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Desmond Tutu Scholarship 2017-18

King’s College London is very pleased to announce the establishment of this new award, as part of the King's Scholars schemes for 2017 entry.

King’s College London is dedicated to the advancement of knowledge, learning and understanding in the service of society. We look for students who are pursuing higher learning so that they can play a part in making the world a better place.

What is the Desmond Tutu Scholarship?

There will be a total of 18 scholarships available to all students starting undergraduate study at King’s College London in September 2017. 

Each scholarship will be paid as a cash bursary of £1,000 and scholars will be invited to a number of events throughout the year including a  welcome dinner for all Desmond Tutu scholars hosted by the VP Education.  

Students wishing to apply for the scholarship need to have received an offer to study at King’s and must submit an essay and application to the Student Funding Office by 17:00 GMT Friday 31 March 2017.

How much is the Desmond Tutu Scholarship?

There are a total of 18 scholarships available, each worth £1,000.

The scholarship is payable in year one of your course of study and will be paid to as a single cash bursary in October 2017.

Am I eligible for the Desmond Tutu Scholarship?

All undergraduate degree students starting at King’s in 2017, who do not already have a previous degree from a UK, EU or international institution, are eligible to apply, though the following selection criteria will be applied to each applicant:

In order to be eligible* to apply for the Desmond Tutu Scholarship, students must:

  • must be undertaking a first degree;
  • not hold a first degree from a UK, EU or other international institution;
  • not be NHS-funded in their first year of study;
  • will only be considered if you are subsequently confirmed as holding an offer from King’s; 
  • submit an essay, not to exceed 1,000 words, titled: “How do you think an education at King's College London would help you to serve  society once you graduate?”
  • submit a copy of your curriculum vitae (CV) which demonstrates existing work in service to society.

* Please note that being eligible does not mean an automatic entitlement to a scholarship, as final selection by committee is based upon your essay and CV submission.

How is the essay evaluated?

The word limit is 1,000 words. 

The essay title is: How do you think an education at King's College London would help you to serve society once you graduate?

The criteria for evaluation of the essay:

  • the academic merit of the assignment – a clear and fluent style with a well focused and structured argument;
  • an understanding and exposition of how skills learnt at the College will be able to translate into action to serve society.

Applicants will also be required to provide a Curriculum Vitae (CV) which demonstrates your existing work in service to society.

The selection panel will consist of a group of key academics from across King’s College London. The selection of candidates is a matter of academic judgement. All decisions of the panel are final.

How do I apply for a Desmond Tutu Scholarship?

The application form can be downloaded here.

The deadline for applications is 5pm on Friday 31 March 2017

When will I know the outcome of my application?

Successful applicants will be notified if they are successful by 1 May 2017. Please note that only successful applicants will be contacted.

Applications for scholarships are welcome from applicants for programmes but only applicants who hold an offer at King's by 31 March 2017 will be considered for scholarships. Terms & Conditions of the scholarship

  • The offer of a scholarship is provisional upon the offer holder selecting a King’s College London programme as his/her firm UCAS choice and his/her place at King’s is confirmed upon receipt of A level (or equivalent) results.  Please note that offer holders must have met fully all the conditions of the offer exactly (e.g. no dropped grades);
  • Applicants who have been selected for the scholarship will be informed by the end of April 2017;
  • Students who interrupt or suspend studies will not be eligible for the scholarship for that year;
  • Students may ask permission to defer entry for one year only after which time the offer of a scholarship will be withdrawn;
  • Those students who interrupt their studies or forfeit their scholarship would not be required to repay any or part of the scholarship;
  • This scholarship cannot be held along with any other King’s strictly merit based funding but can be held with King’s means tested schemes and other external scholarship schemes;
  • The award is a one off payment so this payment will be made once, during October 2017, and subject to enrolment being completed;
  • Students will sign a waiver allowing the use of their image in promotional materials and each student will be required to write a student profile and three blog entries in their first year of study.

Where can I get further information?

To find out more about the Scholarship scheme, please contact the Student Funding Office.


The College has tried to give students an early opportunity to begin their research of student funding. Although every effort has been made to ensure that information provided is both helpful to prospective candidates and accurate at the time of its publication, it is possible that some information may be outdated or superseded before the start of the 2017-18 academic year.

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