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Launch of Global Rhodes Scholarships

Today, the Rhodes Trust announces two new Global Rhodes Scholarships, marking a historic moment for the Trust, as candidates from anywhere in the world will be able to apply to the Scholarships for the first time in the programme’s 115 year history. The addition of these Scholarships also means that there are now over 100 Rhodes Scholarships awarded annually.The Global Scholarships will be available to candidates from any country that is not an existing Rhodes jurisdiction. Applications open in early summer 2018. Potential candidates should go to www.rhodeshouse.ox.ac.uk/apply and will need to seek nomination from their university.  The selection process will conclude by the end of 2018 and the new Scholars will arrive in Oxford in October 2019.

The Rhodes Trust – the preeminent international scholarship programme established at the University of Oxford in 1903 – selects creative young leaders with a commitment to serving others and standing up for the world. In the century since the establishment of the Rhodes Scholarships, the Trust has convened a network of extraordinary people who share a history of enriching their communities and of applying the knowledge and experience acquired as Scholars to the betterment of society. Rhodes Scholars have been Presidents, Nobel Laureates and Olympians. Many are also well known advocates for expanded social justice, and have advanced the frontiers of science and medicine, such as Chrystia Freeland (Canada’s Minister of Foreign Affairs), Eric Lander (pioneer of the human genome) and Kumi Naidoo (Secretary General of Amnesty International). Opening up the Scholarship programme to powerful minds from all around the world demonstrates the Rhodes Trust’s commitment to be a truly global organisation that reflects the world’s diversity.

The two new Global Scholarships are part of a wider geographic expansion of the Rhodes Scholarships. In recent years, the total number of Scholarships awarded each year has increased from 83 to over 100, including new Scholarships in China, East and West Africa, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Malaysia, Palestine, Singapore, Syria and the United Arab Emirates. This increases the number of Rhodes Scholars studying at the University of Oxford at any one time to more than 250. The expansion to include the two new Global Scholarships (with this number set to increase in future years) marks a historic moment for the Rhodes Trust, and further strengthens the reach of the Scholarship around the world.

The Global Scholarships also mean that for the first time British undergraduates would be eligible to apply. Charles Conn, CEO of the Rhodes Trust, commented: “Today’s announcement demonstrates the Rhodes Trust’s significant commitment towards including voices from all around the world in our diverse and vibrant community. As an organisation based in Oxford, we are very excited to be able to now offer the opportunity to British students to join the Rhodes community for the first time since the Scholarship programme was launched in 1903. Students from regions such as Latin America and elsewhere who did not previously have access to a route to a Rhodes Scholarship can now also join our international network.”

Sir John Hood KNZM, Chairman of the Rhodes Trust, said: “Without different viewpoints and ideas, we will not answer the world’s most complex questions. We are proud that we are able to announce a truly global offer to today’s courageous young leaders all around the world. I am extremely thankful to our supportive donors, who have enabled our expansion and helped us achieve this goal.”   

Professor Louise Richardson, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Oxford, said: “The Rhodes Trust has played a central role in bringing exceptional students to Oxford for over a century. Today is a landmark moment for the expansion of the Rhodes Trust’s international community and I look forward to welcoming the new Scholars to our University.”

The Rhodes Scholarships are postgraduate awards supporting exceptional students from around the world to study at the University of Oxford, United Kingdom. It is the oldest and the most prestigious international scholarship programme in the world, which aims to nurture public-spirited leaders for the world’s future.