Gates Cambridge Scholarship
One of the most prestigious and generous scholarships in the world is the Gates Cambridge Scholarship, which offers full funding for international students who want to pursue a postgraduate degree at the University of Cambridge. The scholarship was established in 2000 by a donation of US$210 million from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, with the aim of creating a global network of future leaders committed to improving the lives of others.
The Gates Cambridge Scholarship is not just a financial award, but also a unique opportunity to join a community of scholars who share a passion for learning, research, and social impact. The scholarship provides academic, personal, and professional development support, as well as access to the resources and networks of the University of Cambridge and the Gates Cambridge Alumni Association. The scholarship also fosters a sense of responsibility and leadership among its recipients, who are expected to use their skills and knowledge to contribute to the common good of society.
The Gates Cambridge Scholarship is funded and administered by the Gates Cambridge Trust, which is a registered charity in England and Wales. The Trust works closely with the University of Cambridge and its departments and colleges to select and support the scholars. The Trust also organises various events and activities for the scholars, such as orientation, workshops, seminars, conferences, and social gatherings.
The Gates Cambridge Scholarship is open to students of any nationality, except for those who have British citizenship or who have studied in the UK for more than 10 months during the year of application. Applicants must have applied for admission to a full-time postgraduate degree (either taught or research) in any subject available at the University of Cambridge. Applicants must also demonstrate outstanding intellectual ability, reasons for choice of course, a commitment to improving the lives of others, and leadership potential.
The Gates Cambridge Scholarship is hosted by the UK, which is one of the most popular and attractive destinations for international students. The UK offers a world-class education system, a rich and diverse culture, and a vibrant and cosmopolitan society. The UK is also home to some of the most renowned universities and research institutions in the world, as well as a wide range of academic disciplines and programs.
The Gates Cambridge Scholarship covers the full cost of studying at Cambridge, including:
- the University Composition Fee at the appropriate rate
- a maintenance allowance for a single student (£20,000 for 12 months at the 2023-24 rate; pro rata for courses shorter than 12 months) – for PhD scholars the award is for up to 4 years
- one economy single airfare at both the beginning and end of the course
- inbound visa costs & the cost of the Immigration Health Surcharge
The scholarship also provides additional, discretionary funding, such as:
- academic development funding – from up to £500 to up to £2,000, dependent on the length of your course, to attend conferences and courses
- dependent children allowance – up to £11,604 for one child and up to £16,548 for two or more children (2023-24 rate)
- family allowance – up to £10,120 for a first child and up to £4,320 for a second child (2023-24 rate); no funding is provided for a partner
Level and Field of Study
The Gates Cambridge Scholarship is available for postgraduate level studies (either master’s or PhD) in any field of study, as long as the chosen program is offered by the University of Cambridge and is related to the mission and vision of the Gates Cambridge Trust. The scholarship supports students for the full duration of their degree, which varies depending on the program and the mode of study.
How to Apply
The application process for the Gates Cambridge Scholarship consists of two stages: an online application and an interview. The online application requires the submission of the following documents:
- a completed and signed application form
- a curriculum vitae
- a transcript
- a statement of purpose
- a research proposal (if applicable)
- two reference letters
- a certificate of proficiency in English (if applicable)
The interview is conducted by a panel of Gates Cambridge Trustees and Alumni, who assess the applicant’s suitability for the scholarship based on the selection criteria. The interview can be done either in person or via videoconference, depending on the availability and location of the applicant.
Countries that can Apply
The Gates Cambridge Scholarship is open to students of any nationality, except for those who have British citizenship or who have studied in the UK for more than 10 months during the year of application.
To be eligible for the Gates Cambridge Scholarship, the applicants must meet the following criteria:
- They must have applied for admission to a full-time postgraduate degree (either taught or research) in any subject available at the University of Cambridge.
- They must have a bachelor’s degree or equivalent from a recognised institution, with a minimum of a first-class or high second-class honours, or a GPA of at least 3.7 out of 4.0, or equivalent.
- They must demonstrate outstanding intellectual ability, reasons for choice of course, a commitment to improving the lives of others, and leadership potential.
- They must not have British citizenship or have studied in the UK for more than 10 months during the year of application.
The Gates Cambridge Scholarship has two application deadlines, depending on the nationality and location of the applicant:
- For US citizens who are residents in the USA, the deadline is 11 October 2023 (Time noon, noon in local US time zone).
- For all other eligible applicants, the deadline is either 5 December 2023 or 4 January 2024, depending on the course to which they are applying (see Course Directory).