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UK-Funded Chevening Scholarships Opening Doors for Women

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Thursday, March 25th, 2021
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International Women’s Day was observed on March 8 under the theme “Choose to Challenge”. That theme resonates well with the UK government’s ambition to champion gender equality across the world. We are primarily doing so by equipping girls with the great equaliser that is education. We believe that educated women can and will challenge their communities to be better.

On International Women’s Day itself, we hosted a group of exceptional Ethiopian women who won and successfully completed our Chevening scholarship programme. Over lunch, we discussed ways to encourage more women to apply for the scholarship and benefit from the UK’s world-class universities.

At the moment, we are interviewing candidates for our 2021 scholarship intake. At the end of this process, we’ll offer the very best candidates full funding for a Masters course. We are looking for future leaders, influencers, and decision-makers from all over the world who will benefit academically and career-wise from a British degree.

Chevening equipped the women we met over lunch with knowledge and skills that empower and open doors for them. Iman says the scholarship allows young people like herself to get quality education from world-class universities.

Since we started it in 1983, the Chevening programme has created opportunities for over 50,000 people to study in the UK. As well as offering a post-graduate degree to set people off on the path to greatness, the scholarship has allowed students to network, experience UK culture, and build relationships with the UK that we hope will last a lifetime!

“Chevening has high significance in creating lifetime opportunities for women not just by providing them with higher levels of education, but also by connecting them with leaders and influencers around the world,” says Mahlet Abreham, another Chevener who studied International Human Rights Law at University of Sussex. “Chevening allows me to join the vast club of alumni with more than 50,000 members where I can network with the most influential scholars from across the globe.”

Studying in the UK gives a taste of the diverse cultures that come to the UK from across the globe. “You will find yourself in an incredible mix of international cultures so you will not feel out of space, but it feels like home away from home,” adds Iman.

Mahlet also has a similar observation. She says, “The UK is a multicultural and the most diverse place to live in, where you can see the influence of many cultures reflected everywhere: from the food you can buy to the architecture all around you.”

For Feben, Chevening is not just a scholarship but an experience. “Being a Chevener gives you the opportunity to meet and be friends with Chevenres from different backgrounds,” she says. “These networks are the ones I intend to use professionally if I need connections and knowledge about a region, theme, or even a different perspective.”

So, in the weeks and months that follow International Women’s Day, we’ll be thinking about the theme, “Choose to Challenge”. It clear to us that girls’ education is the best tool we have for end gender disparity – everywhere.”

At the start of last year, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that girls’ education is one of his top priorities. And he backed the announcement by appointing Helen Grant as the UK’s Special Envoy on Girls’ Education to lead efforts to get 40 million more girls into school around the world by 2025.

Our PM said, “It is my fervent belief that educating girls is the simplest and most transformative thing we can do to lift communities out of poverty, end the scourge of gender-based violence and build back better from the [COVID-19] pandemic. It can change the fortunes of not just individual women and girls, but communities and nations.”

Empowering women and girls through education will also be a key focus for our G7 presidency this year – so you should expect more from the UK on this incredibly important issue.

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