Westmeath County Council has announced that the first instalment of Third Level Maintenance Grants 2009 will be paid to approved first-time grant applicants and continuing approved students by the week ending Friday October 30.
The council is proceeding with this instalment in light of the current economic climate, with a view to alleviating the financial pressures on parents and students alike.
These payments are made to the colleges and universities directly, and the approved student receives the grant instalment from the college. The total grant instalment will amount to approximately €670,000. Westmeath County Council must then apply to the Department of Education for recoupment of these grants.
Westmeath County Council has received approximately 380 new applications for third level grants for the academic year 2009/2010. This compares to 170 new applications received last year, 2008/2009.
A total of 365 students are also in receipt of grant applications made in 2008 or previously, and still in full-time education.
To date, all 380 new applications have been assessed, with 234 fully completed applications being awarded grant assistance. Westmeath County Council expects to complete processing of all new applications within the next two to three weeks.