Search our site
Search our site

Care Experienced Students

A care experienced student is a young person who has spent time in public care (i.e. in a residential children's home or foster care). A care leaver will be currently supported by a local authority when they enrol at Kingston University. If you are unsure of your eligibility or are a current student please contact us to discuss your situation.

Financial Support

Care Leavers* who enrol at Kingston University and have been assessed as 'home' for fee purposes are eligible to receive a non-repayable Care Leaver bursary of £1500 per progressive year of study, as well as priority for the Kingston Bursary if all of the criteria are met. Please note that this is in addition to any other entitlement to financial support you may have.

* A care leaver is a person who is under the age of 25 when they enrol and who was in care until at least the age of 18 and are eligible for ongoing support from the local authority.


Care Leaver students are given priority for a place in halls and access to 365-day accommodation is available on request. We can also provide support if you wish to live in private accommodation, and signpost you to relevant services for comprehensive housing advice.

Specialist Support

Our dedicated and experienced KU Cares team will be available to support you through your application, enrolment, your time at University and through to Graduation. As well as a designated member of staff, the KU Cares team can advocate on your behalf throughout the University and within your local authority. We also signpost students to other opportunities to earn money and enhance your CV:

Graduation and Outduction

We support Care Leavers and Estranged students at graduation, by providing free gown hire, a free photography package and 2 free guest tickets. We also host a dinner to celebrate the successes of our students, and award a £1,000 graduation award to each, following an 'outduction' meeting with the KU Cares team.

Verification & Eligibility

In order to be eligible for this support you will need to apply for KU Cares (see below) and provide us with the contact details of your Social Worker/Personal Adviser/Key Worker and your local authority. The KU Cares team will get in touch with this person (with your consent) to confirm your eligibility.

How do I apply for this support?

  • Download our information for care leavers (PDF) booklet for more information.
  • Register your interest by applying for KU Cares (please ensure you tick the box declaring that you are a local authority care leaver / estranged / foyer resident).

Information for practitioners

  • If you are working with a care-experienced young person, that is looking to make an application to University, or to Kingston specifically, and you would like some guidance around applications, student finance etc. then please email
  • If you work for a local authority, virtual school or work with looked after children please note that we provide Higher Education training and events for looked after children. If you are interested then please contact us on

Find a course

Course finder

Find a course
Students on campus