our students’ lives and opening their minds


DCU Access Programme

DCU operates the largest access programme of any university in Ireland with over 1,200 access students on campus in 2015/16. Our Access programme has enjoyed huge success over the years with 93% of access students completing their third level education. Almost 10,000 primary and secondary DEIS school students participate in ‘Access DCU’ initiatives annually which promote positive attitudes to education.

The Pathway to Brighter Futures will continue to support Access Scholarships for students experiencing socio-economic disadvantage to engage in higher education. It will also look to extend its support of DCU Access students to advance to Postgraduate level within the the university and continue to invest in Outreach education, which aims to enhance participation in education among underrepresented groups/communities.

The Access programme is transforming the lives of students, their families and their communities by creating equality of access to third level education in Ireland. It’s ability to engage with underrepresented communities further enriches DCU by raising awareness of higher education and the opportunities it can bring.



Project Team

Meet the Team
Ita Tobin
Ita is the Head of the Access Service at DCU and has over 17 years experience working directly in the area of equality of access to education. During this time, Ita has developed a wide array of university initiatives to engage students from socio-economically disadvantaged communities in higher education. Ita has also been instrumental in the development of numerous alternative admission pathways for underrepresented student groups from across Ireland to gain access to DCU.

We have always been ambitious in our aspirations and in this time of incredible change, our goals are greater than ever...but we can’t achieve them on our own.

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