Support while you study

We are dedicated to supporting care leavers and estranged students throughout their journey at the University of East London (UEL). This section contains information on the support available to care leavers and estranged students who are studying at UEL. You can find information on bursaries, accommodation, employment and more.

Financial support

To support care experienced and estranged students, we offer a non-repayable bursary of £1,000 for each academic year. For more information on the bursary and how to apply please see our Care Experienced and Estranged Students Bursary page.

There are a range of other bursaries available to care experienced and estranged students including our Hardship, Engagement and Progression Bursaries. To find out more information about the different scholarships and bursaries available please visit our bursaries section.

Care leavers who are aged under 25 and following a full-time programme of undergraduate study are eligible for a grant of £2,000 from their local authority. Care leaver students should contact their local authority for further details. You can find the contact details for your local authority by visiting your local council website.

Care experienced and estranged students who are struggling financially outside of term time may be eligible for additional summer financial support. To find out more, you must make an appointment with the dedicated contact for care experienced and estranged students.

Graduation Package – Care experienced and estranged students in their final year will be given an outro interview with their Designated Contact as well as being encouraged to engage with the Careers Coaching Team (CFSS). Once this has been fulfilled, you may be eligible for a graduation package to help with costs such as: gown hire, photos and family tickets.

If we don't know you were in care or estranged from your parents, we can't offer you this extra help. If you are a current UEL student and would like to disclose, please contact the dedicated contact at youngindependent@uel.ac.uk.

Accomodation

Priority is given to care experienced and estranged students who wish to stay in halls of residence at our Docklands campus. Care experienced and estranged students can remain in the halls of residence throughout the duration of their course, including over the summer break. Care experienced and estranged students may also be eligible to receive an additional £500 towards their rent costs.

For more information on the accommodation available, please visit our accommodation pages.

Wellbeing

The Wellbeing team offers confidential help on a range of physical and mental health issues as well as advice on how to receive specialist support. Care experienced and estranged students will have access to a named contact within the wellbeing team. You can have an initial support consultation with a wellbeing practitioner to discuss your feelings, needs and concerns. Telephone consultations are also available. The Wellbeing team can work collaboratively with the dedicated contact for care experienced and estranged students to help with your transition to UEL and offer longer term practical advice, pastoral and emotional support over the course of your academic studies.

Drop-in sessions

UEL offers dedicated drop-in sessions for care experienced and estranged students. You will be able to meet with our specialist Care Experienced and Estranged Students Advisor who can offer you advice and guidance on both local authority and university support, including Student Finance. The drop-in sessions are available at both Docklands and Stratford campuses. For more information on the drop-ins please contact your dedicated advisor on +44 (0)208 223 6407.

Employment

To boost your income during your time at UEL, we offer you the opportunity to earn while you learn with part-time work. Many students sign up to be a student ambassador or curriculum ambassador as it inspires the next generation of learners and looks great on your CV. To find out more information about this opportunity please email partnerships@uel.ac.uk.

There will be a range of job and volunteering opportunities taking place throughout the year featuring both internal and external vacancies.

The Centre for Student Success was created especially for students and alumni. They are a one-stop shop that provide you with a support network that enables you to grow and develop from your first few weeks’ right through to employment.

Mentors

We offer a peer-to-peer mentoring scheme for students. The scheme gives first-year students the opportunity to be mentored by a student in a higher year. Mentors can provide guidance, offer support and share knowledge about life at UEL, helping mentees to settle into a new environment. Mentoring can be conducted through face-to-face meetings, email or e-mentoring, messaging and text.

For further information on the different mentoring opportunities available, visit our Mentoring page.

Student union

Our Students' Union organises events and activities throughout the year and supports the creation of student-led societies. The Student Union can also help with housing, academic concerns and complaints. For more information please see our Student Union website.

After graduation

At the Centre for Student Success, we support our students for years after they have graduated. For further information on what we offer, please visit our Centre for Student Success alumni page.

UEL also has an alumni team that is committed to providing opportunities for communication, friendship and involvement. The Alumni team is dedicated to providing services and benefits that are accessible to all our graduates and to make sure what we offer is relevant and of use to our alumni community across the world.

Apps

Get started

The UEL “Get started” app is a useful tool which provides students with the information they need to know during their first few weeks at university. You can find information on welcome week, course induction sessions, how to get started on Moodle, social events at UEL and lots more. The app helps students to settle in and make the most of their time at UEL.

The UEL Get Started App is available to download for free on both Apple and Android.

Care leavers App

The Care Leavers App signposts cares leavers to services in their local area, it also provides information on activities and events. The app provides information on rights and entitlements. This app is available 24/7, it can be used without internet or Wi-Fi. The Care Leavers App is available for both iOS and Android platforms.

Mind of my own (MOMO)

The MOMO app can help care leavers organise their thoughts and communicate with their workers. It can also help young people who wish to make a complaint about the local authority. For more information about the app and how it works please visit the MOMO website.

Care leaver covenant

There is a responsibility to continue to help and support care leavers, and this App is part of that ongoing assistance. The Care Leaver Covenant App has been created to provide you with useful offers provided by organisations, charities and businesses across the UK, that are exclusive to care leavers, and are intended to help you start your career, stay healthy and make new friends.

Get in touch

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to get in contact with our Care Experienced and Estranged Students Advisor Messiah Odinma. You either call him directly on +44 (0)208 223 6407 or email him at youngindependent@uel.ac.uk

Useful links

Become charity

BECOME supports young people who are currently in or have recently left care. They can assist with providing advice and guidance around your rights and entitlements, through their Care Advice Line. They also offer a Free Coaching Programme, which can help young care leavers to reach their full potential.

Coram-Voice

Coram-Voice enables and equips children and young people to hold to account the services that are responsible for their care. They provide advice and support to care leavers which includes helping them to understand their rights and advocate for themselves. For more information on the support they offer please visit the Coram-Voice website or you can call them free of charge on +44 (0)808 800 5792 or text them on +44 (0)7758 670369.

Find out more

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