Here's all you need to know about applying for a @cheveningfco scholarship, how to get short listed, what to do to ace your interview and get your Masters from the UK fully sponsored.
How do I know? I am one of the youngest @cheveningfco scholars ever from Nigeria.
1. Chevening (pronounced CHEE-VNING) is the most prestigious scholarship in the UK. It is for people who combine academic excellence with leadership experience and potential. If you're book smart but not a visionary leader, the scholarship is not for you.
2. These are the most important things to note about the scholarship:
- Min of 2:1 in first degree
- Min of 2 years work experience (internships, NYSC, volunteer work COUNT)
- For ANY uni in the UK (England, Scotland, Northern Ireland & Wales)
- For any 1 yr Masters program
3. You will also need to meet the English requirements (IELTS, etc) except your first degree is from one of the countries that is exempt. You also MUST come back to Nigeria for 2 years min. MUST.
MUST. This is not a runaway route.
So let's get into the application, shall we?
4. How to choose a school to study in.
Chevening will ask for your top three options. It you already have admissions, simply put those on the list. If you don't have admission, apply to your favorite school. ANY SCHOOL IN THE UK! Consider academics, culture, prestige, etc.
5. If you get the scholarship, you get the following:
- Tuition paid to the school
- Monthly stipend (for rent, food, living)
- Round trip flights
- Dissertation allowance
- Travel allowance for mandatory London event
- One of the best networks ever!
6. You win or lose based on your essays.
Chevening will ask you to write short essays that show the following:
- Your leadership experience
- Your plans for when you return home
- Times you've made big decisions / solved challenges
This is the time to stand out!
7. Tie your essays to the priority areas of the UK govt. I won't tell you what these are but the UK has a range of priority areas. Pretty much anything can be tied to a priority area, as long as it is work that is making a social, environmental or economic impact.
8. The scholarship is also fair and completely merit-based. Please, if you live with a disability or you are a woman, apply. From my personal experience, we need more diversity. But not enough women and people living with disabilities apply. ALL fields are welcome too.
9. Here's a screenshot of one of my essays. Don't ask me to share my essays with you, I won't do that. Write your own, but get some inspiration from here. Note...this essay is 6 years old. If you copy and paste, you won't get in.
10. Be honest, be clear, capture the reader's attention, present yourself as an asset to Nigeria and the UK, wow the interviewers, don't be shy.
Talk about your work and your plans. Don't edit yourself.
This is not your family house, brag with numbers! Facts. Figures.
11. Once you get shortlisted, you have only one job...
wow the interviewers.
I can't count how many people come into the interview only to see that someone else actually wrote their essays. Your packaging can't work at the interview stage.
Here's how to wow the interviewers:
12. You should be able to answer questions on why you chose the UK, why you chose your specific programs and why you're a good fit for the scholarship.
Also, you should be able to defend your essays. Talk about your leadership experience, your work, your plans upon return.
13. Be confident. If you are nervous, tell the panel. They'll help you calm down. Ask for water if you need it. Ask questions when they give you room too. Talk about why you stand out. Now is the time to brag. Everyone at this stage has a good essay. So stand out.
14. Most importantly, why should the UK care about your work? Is it an area they have a as a priority? Can you talk about some of the work they are doing in Nigeria? Present yourself as informed! Know what you wrote in your essay. Talk about the culture of the UK too.
15. Highlight the academic aspects. Have you been in touch with a supervisor? Say it. Is the school the only school with a nobel prize winner in your field? Say it. Be informed. If two schools offer the exact same course but you chose the one closer to ManUtd stadium, say it!
16. Here's my thread from last year. You can also look through this...
17. Here are FAQs.
18. Here is the website to apply for a Chevening scholarship. I wish you the best of the best.
Start early. Don't wait for the last minute. All the best!
You can follow @funmioyatogun.
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