Funding Boost For Cross Commonwealth Scholarship Fund

£5 million UK contribution to Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholarship fund

Damian Hinds

Damian Hinds

More young people will have the chance to benefit from life-changing scholarships allowing them to study at universities across the Commonwealth, thanks to a £5 million boost from the Department for Education.

The Education Secretary has announced the additional investment ahead of an event aimed at helping improve the quality of girls’ education across the Commonwealth.

Commonwealth Foreign Secretaries will attend the launch of the Girls’ Education Campaign to encourage a step-change in the quality of girls’ education globally, as part of this week’s Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in London and Windsor. It is the largest summit of its kind in UK history and a truly global event with young people at its centre.

This investment follows the Education Secretary’s appearance at the Youth Forum earlier this week where HRH Prince Harry, in his first speech as Commonwealth Youth Ambassador, announced the £13.4 million fund was being renamed the “Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholarships” in honour of HM The Queen.

Education Secretary Damian Hinds said:

For young people across the Commonwealth, sharing in this partnership presents a unique opportunity to learn about other cultures. It also gives us the chance to share learning from our respective education systems and to draw inspiration from across the globe, so that every child gets the education they deserve.

This investment builds on this celebrated relationship by offering even more young people around the world the opportunity to further their education at a Commonwealth university abroad.

Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholarships will provide life-changing experiences for young leaders with the energy and talent to make a difference in their home countries and beyond. The scheme, which is managed by the Association of Commonwealth Universities (ACU), will offer study opportunities not previously available and widen collaboration across the Commonwealth.

The UK’s £5 million contribution to the fund, which will increase the total to £13.4 million, will mean that an additional 150 students can benefit from a Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholarship by 2025. While the fund is open to recipients from all Commonwealth countries, the new £5 million contribution announced today will be targeted at students from countries that are eligible for overseas development assistance (ODA) and who are looking to further their studies at leading universities in low and middle income countries.

The first Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholars will begin their studies in 2019, coinciding with the 70th anniversary of the Commonwealth and the 60th anniversary of the Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship Plan.

Dr Joanna Newman, Chief Executive and Secretary General of the Association of Commonwealth Universities said:

Scholarships have a transformational impact on the lives of individuals and also, more importantly, on their wider communities and societies, thanks to the skills and knowledge gained. I am delighted that the ACU will play a vital role in securing these educational opportunities for young people across all member countries.