An estranged student is defined as "someone who no longer has the support of their family due to a breakdown in their relationship which has led to ceased contact. This might mean biological or adoptive parents or wider family members who have been responsible for supporting a student in the past".
If you are unsure if this applies to you, please contact us for further advice.
Types of support
We recognise that students who are estranged are under-represented in higher education and are committed to offering support for you to study at Heriot-Watt. We can provide access to the advice, guidance, financial support and accommodation required to help you succeed at university. We offer a named point of contact and support within the University, from pre-entry advice to support throughout your time with us.
If you are applying to Heriot-Watt, please contact our wider access officer Pat Reid to disclose your circumstances and we will discuss with you how we can help.
Remember you can make use of our support as much or as little as you wish.
How we can support you
How your application is considered
If you are estranged, you are eligible to apply for our Heriot-Watt Access Bursary. Students who are awarded an access bursary receive a total of £1,000 for each year of their undergraduate studies.
Students who are estranged are also eligible for support towards travel costs for each year of their undergraduate studies.
In addition, estranged students are given priority access to hardship funds and emergency funding from our Student Union Advice Hub if needed. You can access one-to-one financial advice from our drop-in service in the Student Service Centre. The drop-in service is available Monday to Friday between 10am and 4pm.
Get Ready for Success
Please contact Pat Reid, Colleges and Wider Access Officer, when you apply for accommodation so we can discuss the options available to you.
Safety and security
Advice and support
For advice, guidance and support when you apply, please contact Pat Reid, Colleges and Wider Access Officer.
If you are already a student at Heriot-Watt, you can also contact Emma Smail, Student Wellbeing and Transition Advisor (Edinburgh campus) or Gillian Mclaughlin, Student Advisor (Scottish Borders campus).
The Active Student Programme
During your time at Heriot-Watt, you might want to de-stress by engaging in sport and exercise. The Active Student Programme is an option available to you to help you get started, where you are entitled to a free 12-week exercise programme with support from an exercise professional.
For more information regarding referral to this programme please email Emma or Gillian as above.
The Stand Alone Pledge
- Colleges and Wider Access Officer
- +44 131 451 3784
- Student Wellbeing and Transition Advisor
- +44 131 451 4033
- Student Advisor
- +44 1896 89 2178