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How to successfully apply for a Chevening Scholarship

Chevening Scholarship 2021
Auckland mayor Phil Goff is a part of the prestigious Chevening alumni. Source: Patrick Kovarik/AFP

If you consider yourself a future leader, influencer, and someone who can make decisions under pressured environments, it’s time to consider the prestigious Chevening Scholarship 2021. The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office plus partner organisations fund scholars to pursue a master’s degree in the UK for one year, including flights, tuition fees and accommodation.

Past recipients include Riri Raza (Indonesian film director, producer and screenwriter), Ziad Bahaa-Eldin (Egyptian Deputy Prime Minister), and Phil Goff (New Zealand’s Mayor of Auckland).

As only 2% of applicants are chosen each year, you have to make sure your application for the Chevening Scholarship 2021 is tip top. Here are five must-know facts before you click send:

Courses available for Chevening Scholarship 2021

Over 12,000 postgraduate courses at over 150 higher education institutions are available for the Chevening Scholarship 2021 programme. Your application must list at least three master’s programmes you would like to join. You don’t need to have an admission letter from the unis you’ve chosen at this point.

Work experience

You must have two years of work experience. Part-time, voluntary and freelance work are counted, as are internships.

You can also submit up to 10 different employment periods to meet this requirement. In total, your work experience should sum up to 2,800 hours.

Chevening

Chevening Scholarship recipients study at world-renowned universities. Source: Fadel Senna/AFP

Essays

You need to submit four  500-words essays. The first should showcase your international networking and personal relations skills, such as how you’ve dealt with situations in different cultures, age groups and socioeconomic classes. 

In the second essay, you need to demonstrate your leadership qualities through projects that brought positive change in your community. The third essay is where you outline future career plans. The fourth and last essay is why you want to study in the UK.

Reference letters

You’ll need two letters of reference: one from a professional or an academic and one verified from the British Council once you’re shortlisted. 

Interview advice

When you get selected for an interview, you can book a time slot. We suggest a morning slot as the panel of judges tend to be harsher when they’ve gone through many interviews and are tired (they’re interviewing five to six people a day for 15 days). 

You’ll then be invited to attend the interview in your city or town where the British embassy or high commission has an office or centre. Here, you have one hour to convince the panel that you’re worthy of a Chevening Scholarship. 

This is why it’s a good idea to memorise your essays so you can clarify anything they ask you about on the spot. It’s also recommended to go through your passion and goals on how you plan to make an impact. To read more advice from Chevening alumni, click here.