The State Educational Loan Fund
The State Educational Loan Fund is a state owned bank that lends money and provides grants to students. The State Educational Loan Fund’s headquarters are in Oslo, though it also has regional offices in Stavanger, Bergen, Ørsta, Trondheim and Tromsø.
The idea behind the State Educational Loan Fund is that everyone who wants to should be able to take higher education. The opportunity to take higher education should be independent of geographical town of residence, age, gender, and financial and social circumstances. The State Educational Loan Fund was established in 1947.
Even though higher education is largely free in Norway, students must still have money to live on. Books and other educational materials cost money, as does housing, food and clothing. Many students have part time jobs while studying. However, the vast majority also borrow money from the State Educational Loan Fund.
Once the student has passed an exam, part of the loan is converted to a grant. Grants do not need to be paid back.
The State Educational Loan Fund currently has around 740,000 customers. During the period 2003-2004, 263,000 customers were provided with educational support. These borrowed a total of NOK 9.7 billion. The same customers received NOK 6.4 billion in grants during this period.You can read more about student loans on the State Educational Loan Fund’s website.
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