Financial aid is available through grants and loans. Grants are one-off or ongoing payments that don’t usually have to be paid back provided you complete your course. Loans are one-off or ongoing payments that must be paid back after you finish your course.
Grants and loans for Swiss students and overseas students are generally paid out by the canton where the students’ parents are tax residents.
Students who have been tax residents in the Canton of Bern for at least two years are able to apply for cantonal grants and loans. Applications should be submitted to the Financial Aid Office at the Department of Education.
Further information (incl. financial aid calculator):
The websites ausbildungsbeiträge.ch, stipendium.ch and European Funding Guide cover all the key information about grants in Switzerland and overseas.
The City of Bern also offers students support under certain circumstances. For more information, see the City of Bern website.
Foundations and funds
There are also numerous private foundations and funds that offer financial support to students. The electronic foundation directory administered by the Federal Department of Home Affairs offers a comprehensive summary of these organisations and can be searched by keywords (e.g. student, research, financial aid, etc.). Other sources include the foundation directories for individual cantons and private foundations.
HKB-Fund for the Payment of the Tuition Fees
Many HKB students live in precarious financial circumstances. The opportunities to earn money while undertaking demanding and time-consuming studies are limited. And the cost of living in Switzerland is one of the highest in all of Europe. A doctor’s bill, a healthy diet, and paying the rent or semester and examination fees can become pressing problems. The HKB scholarship fund provides targeted support in such cases. If you are a student at HKB and require the assistance or advice of the scholarship fund, please complete the corresponding application form and submit it to the secretary’s office of your degree programme. The deadline for applications for a semester fee waiver is 15 May to 15 June (for the following autumn semester), or 15 November to 15 December (for the following spring semester).
The following foundations offer funding specifically to BFH students and students from other universities: