UofG partners with the Cowrie Scholarship Foundation to improve access to higher education for disadvantaged Black British students

Published: 19 January 2021

UofG joins a foundation which wants to fund 100 Black British students through UK universities in the next decade.

The University of Glasgow is partnering with the Cowrie Scholarship Foundation (CSF), to provide scholarships for disadvantaged Black British students.

The Foundation wants to fund 100 Black British students through UK universities in the next decade.

From September 2021, Glasgow now joins nine other partner universities who will each cover the tuition fees for at least three students over the next decade, with the Foundation covering maintenance and living costs through business and individual donors.

Rachel Sandison, Vice-Principal, External Relations at the University of Glasgow, said: “The University of Glasgow is delighted to partner with the Cowrie Scholarship Foundation to offer new scholarships that will provide access to higher education for disadvantaged Black students within the UK.

“The University leads a comprehensive and ambitious widening participation agenda, where we are committed to raising aspirations and supporting access to one of the world’s top universities. Our partnership with the Cowrie Scholarship Foundation will provide not just the financial means for students to undertake undergraduate study but will also provide an important support network and mentorship to students to help enable successful degree outcomes.

“Importantly, participation in this new scholarship scheme further delivers our commitments to equality and inclusion, building on the successful James McCune Smith Scholarships launched in 2019 as part of our reparative justice programme.”

The initial target for the Foundation is to raise £500,000 to start funding the first tranche of students and then continue to raise funds, eventually forming an ecosystem, and then to finance scholarships through endowments.

Professor Richard Oreffo, Professor of Musculoskeletal Science at the University of Southampton and Founder of the Foundation, a registered charity said: “Access to university should not be limited by race or social class, but unfortunately this is not the case for all in our society.

“While many issues are at play, the Cowrie Scholarship Foundation seeks to address a significant barrier: the financial cost of university education.

“We are absolutely delighted to partner with the University of Glasgow – together we will equip the next generation of young Black individuals with the education to make a difference in their lives, our lives and the world.”

The issues around the participation of disadvantaged Black British students in higher education are complex. Progress in widening access and supporting student success must continue from early school years and, as indicated by the recent Russell Group Report Pathways for Potential, the rate of change concerning participation of Black students needs to improve. Issues around progression, application, attainment gap, well-being of disadvantaged students and expectations are also all factors.


For more information contact Áine Allardyce, Communications Manager, External Relations on email on aine.allardyce@glasgow.ac.uk or media@glasgow.ac.uk

The University of Glasgow Cowrie Scholarship

The University of Glasgow expect that the application process for the scholarship will open on 5 April 2021 and close on 30 June 2021. Learn more about the University of Glasgow Cowrie Scholarship on the following web pages.

About the Cowrie Scholarship Foundation

The Cowrie Scholarship Foundation, a registered charity, exists to help eligible students attend a range of leading British universities, regardless of what subject they decide to study.

The Foundation will administer the awards with an established board and strict compliance with standard scholarship guidelines. Applications will be made on-line with set selection criteria. Final selection will be made by an advisory board.

The Cowrie Scholarship Foundation also aims to provide more than just money, and will offer mentorship, role models, and resilience programmes for the students who benefit from scholarships to make the most of the opportunity.

The 10 UK partner universities including the University of Glasgow are all members of the prestigious Russell Group.

For more information and to find out how to donate and support the Foundation visit the links below: 

First published: 19 January 2021

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