Leticia Awuku, 39, denied one charge of fraud in claiming £26,330.75 from the NHS student bursary by saying she had indefinite leave to remain in the UK.
Awuku, of Highway View, Arleston, Telford, said she was given a letter granting her leave to remain in the UK and false stamps by her father.
Mr David Bright, prosecuting, said: "The application was submitted in May 2007 with certain documents.
"In addition to the application she sent a false letter dated August 25 2001, saying she could remain indefinitely in the UK.
"We are unable to tell you when or how she entered the UK.
"She says all of it was done by or on behalf of her father."
Awuku, originally from Ghana, studied full time between 2007 and 2011 at Kingston University and completed a diploma in nursing, Shrewsbury Crown Court heard on Wednesday.
Mr Bright said that Awuku was arrested in May 2012 by enforcement officers on suspicion of illegally entering the UK.
He added: "Knowing that your father is deceased, you're using him as an excuse for your criminality."
Awuku told the court she respected and trusted her father, but was "terrified of him".
The trial is ongoing.