhered to the Student Code of Conduct throughout their programme.
  • Have good attendance and engagement with their studies.
  • Have not applied to the Hardship Fund on more than two occasions in the same academic year.
  • If in the first year of their course, not breach their student visa conditions (if applicable) by making an application to the fund that calls into question the funds declared in their visa application.

Application process

How to apply

How to apply

  • Please check you meet the criteria and eligibility above.
  • Complete the online application form and provide a supporting statement outlining:
  • What the current unexpected, short-term financial or digital hardship difficulties are
  • What caused the unexpected situation and when;
  • What steps have been taken to improve the current situation;
  • What support is being requested (if financial, include the total amount being requested);
  • How the requested support will be used.
  • Check you have provided all the necessary information;
  • Submit the application.

Hardship Fund application form

Wellbeing, Skills and Diversity staff are available to go through your application form with you if required.

We appreciate this is a time-sensitive issue and aim to acknowledge applications usually within 2 working days of receipt.

What happens next

What happens next?

After you have submitted the form, we will contact you to continue the application process.

Further evidence will be requested as part of the assessment process.

Application assessment process


To support the hardship application, all students must provide accurate, up to date and relevant evidence.

All evidence must be clear enough to read, in an accepted format (pdf, jpg, doc, xlsx, png, txt) and in English. Any evidence displayed in a language other than English, must be translated before being submitted as part of an application.

The evidence required for Hardship support and access to e-food vouchers include:

  • being fully registered at The University of Buckingham for the current academic year;
  • where applicable, showing how much student finance or loans you’ll get. UK full time students will be asked to provide:
  • a Student Finance England Assessment Letter stating household income;
  • Student Loans Company Confirmation of Support for fees and living costs.
  • household income e.g. via production of a Student Loans Company letter assessment;
  • PDF evidence of financial need/ bank statements for the last three months of all available bank accounts showing incoming and outgoing payments;
  • if requested, being able to show that across the academic year, you have/ will have sufficient funds to cover your full course fees and living costs.

To avoid delays in assessing your application, please check you have provided all the necessary evidence to support your application as incomplete applications will not be processed.

We appreciate this is a time-sensitive issue and aim to process applications usually within 2 working days of receipt.

Access to hardship support is subject to full payment of course fees as well as continued attendance and engagement with studies. The Panel will verify this information as part of the assessment process.

Additional evidence may be requested to help us understand your full financial situation.

Your application will be considered by the Hardship Panel, comprising the Director of Student Support Services, the Head of Wellbeing, Skills and Diversity, the Policy and Process Manager and up to two other members. A co-opted Lay member will be consulted to approve awards above the award threshold of £500.

An appeal against the decision of the Hardship Panel will be considered by the Registrar.