VAMK, University of Applied Sciences  
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Financial Aid

How to Apply for Financial Aid

To finance the studies, the student who owns Finnish nationality, has a possibility to apply for financial aid from KELA (National Pensions Institute). The purpose of the financial aid is to provide an income during the studies. The forms of aid are study grant, housing supplement and government-guaranteed student loans.

It is possible to file for aid for the whole study time at one time. The months of the financial aid are nine per year.

Financial aid is also available for studies abroad, provided that the studies correspond to the studies entitled to aid in Finland and are part of a degree taken in Finland.

The student is to inform the Centre for Student Financial Aid of the change of address or changes in rent. The student is responsible to monitor his/her earned income within the annual exempt amount. If the student, according to the taxation data, has exceeded the exempt amount, the student is required to pay back the equivalent amount of aid plus 15% interest.

If the exempt amount is exceeded, it is possible to return the paid aid by the end of March. Months in which part of the aid is returned voluntarily by the dead-line are added back to your entitlement for aid.

Application forms and further information is available from the Student Office and Study Counsellors.

More exact information is found in KELA’s guide of financial aid which is available from KELA offices or Student Offices. Web site on financial aid can be found at:

There is also a telephone service that deals with matters of financial aid at polytechnics between 9 am and 12 am at number 0204346650 or general information between 8.15 am and 4 pm at number 0204346770.

Financial Aid Committee

The Polytechnic has a statutory financial aid committee. Its operation has been described in the statute more closely.

The function of the Financial Aid Committee is to:

  • oversee and give a report on the advance of studies of a certain student, either on their own initiative or on request of KELA or the student.
  • specify the sufficient quantity of studies during summer season or studies abroad and in particular case give a report to KELA.

To do so, the Financial Aid Committee regularly monitors the student’s advancement in studies, gives admonitions and, if necessary, discontinue the financial aid. The financial aid is discontinued if the student has not obtained on an average 3.2 credit units for each month eligible for aid. (Opintotukilaki ja –asetus 1.8.2004). If the Aid has been discontinued, it can be continued when the student has received enough credit units.

The Secretary of the Financial Aid Committee in the Polytechnic is

Ms. Susan Sundqvist
Tel. (06) 326 3017, or 040 733 4174

The Secretary also receives the applications filed with the Committee.

The Financial Aid Committee assembles when necessary.

The decisions made by the Committee are binding upon KELA.

Summer Aid

The student with Finnish nationality is eligible for financial aid during the summer if he/she studies or is in practical training without pay or if the pay is in average less than € 505 per month. The studies can be pursued e.g. at open university, summer university or other institutes that provide courses that can be recognised as compulsory or free-choice studies. The loan guarantee and housing supplement are available though your pay is more than € 505.

The Head of Department approves the summer studies and the teacher responsible for practical training or the Placement Coordinator approves the summer training.

Summer studies can be regarded as full-time if the student obtains on an average at least 3.2 credit units of degree studies for each month eligible for aid.

The financial aid is always applied in advance through the Vaasa Polytechnic Financial Aid Committee. The aid will not be paid retroactively.

The student must enclose the study plan for the summer and the report on summer aid with the application (form OTm).

The forms are available in the Student Offices and on the Polytechnic website.

Applications are admitted to the Student Office or the Secretary of the Financial Aid Committee, not to KELA.

Exceeding the Maximum Aid Period

Students who are delayed in their studies can be granted an extended aid period for a valid reason, such as illness or difficult life situation. Valid reasons do not include e.g. study arrangements, change of field of study or activities in the Student Union.

The application for the extension for the aid period is filed with the Financial Aid Committee (form OTm, report on change in circumstances) together with an account of reasons for delay and a certificate from the polytechnic of the studies left and a study plan. The forms are available from the Student Offices and on the Polytechnic website.

Applications are admitted to the Student Office or to the Secretary of the Financial Aid Committee, not to KELA.

Document maintainer: Elisabeth Malka
Last updated: 15.9.2004, Jarkko Ala-Louvesniemi
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