Financial hardship

The rising cost of living, unexpected crises or expenses can affect anyone, but can especially present challenges to students on a limited income. If you’re finding it tough financially we encourage you to connect with or make use of the services provided below.

A student receiving advice on phone

Financial Counselling

National Debt helpline

Help with managing debt and getting your finance back on track. Call 1800 007 007 or access webchat and information on their website.


Financial counselling service provided by the Salvation Army. Use their website to find a financial counsellor near you.

Mobstrong Debt Helpline

Free legal advice and financial counselling service for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples from anywhere in Australia. Call 1800 808 488 or find out more on the Mobstrong website.

Northern Rivers Community Gateway

Residents in Northern NSW can access Financial Counselling appointments in Lismore, Grafton, Ballina or Murwillumbah

Ask Izzy

Connects people in need with housing, a meal, money help, and much more. It's quick, free, and anonymous.

Ask Izzy

Help with cost of living

If you live near campus, join your student association to access regular free and discounted food, such as stocked student lounges and free lunches:

  • CoastRs - Gold Coast Student Association
  • LEXSA - Lismore and Online Student Association 
  • CHSA - Coffs Harbour Student Association

There are also community services and charities that can help with food relief. Find a service near you:

Steps that may assist in paying your utilities are:

  • Reduce your usage
  • Contact your provider – make sure you are getting the best deal
  • Check if you are eligible and apply for a rebate or voucher. There are national and state government schemes
  • Seek assistance from a financial counsellor who can help you negotiate payment plans
  • Find out more about paying your bills on the Moneysmart website

Full-time domestic students may be able to access public transport concessions. 


Students residing in New South Wales may be eligible for a NSW Tertiary Student Concession discount. In Sydney and surrounding areas this is via an Opal Concession Card and for the remainder of NSW this is via a Transport Concession Entitlement Card. For eligibility and how to apply, visit: Transport for NSW Eligibility.


Students residing in Queensland may be eligible for travel concession which entitles the passenger to 50 per cent off fares on approved public transport throughout Queensland. For eligibility and how to apply, visit: Translink’s Tertiary Transport Concession


Students residing in Victoria may be eligible for travel concession which entitles the passenger to 50 per cent off fares on approved public transport throughout Victoria. For eligibility and how to apply, visit: Public Transport Victoria.

LEXSA administers a fortnightly Childcare Assistance Rebate for Students who are LEXSA members and SCU students. Find out more and how to apply on the LEXSA Support webpage.


All enrolled SCU students have free access to Microsoft Office on up to five personal compatible PCs, Macs, and Mobile devices. This includes the following Applications:

  • Word
  • Excel
  • Powerpoint
  • Endnote
  • Access
  • Publisher
  • Outlook
  • Skype
  • Onedrive

See the Technology Services support article on how to download Microsoft Office

SCU students can also access a free Premium Grammarly account. Find out how to access your SCU Grammarly account


LEXSA, CoastRs and CHSA all provide printing and binding at a discounted rate for their members. LEXSA and CoastRs support online students with free postage for their printing.   


Are you a student needing help?

Security and support services

1800 SC HELP / 1800 72 4357