It is worth checking out what college scholarships are on offer
An extensive array of scholarships on offer to new entrants to higher education provide valuable financial and other supports to students.
Scholarships may be used to recognise significant potential or achievement, to encourage study in a particular discipline or to attract students who otherwise might not enter college.
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Scholarships rewarding exceptional Leaving Cert results or excellence in sport or the creative and performing arts are common, but the growing list includes recognition of engagement in other aspects of life, such as citizenship or entrepreneurship.
Some colleges have introduced Sanctuary Scholarships for students from refugee and asylum-seeking communities. No two colleges have the same offering and, while choosing suitable courses is the golden rule when filling out the CAO form, it is a good idea to check out scholarship possibilities.
For a full list of 2019 CAO courses, click here
The benefits vary between scholarships and between colleges. Aside from financial incentives, sports scholars place a high value on the academic mentoring they receive to help them to balance their studies with the rigours of training and competition.
Some scholarships allow entry on reduced CAO points in recognition of time devoted to the pursuit of excellence in a non-academic talent at the expense of study. Some come with a guarantee of on-campus accommodation.
For some scholarships, it is necessary for students to apply, while others are automatically awarded if students satisfy certain criteria.
It is not only colleges that award scholarships. For instance, Intel sponsors Women in Technology Scholarships, worth €3,000-a-year, for female school-leavers entering specified degree courses in science, technology, and engineering.