The applications for the Gates Cambridge International Scholarships (UK) 2022-23 are now open! Each year Gates Cambridge offers c.80 full-cost scholarships to outstanding applicants from countries outside the UK to pursue a full-time postgraduate degree in any subject available at the University of Cambridge.
The Gates Cambridge International Scholarship
The Gates Cambridge Scholarship programme was established in October 2000 by a donation of US$210m from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to the University of Cambridge; this is the largest ever single donation to a UK university.
There are at least 225 Scholars from 50 countries studying in Cambridge at any one time who pursue the full range of subjects available at the university and are spread across its departments and Colleges.
The Gates Cambridge mission is to build a global network of future leaders committed to improving the lives of others. It aims to achieve this mission by selecting outstanding scholars, providing them with financial and non-financial support at one of the world’s leading universities and facilitating community building at and beyond Cambridge.
A Gates Cambridge Scholarship covers the full cost of studying at Cambridge. It also provides additional, discretionary funding.
The Core Cost includes:
- University Composition Fee
- A maintenance allowance for a single student
- One economy single airfare at both the beginning and end of the course
- Inbound visa costs & the cost of the Immigration Health Surcharge
The Discretionary Costs include:
- Academic development funding
- Family allowance
- Field Work
- Maternity/Paternity Funding
- Hardship Funding
Who can Apply?
- A citizen of any country outside the United Kingdom
- Applying to pursue one of the following full-time residential courses of study at the University of Cambridge:
- One year postgraduate course (with some exceptions)
Courses NOT Eligible for Gates Cambridge Scholarship
- Any Undergraduate degree such as BA (undergraduate) or BA affiliated (a second BA)
- Business Doctorate (BusD)
- Master of Business (MBA)
- Master of Finance (MFin)
- MBBChir Clinical Studies
- MD Doctor of Medicine degree (6 years, part-time)
- Graduate Course in Medicine (A101)
- Part-time degrees
- Non-degree courses
- Academic excellence
- Reasons for choice of course:
- PhD applicants (and most research MPhil applicants): Make contact with a potential supervisor with whom they will develop a research project, a summary of which is part of the application.
- You will need to demonstrate that you have the academic background and the necessary skills and expertise to complete the course.
- Taught MPhil and other applicants need to make a strong case for how completing the proposed course will facilitate their career plans.
- Gates Cambridge seeks Scholars who will have an academically transformative experience at Cambridge, so it is important that you fully research and justify the course for which you are applying.
- A commitment to improving the lives of others: By providing evidence of their past, current and future commitment to the societies in which they will live and work.
- A capacity for leadership: Applicants should provide evidence of their leadership experience to date and indicate the ways in which their leadership skills may have impact in the future careers.
When to Apply?
- US citizens resident in the USA
- Application Deadline: 13 October 2021
- All other eligible applicants
- Dependent on your course – either early December 2021 or early January 2021
Applicants submit their application for admission and funding (Gates Cambridge and other funding) via the University’s Graduate Application Portal.
Note: Gates Cambridge requires PhD applicants only to submit a research proposal as part of their application for funding.
Most PhD applicants will upload a research proposal as part of their application for admission, but where this is not the case a research proposal is required to apply for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship.
If you are applying for a degree other than the PhD you do not need to submit a research proposal as part of your materials of the Gates Cambridge Scholarship.
Important Sections of the Application Process
In the Funding Section
Statement: In no more than 3000 characters (approximately 500 words) please explain why you are applying for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship and how you meet the four main criteria.
You should use your background, achievements, experiences and future aims to show how you would be a good fit with the Gates Cambridge programme.
Research proposal (PhD applicants only): Most PhD applicants will upload a research proposal as part of their application for admission, but where this is not the case, a research proposal is required to apply for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship. If you are applying for a degree other than the PhD you do not need to submit a research proposal as part of your materials of the Gates Cambridge Scholarship.
Gates Cambridge reference: In addition to 2 academic references for admission, Gates Cambridge applicants submit a reference about their fit with the scholarship.
In the application form, the questions asked are:
Please give your assessment of the applicant’s suitability for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship. These are awarded on the following criteria: intellectual ability, justification for the choice, of course, a commitment to improving the lives of others and leadership capacity.
- How highly would you rank the applicant for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship?
- On what overall group are you basing this ranking?
- What is the size of this group?
Referees are also asked how they rate the applicant for the scholarship: exceptional, strong, not strong, weak.
They may paste/type up to 4,000 characters into the online reference or upload a separate letter.
- Departmental ranking: Academically outstanding candidates
- Shortlisting: The list of all nominated candidates is divided into broad subject areas and passed to the Shortlisting Committees. Shortlisting for interviews are done on the basis of:
- Academic excellence
- Reasons for choice of course
- A commitment to improving the lives of others
- A capacity for leadership
- Interview: A short interview to assess how the shortlisted candidates meet all 4 Gates Cambridge criteria and Scholars are selected after the interview.
- Interview candidates will be sent full details of the format and arrangements.
- You will be invited for a 20-25 minute interview and, depending on where you are, you can interview either in person or by Skype.
- Each interview has four main sections:
- Welcome and introduction
- Gates Cambridge
- What you know about the Gates Cambridge Scholarships
- Your motivation for applying
- Why you think you could be a Gates Cambridge Scholar
- Your thoughts on the opportunities and responsibilities that a prestigious, full-cost scholarship at one of the world’s leading universities brings
- Academic and career plans
- Your academic work to date – can you convincingly communicate your passion for, and the importance of, your chosen subject?
- Your proposed degree at Cambridge – can you provide a convincing justification for your choice of course?
- Your career plans – can you convincingly link your application for both a Gates Cambridge Scholarship and your proposed course at Cambridge to your future career plans?
- You may also be asked probing intellectual or ethical questions, to which there are no ‘right’ answers.
- Final thoughts and questions: A chance to add anything further you would like the interview panel to consider, and to ask any questions you may have (having no questions to ask is also fine).
All inquiries about applications to be sent initially via email to firstname.lastname@example.org, OR click here for the FAQs.
Click here to know more about the Gates Cambridge Scholarship.