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SHU Progress

SHU Progress


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“They are all kind and helpful people and understand people's situation no matter what it is”
former SHU Progress student

It has been of great support and a truly essential contact bridge for starting university. Very friendly and approachable members of the team who seem to do their best to help”
                         former SHU Progress student

SHU Progress provides support for applicants whose personal circumstances might mean that there are barriers to going to university.

The scheme provides additional support in the year of application and throughout the application process, including your to transition to becoming a university student.

What support do I get?

As an applicant to Sheffield Hallam University, SHU Progress offers:

  • A personal contact at the university who will be there to provide advice and answer your questions throughout the year
  • - Referrals to specialist teams within the university such as Careers and Employability, Funding, Wellbeing and Inclusive Support (dependent on your circumstances)

    - Practical support throughout the year with key stages of the application process such as UCAS, Student Finance, Accommodation, Disabled Student Support and transition etc.

  • Exclusive and personal visits to the university, giving you the chance to meet current students and staff who can advise and support you
  • Support with the costs of visiting the university for our events, and for open days
  • Support with making the best application to us, including access to workshops on preparing for interviews
  • Exclusive access to the SHU Progress Members' Area which provides updates of relevant additional financial or personal support, as well as more general support throughout the year

If you are in or leaving care, are estranged from your family, have caring responsibilities, have experienced significant extenuating circumstances, are homeless/at risk of homelessness, are from a refugee/asylum seeking background, or are from a Black British* background, SHU Progress also offers additional consideration during the admissions process. This means we will share with our selectors that you’re on SHU Progress for them to consider when making a decision on your application to the university at confirmation,  interview, or offer making stage. Please note in order to be eligible for this support, it is important you join SHU Progress before or at the time of submitting your application. In line with UCAS’s measures to safeguard bias with the admissions process, we will not disclose the reason you are on the scheme where it relates to your ethnicity.

You can view this leaflet (PDF, 272.9KB) for more information.

Am I eligible?

SHU Progress is available to all undergraduate applicants who meet one or more of the criteria below:

  • You are a care leaver

    You have spent three or more months in local authority care while at school, from Year 10 onwards. You will also be 25 or younger when you start your course.

  • You are estranged from your parents

    You are estranged from your immediate family, being estranged from someone means you’re no longer in contact or on friendly terms with them.

  • You are care experienced

    You have had experience of care in the past, but do not fall into one of the above categories (care leaver, or estranged).

  • You are a carer

    You care for a family member or friend which could be due to illness, disability, mental health condition or addiction. You may or may not be in receipt of carers allowance.

    Please note parental responsibilities do not automatically mean you have caring responsibilities, unless you are providing care for somebody with additional needs.

  • You have a disability

    You have a disability which affects your everyday life. This could include learning difficulties like dyslexia and dyspraxia, mental health issues, or ongoing medical conditions.

  • You have experienced circumstances which have affected or interrupted your L3 studies

    You have experienced a serious, recent event which was outside your control and has significantly affected or interrupted your level three studies (i.e. had a negative impact upon your ability to prepare for or take a level three assessment).

  • You are experiencing financial difficultly or hardship

    You come from a household with an annual income of less than £25,000, or you are experiencing financial hardship which affects your choice of places to study.

  • You are unable to move away from your home area to go to university

    You have circumstances that mean you need to be able to study close to home, these could include cultural reasons or family commitments.

  • You are a mature student

    You are aged 25 or over and are returning to learning after a break.

  • You are homeless or at risk of homelessness

    You may be homeless/risk of homelessness if you:

    • are sleeping rough
    • are staying in a hostel or night shelter
    • are staying with friends or family on a temporary basis
    • are forced to live apart from your family or someone you would normally live with because your accommodation isn't suitable
    • live in unsuitable housing
    • don't have rights to stay where you are

    If you are if you are homeless (or at risk of homelessness) and have no contact with your parents, we consider you to be estranged, see above criteria

  • You are from a refugee or asylum seeking background

    You are unable to remain in your home country due to trauma or persecution and cannot return for safety reasons.

  • You are from a military family

    You are from an armed forces family and your parents/carers served in the armed forces during the first 25 years of your life.

  • You are a military veteran or service leaver

How do I join SHU Progress?

The scheme is now open for nominations for students wanting to start at Sheffield Hallam in September 2022. If you are a student who falls into one of the groups we support, but do not have a supporter or would struggle to find a supporter to nominate you onto the scheme, please contact the SHU Progress team at or (0114) 225 4777 for further guidance.

You can join SHU Progress in the year you are applying to university. We strongly encourage you to join SHU Progress as early as possible (just before or at the time you are applying to university).

We require you to be nominated to SHU Progress by a supporter such as:

  • your teacher or support worker in college
  • a social worker
  • your local authority personal advisor
  • Foyer or supported housing support workers
  • someone from a supporting charity such as Sheffield Young Carers
  • a healthcare professional

The nomination can be made using this form.

The person nominating you must have your consent to share your personal information with us before completing an application form. We also request you read the privacy notice (PDF, 883.6KB) before being nominated so you are aware of how we use your data.

You can share this leaflet (PDF, 272.9KB) with your referee for their information.

"SHU progress helped me gain more confidence and made me certain I could go to university"
                         - former SHU Progress student

What happens next?

Applications are reviewed upon receipt and if you are accepted you will receive an email from your personal contact welcoming you to SHU Progress.

If we have any queries with your application we will contact the person who nominated you for SHU Progress.

Any Questions?

Please call us on 0114 225 4777 or email the team at

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