Our professional staff provide financial advice to help you manage your study expenses and living costs.

Make an appointment to talk to a financial adviser, use our handy resources and learn about your loan and scholarship options.

Scholarships & grants

Bushfire fund

In 2020, assistance grants of up to $2000 are available for bushfire-affected students, for study materials and support services, accommodation and related requirements.

To discuss your application, email [email protected].

COVID-19 Student Support Fund

Victoria University is committed to providing financial assistance to students whose academic performance is, or will be, adversely affected by financial constraints due to the impact of the COVID-19.

We are offering one-off COVID-19 student support grants for eligible students.

Scholarships

Victoria University offers scholarships to help University and TAFE students with their living and education costs.

If you receive Youth Allowance, Austudy, or Abstudy, you may also be eligible for one of the following:

Budget guidance & resources

There are many online resources to help you budget and save money. Here are some that we recommend.

General budgeting

Budget Your Money is a government website calculator that helps check:

  • where your money is going
  • if you are spending more than you can afford
  • that your money is going towards your priorities.

It allows you to enter weekly, fortnightly, monthly and annual expenses without the need to convert.

Our cost of living estimates will help you figure out how much it costs to live in Melbourne.

Accommodation finance resources

Check out our rental advice for information about bonds, tenancy rights, and selecting an affordable suburb near our campuses.

Other resources to help you reduce your living costs and ecological footprint:

The Australian Government provides payments to students who are studying, such as Youth Allowance, Austudy, Abstudy etc. All of these payments have eligibility criteria and will require you to apply directly to the Department of Human Services – Centrelink.

We've listed here the student payments available from the Australian Government. 

You can also use Centrelink's Payment & Service Finder to help find what payments you may be eligible for based on your circumstances.

If you are enrolled in a TAFE course at the level of Certificate IV or below with VU Polytechnic we strongly recommend that you apply for a Low Income Health Care Card. It provides you with access to reduced TAFE Tuition fees. Even if you are not eligible for other student payments, you may still be eligible for a Low Income Heath Care Card.

To be eligible for youth allowance you must be one of the following:

  • 18 to 24 and studying full-time16 to 17,
  • studying full time and either independent or needing to live away from home to study 16 to 17,
  • studying full time and have completed year 12 or equivalent
  • 16 to 24 and doing a full time Australian Apprenticeship.

Find out more or apply for youth allowance.

Financial help if you're 25 years or older and studying or an Australian Apprentice.

To get this you must be:

  • 25 or older
  • a full time student in an approved course or Australian Apprenticeship
  • under the income test limits.

Find out more or apply for Austudy.

A group of payments for Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander students or apprentices.

To be eligible for Abstudy you must be:

  • an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander Australian
  • studying an approved course, Australian Apprenticeship or traineeship
  • not getting another payment to study or train.

Find out more or apply for Abstudy.

Financial help if you have a permanent physical, intellectual or psychiatric condition that stops you from working.

To get the Disability Support Pension (DSP), you need to meet both:

  • non-medical rules
  • medical rules.

Find out more or apply for the Disability Support Pension.

This is the main income support payment while you’re a young child’s main carer. This payment is also for job seekers who are main carers of young children.

To get Parenting Payment you must:

  • be under the income and asset test limits
  • meet principal carer rules
  • care for a child under 8 if you’re single or under 6 if you’re partnered
  • meet residence rules
  • not have claimed before the birth of the child.

Find out more or apply for the parenting payment.

A regular extra payment to help with study costs if you get certain income support from Centrelink.

If you are receiving the Disability Support Pension or the Parent Payment we recommend that you find out more about the pensioner education supplement if you are:

  • getting a Centrelink payment that has this benefit as an add on
  • studying an approved course
  • a full-time student or a part-time student in special circumstances.

Centrelink Advance Payments can assist with living and study costs.

If you receive Centrelink payments (including youth allowance, Austudy, Abstudy, parenting payment and disability support pension) you are eligible to apply for a Centrelink Advance Payment.

Low income health care cards provide concessions for health care, public transport and living costs (such as gas, electricity and water). They are issued to students who receive Youth Allowance, Austudy or Abstudy.

Even if you are not eligible for one of these payments, you can still apply for low income health care card.

The following websites provide essential information on topics you need to know as a student studying in Australia such as:

  • before you start studying at TAFE or University
  • HECS-Help Loans
  • VET Student Loans
  • how to manage your money whilst you are at TAFE or University.

StudyAssist website - Information for students about government assistance for financing tertiary study.

MoneySmart - tips on student life and money.

Loans

Student loans

Our Student loans team offers up to $500 interest-free loans. Strict conditions apply and this should be considered a last resort.

To find out more, make an appointment with a Senior Advisor or visit a VUHQ (student service centre).

Trade Support Loans (Australian Apprentices)

The Australian Government provides a Australian Apprentices Trade Support Loans Program. The loans are paid in instalments totalling up to $20,000 over four years to help apprentices with everyday costs while they complete their apprenticeship.

Tax return advice

For many years until 2020, Victoria University has hosted a free Tax Help Service from July to October, where an ATO-trained volunteer provided one-to-one assistance and support to help students complete their tax return online.

In 2020 due to the impact of COVID-19 the service will operate differently.

Contact the ATO directly on 13 28 61 (or through an interpreter on 13 14 50) to determine if you are eligible for the Tax Help program and what your assistance options are.  This includes:

  • face-to-face assistance (when and where it becomes available again)
  • Virtual Tax Help (online through screen share)
  • phone assistance with a trained Tax Help volunteer.

The ATO will also extend help across to clients who cannot lodge online and can support them with questions around Tax Pack lodgement and any other situation that may arise. 

To prepare make sure you have created a myGov account and linked it to the ATO. Doing this will make for a better experience and provide you with greater options for assistance.

ATO website

 

Appointments for financial advice

Make an appointment with a Senior Adviser

For personalised support, you can make an appointment with a Senior Adviser for assistance with issues that are impacting your studies.

Come to talk to us about finances, housing, welfare, Centrelink and other issues.

Make an appointment with a Senior Adviser.