Kerala-based IAS couple Dr. K Vasuki and Dr. S Karthikeyan would soon be flying to the United Kingdom to pursue Masters Programs at the University of Reading. Vasuki and Karthikeyan have won the prestigious Chevening Scholarships, the UK government’s global scholarship programme for overseas students.
Vasuki has opted for MSc Psychological Conservation while Karthikeyan would be studying MSc Food Science. It is indeed a rare feat that two people from the same family have won the Chevening Scholarships which is quite difficult to achieve.
Besides Vasuki and Karthikeyan, Arya Murali, a native of Kalpathi in Palakkad and Rajaneesh Rajan who hails from Kottarakkara in Kollam district, too have won the scholarship this year from Kerala.
Who all can apply
Chevening Scholarship allow international students who are graduates and have a work experience of at least two years to pursue Master’s degree in the UK, totally free of cost. The scholarship covers the course fee, daily expenses, air fares and visa charges too.
The scholarships are awarded for one year Master’s programmes. Scholarships aren’t available for M Phil, Phd, part-time or distance education or short-term courses that would be completed in less than 9 months and for courses that lasts for more than 12 months.
The scholarship amount would vary depending upon the courses that each candidate has chosen.
Selected students might even get chance to study at the prestigious Universities of Oxford and Cambridge.
You could also select three courses as possible options. Similar courses offered by the same university or at different universities could be selected. However, the candidate should explain why they have chosen these courses. Moreover, they have to submit a long-term plan about their course of action when they return to India after completing the course.
After evaluating these, the short list for the interview would be published by February next year. Documents that prove your educational qualifications and two reference letters have to be submitted after the interview list has been published.
The interview would be held on 28 and 29 February at the British Embassy or High Commission offices.
The final result would be published in the beginning of July 2022.
The admission documents to one of the first three courses should be presented at the university within 14 July. The candidate would be eligible for the scholarship only if he/she gets admitted within this time frame.
Tough to get
Scholarships are awarded to only 2% of about 65,000 applicants from around the globe. It means that landing a Chevening Scholarship is definitely not child’s play.
“Around a year could be dedicated for preparation alone. I had practised by making my teachers evaluate my essays at least 13 times. The admission procedures too should be completed swiftly alongside the application. In the interview, our honesty and commitment would be evaluated," Rajaneesh Rajan said.
“Your social commitment would be evaluated. Essay questions are really important. The questions in the interview round would depend on how you have written the essays,” Arya Murali.
Arya, who is the former vice president of Women in Technology International, has won a scholarship worth Rs 50 lakh to do a Master’s program in Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship at the London School of Economics. The course fee alone would come up to Rs 32 lakh. She would receive Rs 1.4 lakh per month for other expenses. Besides, the candidates would get 60,000 euros as arrival allowance when they land in the UK.
A work experience of at least two years (equivalent to 2800 hours) is mandatory for the applicants. However, it is not necessary that one has to work for two years continuously. Jobs that you have done before graduation, while doing graduation or after completing the course would be considered. You could include the details of up to 15 types of jobs including full time, part time, social service or even internships, in your applications.
Moreover, the candidates have to return to their home countries and stay/work there for at least 2 years, after completing the course.
Leadership too counts
“Leadership qualities are very important. You should give details of what you have done as a leader until now. If you have been the captain of your school/college basketball team, you could even mention that. Professionals could share their experience of managing teams,” Dr. Vasuki and Dr. Karthikeyan.
Questions to expect
The essay questions that need to be answered in not more than 500 words are really important. As the Chevening Scholarship aims to mould future leaders, instances that prove your leadership qualities could be mentioned in the answers.
When to apply
The applications for next year could be submitted until 2 November. The application procedure takes at least a year to complete.
For more information vist the website – www.chevening.org.