Fully-Funded Gates Cambridge Scholarship for International Students in UK 2021

The Gates Cambridge Trust invites applications for the 2021 Gates Cambridge Scholarship for international students who want to pursue a graduate degree at Cambridge University in the UK.

The Gates Cambridge Scholarships are prestigious, highly competitive full-cost financial aid grants awarded to outstanding applicants from countries outside the UK to pursue a full-time postgraduate degree in any subject available at the University of Cambridge.

Worth of Award

A Gates Cambridge Scholarship covers the full cost of studying at Cambridge. It also provides additional, discretionary funding. The Gates Cambridge Scholarship is one of the most generous international scholarships available. It covers the following costs:

Core components

  • the University Composition Fee at the appropriate rate.

  • a maintenance allowance for a single student (£17,848 for 12 months at the 2021-22 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.

Discretionary components

The Trust also considers applications for several types of additional funding on a discretionary basis:

  • Academic development funding – from up to £500 to up to £2,000, dependent on the length of your course, to attend conferences and courses.

  • Family allowance – up to £10,120 for one child and up to £14,440 for two or more children (2021-22 rate). No funding is provided for a partner.

  • Fieldwork – you may apply to keep up to your normal maintenance allowance while on fieldwork as part of your PhD (the Trust does not fund other fieldwork costs as these should be funded by the University Composition Fee).

  • Maternity/Paternity funding – should you require it, you may apply to intermit your studies for up to 6 months and continue to receive your maintenance allowance during this time

  • Hardship funding – for unforeseen difficulties

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You can apply for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship if you are:

  • 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:
  • PhD
  • MSc/MLitt
  • One year postgraduate course
  • Current student at Cambridge? If you are applying for a new postgraduate course you can apply for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship. Current recipients can also apply if they are applying for a new course.
  • However, if you have already started a course you cannot apply for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship to fund the remainder of it.

Selection Criteria

Each Scholar is different and brings something unique to the programme. But the following criteria are highly sought after:

  • Academic excellence
  • Leadership potential
  • A commitment to improving the lives of others
  • A good academic fit with Cambridge

How to Apply

Please read this very carefully.

You may apply for admission to a postgraduate degree, a College place, and various sources of funding (including Gates Cambridge) via the University’s Graduate Applicant Portal.

First, decide what course you want to study at Cambridge and apply to using the online application form. You must submit all supporting documents for admission in order to be considered for both admission and a Gates Scholarship.

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Second, while completing the online form, there is a specific Gates Cambridge section that asks applicants to submit the following:

  • A 3,000 character (500 words) statement about your fit with the Gates Cambridge programme.
  • A (non-academic) reference about their fit with Gates Cambridge. Referees may paste/type up to 4,000 characters into the online reference or upload a separate letter; they are also asked some specific questions about how they rate the applicant for the scholarship.
  • The Gates Cambridge reference is in addition to the two academic references required by the University for admission.
  • An up-to-date CV/resume.
  • You would also be required to upload a copy of relevant transcript(s).

Deadline: Wednesday, October 13, 2021.


Click here for more details and to apply