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Bursaries, Hardship Grants, and Scholarships


“The bursary made Cambridge a realistic option for me. It has been essential for funding my basic costs of living and has enabled me to work and enjoy university without worrying about how I will be able to fund my time here.” 

Ben Wood, (2014, Natural Sciences)


Bursaries- Bursaries are usually awarded based on household income, and are a tool designed to make sure that everyone can afford to live and study in Cambridge regardless of their financial background. This type of funding has also been shown to alleviate hardship funds, as supporting students who may be more likely to require hardship funding up front means that, not only are they able to concentrate on their course without the financial worry- and do better for it, but they are less likely to need emergency funding that can be unpredictable and unplanned for College.   

Hardship Funding- Hardship funding is the trickiest need to predict, as anyone can suffer from a change in circumstance throughout their time at University. Sometimes hardship funds can cover the most basic costs that might not otherwise be able to be afforded, such as a train ticket home if something happens. By supporting students in other ways, such as with bursaries for low income students, hardship funds can be flexible and available when and where they are most needed. 

Scholarships- In recent years scholarships have been set up with a postgraduate focus as there is a general lack of funding for postgraduate research in the UK. College based scholarships, particularly for MPhil study, can also be a good tool in encouraging exceptional undergraduate students in College to pursue further study. Scholarships are generally awarded based on merit regardless of financial situation.     

Legacies provide crucial support for bursary provision at Selwyn. The recent Elgar legacy, for example, offers essential support to undergraduates and postgraduates and built on a philanthropic tradition which has been consistent since the college's foundation. Legacies of all sizes will make a difference to generations of students and if you might be interest in supporting bursaries, hardship funding or scholarships in your Will please contact the Major Gifts and Legacies Manager.

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