Cash lifeline for third level students as Bank of Ireland’s €12.5m scholarship scheme opens its doors for applications for 2008

200 scholarships to third level valued at €5.5m over next two years, 500 Students already awarded scholarships totalling €7m

The Bank of Ireland Millennium Scholars Trust was established at the end of 1999, providing a fund of €12.5m over the first ten years of the new millennium to give access to disadvantaged people to third level education. The Trust is providing €5.5m over the final two years of the scheme to allow 200 deserving individuals pursue their educational goals irrespective of age, background or the discipline they wish to study. One hundred scholarships will be awarded this year and Bank of Ireland is calling on students wishing to attend college in autumn 2008 to submit applications now before the deadline of 3rd March 2008.

Scholarships are open to students from every discipline and application forms are available now from all Bank of Ireland branches nationwide or at and from the Bank of Ireland Millennium Scholars Trust office at 1850 221 721, 00 353 1 4498500 or The Trust also offers scholarships for students in the creative/performing arts and the later deadline for these applications of 1st April 2008 applies. Scholarships range in value from €3,000 per annum up to €40,000 over the period of study.

Previous beneficiaries of scholarships include students of pharmacology, culinary arts, acting, forensic investigation, environmental science, business studies, medicine and ballet. To date the Trust has spent €7m supporting almost 500 students pursue their dreams of attending college and almost 250 of these students have already graduated.

Commenting on the 2008 launch, Brian Goggin, CEO, Bank of Ireland Group said: “The final two years of this scholarship scheme will deliver a cash lifeline to nearly 200 students. The high standard of students applying to the Trust continues to strike us each year and I would like to stress that the Millennium Scholars Trust welcomes applicants from all disciplines, cultures and backgrounds and I personally encourage anybody who is facing barriers to 3rd level education to apply now for a scholarship.

Whilst all of our scholarship recipients experience significant obstacles such as financial hardship, social disadvantage or disability they also share the exceptional qualities of motivation, commitment and the desire to fulfil their dreams. The achievements of these students is often a source of inspiration and motivation for others to pursue their own educational ambitions and we look forward to awarding two hundred new scholarships over the final two years of the scheme”.

Applications to the Bank of Ireland Millennium Scholars Trust, which is governed by a board of independent Trustees, must be made through one of over 900 nominating bodies throughout the country. These include secondary schools and third level institutions in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, youth and community groups, arts and cultural organisations, local development companies and disability groups.

The National College of Ireland administers the Trust on behalf of the Trustees. It has developed the educational aspects of the programme, in addition to convening expert panels of educationalists and other specialists to carry out assessments, interview the short listed candidates and make recommendations as to the awarding of the scholarships.


Wednesday 5th February 2008

For further information:
Dermot O’Sullivan, Millennium Scholars Trust, Bank of Ireland, (01) 6044316

Mary Brennan, Group Corporate Communications, Bank of Ireland (01) 604 3838