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UK's Foreign Office and Essex agree new Chevening Pathway for Pakistani scholars

  • Date

    Tue 13 Jun 23

The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) and the University of Essex have signed an agreement to provide a new Chevening scholarship pathway for prospective Pakistani scholars.

From 8 August 2023, those wishing to undertake a one-year masters degree in the select fields of Climate Change/Sustainability or Heritage/Museum Studies in the UK will now be able to apply through a bespoke programme with the University of Essex, via the Chevening website.

Both of the available fields, Climate Change/Sustainability and Heritage/Museum studies, are highly relevant to Pakistan given last year’s devastating floods, linked to climate change, which left 10% of the country submerged, affecting 33 million people. The floods also adversely affected the country’s rich cultural heritage, with damage inflicted on the UNESCO heritage site of Moenjodaro, the Amri site museum and the Sehwan folk and craft museum amongst others. As the UK supports Pakistan in its flood reconstruction efforts, this new scholarship pathway will offer long term capacity building support.

British Council team celebrate online MOU signing)
British Council team celebrate online MOU signing

At the online signing ceremony, Development Director at the British High Commission Islamabad, Jo Moir, said: “Congratulations to the Chevening Scholarships programme and the University of Essex for signing the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). This partnership is a unique opportunity for mid-career professionals working on Climate Change and Sustainability, and Heritage and Museum Studies, to pursue their master’s degrees at Essex University. Chevening represents the very best of the UK-Pakistan partnership. It is a transformative experience, not just for the individual, but also for Pakistan, as scholars return and use the benefit of their UK experience to make a positive difference in their chosen field.”

The MOU builds on the success of our Vice-Chancellor Professor Anthony Forster's hugely successful visit to Pakistan in spring 2023 which included our first graduation event in the country plus visits to key partners including senior representatives of the British Council and the Chevening Pakistan team. This latest announcement has already received extensive coverage in the media in Pakistan - including by the Pakistan Observer, The Nation and Islamabad Post.

Professor David O’Mahony, Dean for Partnerships at the University of Essex, said: “The University of Essex has a long history of welcoming talented students from Pakistan to study, research, and grow within the vibrant international community at our University. We also have a long and proud tradition of welcoming talented students from around the world through the Chevening Scholarship scheme, and therefore the University of Essex is delighted to be the first UK University to offer Chevening Partnership Scholarships for Pakistan.

"To coincide with the signing of the Chevening-Essex MOU, we are inviting applications for postgraduate Masters scholarships covering one of two fields: Heritage & Museums Studies or Climate Change/Sustainability.

"We have an international reputation in these areas and have just been ranked 56th in the world in the Times Higher Education Global Impact Rankings which highlight the leading universities for promoting the UN Sustainability Development Goals.”

More about the Chevening 

  • Chevening is the UK Government’s scholarship programme. Since 1983, around 2,000 Pakistani scholars have been awarded the Chevening Scholarship. The online application window will open on 8 August 2023, to receive applications for the next academic year 2024-25. To apply and for more information please visit the website at: www.chevening.org.
  • The Chevening budget is supplemented each year by around £6.3m in funding from 120 partner organisations, ranging from private companies, NGOs, foreign government departments, and UK universities. 
  • Partners fully or partially cover the funding for scholars on courses and from countries of interest to them, increasing the number of awards Chevening can offer. In 2022-23, 22% of the scholar cohort is supported by a partner. 
  • This year, Chevening is celebrating its 40th anniversary - 40 years of rewarding excellence and 40 years of championing education.
  • The British High Commission supports inclusion, education, and opportunity for all. Over the years, BHC has made efforts to encourage more women to apply, as a result of which female scholars have risen from just 6% in 2013 to around 60% last year. Anyone who has the ambition, curiosity, a clear vision for the future and the ability to achieve goals should apply for a Chevening Scholarship. Selected scholars will join a community of over 56,000 alumni worldwide.
  • The UK has been a leading partner in response to Pakistan’s devastating floods. The UK Government provided £39m in immediate support, and through implementing partners assisted over 1 million people. Whilst the UK’s Disasters Emergency Committee raised over £40m in generous donations from the UK public, to support NGOs working in Pakistan’s flood affected areas (the UK Government contributed £5m of UK Aid Match funding).
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