Government-Sponsored Bursaries: Examining Financial Support for Residents to Study at Home
This study examines the George Coles bursary program—a financial aid plan designed to “keep residents at home” so they can attend university, by providing a bursary in their first year of university following high school graduation. The study offers insight into higher education students’ financial circumstances, thereby suggesting policy direction for governments and higher education institutions wishing to retain talent and support student financing. The findings show that the resident students considered in the study appeared to value the bursary. However, none of the key metrics related to participation in or conversion to the home institution indicated that the bursary impacted enrolment or participation. This research highlights the importance of utilizing financial aid in combination with other policies to help students access higher education.