Rhodes Southern Africa Scholarships Programme 2025 for Postgraduate study at the University of Oxford, UK

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Application Deadline: 23:59, SAST, 1 August 2024

Applications are now open for the 2025 Rhodes Southern Africa Scholarships Programme. The Rhodes Scholarship is a fully funded, full time, postgraduate award which enables talented young people from around the world to study at the University of Oxford. Rhodes Scholars come to the UK for two or more years and can apply to study most full-time postgraduate courses offered by Oxford University.

Scholarships in Southern Africa are distributed as follows:

a. South Africa-at-Large Scholarships: You should apply to the Regional Selection Committee in whose area you permanently live or in which you have received, or are currently receiving, any considerable part of your education. All successful candidates from Regional Selection Committees (except for KwaZulu-Natal as explained below), are sent to the South Africa-atLarge Selection Committee, for the final round of interviews. The South Africa-at-Large Selection Committee may select eight Rhodes Scholars.

There are four regional Selection Committees, namely:
i. Eastern Cape and Free State;
ii. KwaZulu-Natal;
iii. Gauteng, Limpopo, Mpumalanga and North-West; and iv. Western Cape and Northern Cape

b. KwaZulu-Natal Scholarship:

You may apply for the KwaZulu-Natal Scholarship if you live permanently or have received, or are receiving, a considerable part of your education in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN). The KZN Selection Committee may select one successful candidate each year, and can also send candidates to the South Africa-at-Large Selection Committee.

c. Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Namibia and eSwatini (formerly Swaziland) Scholarship (BLMNS): You may apply to the BLMNS Selection Committee if you fulfil the citizenship or legal residence requirement in one of the mentioned countries. The BLMNS Selection Committee may select one candidate each year.

Eligibility Criteria

• Nationality/citizenship: You must be a citizen or legal permanent resident of South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Namibia or eSwatini. Applications from refugees/asylum seekers in South Africa will also be considered in this constituency. • Residency: You must have been resident in South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Namibia or eSwatini for at least five of the last ten years.

• Age: (i) Upon entry to Oxford on 01 October 2025, you must be at least 19 years old and not have passed your 25th birthday (which means you must have been born after 01 October 2000 and on or before 01 October 2006).

(ii) For older candidates who will have passed their 25th birthday on 01 October 2025, and completed their first undergraduate degree later than usual: • Candidates must have completed their first undergraduate degree within the last 2 years, i.e. after 1 October 2023*; and • may not have passed their 28th birthday on 01 October 2025 (which means they must have been born after 01 October 1997).

(iii) For candidates who are MBBCh or an MBChB graduates, and required to complete their compulsory internship and/or community service: • Candidates may not have passed their 28th birthday on 01 October 2025 (which means they must have been born after 01 October 1997). • Candidates should apply either during their second year of internship, or during their community service year, provided that they meet the age requirement above.

• Candidates that can apply in their community service year (without breaching the age requirement in above) are encouraged to do so. NOTE: For candidates that have to or choose to apply in their second year of internship, the Rhodes Scholarship National Secretariat will endeavour, as it has done in past years, to reach agreement with the National Department of Health to allow those medical doctors awarded the Rhodes Scholarship to complete their community service year requirement by September, in the year after they apply, and before going to Oxford in October 2025. While the Secretariat will strive to reach such dispensations, the granting of such cannot be guaranteed.

(iv) Other health sciences graduates in order to complete any compulsory internship and/or community service:

• Candidates who have completed the necessary health sciences degrees for admission to, and intend to be admitted to any registered health profession that requires the completion of any compulsory internship and/or community service, should write to the Rhodes Scholarship National Secretariat to seek exemption to allow them to apply in their internship or community service year, provided that they will not have passed their 28th birthday on 01 October 2025 (which means they must have been born after 01 October 1997), and if:

• they cannot be accommodated under part iii above; and
• they are in a similar position to medical students given that, even if there are no delays or breaks in or between the completion of their compulsory university studies, internship and/or community service, they would not be able to be accommodated either under the general age limit or part ii above.

Scholarship Worth

  • Following selection for the Scholarship, the Rhodes Trust will cover the fee required to apply to study at the University of Oxford. The Trust will cover the fee for a student visa and the associated International Health Surcharge (IHS), which enables international students to access the UK’s National Health Service. The Rhodes Trust will cover two economy class flights – to and from the UK – for the beginning and end of studies in Oxford.
  • On arrival in Oxford, Scholars receive a settling in allowance and for those Scholars who transition to a second course of study in Oxford, they will again receive assistance to cover the fee for visa renewal and further application for IHS.

Academic achievement:

You must have completed an undergraduate degree (usually a Bachelor’s) by July 2025, and you must have an academic background and grade that – at a minimum – meets or exceeds the specific entry requirements of your chosen course at the University of Oxford.Candidates will have a higher chance of successful admission to Oxford if they have:

o A First Class Honours Degree or equivalent, or, o A GPA of 3.70/4.0 or higher, or, o an Honours degree (or have taken an Honours year) from a University outside of your country OR if you have studied to Masters level within your country (with the exception of those studying in South Africa and Namibia, and for some countries, those studying medicine). Candidates may wish to consider applying to the Rhodes Trust’s sister Foundation, The Mandela Rhodes Foundation (https://mandelarhodes.org/), to pursue an Honour’s year or a Master’s degree prior to making an application for the Rhodes Scholarship.

How to Apply

To apply for the Rhodes Scholarship, you must complete and submit our online application form by 23:59 SAST, 01 August 2024.

There is no application fee for submission of the Rhodes Scholarship application form; however you must submit your application online.

The Rhodes Trust cannot accept any other form of application. You should apply for the Rhodes Scholarship before applying for your proposed course at the University of Oxford. Candidates selected for the Rhodes Scholarship are then required to apply for their chosen course via the University of Oxford’s graduate application form with support from the team at Rhodes House. If unsuccessful in your first application to the Rhodes Scholarships, you may subsequently re-apply only once more (and this must be in the same constituency), subject to meeting the eligibility criteria.

The Rhodes application form requires you to provide:

• Your personal details, such as contact information
• Evidence that you meet the eligibility criteria
• Your education history including your full university transcripts (to date)
• The course(s) you would like to study at the University of Oxford
• A CV (a template is provided here which you should download and fill out)
• An Academic Statement
• A Personal Statement
• A total of four referees

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the Rhodes Southern Africa Scholarships Programme

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