West Africa includes Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, the island of Saint Helena, Senegal, Sierra Leone, São Tomé and Principe and Togo.
There is one Rhodes Scholarship for West Africa each year. The Scholarship for West Africa was announced in 2017 and the first Scholar will arrive in October 2018. There had previously been Scholarships for certain countries within this grouping, including Nigeria and Ghana.
The Rhodes Scholarship programme is the oldest (established 1903), and perhaps the most prestigious, international scholarship programme in the world. Administered by the Rhodes Trust in Oxford, the programme offers more than 100 fully-funded Scholarships each year for postgraduate study at the University of Oxford in the UK- one of the world’s leading universities.
Selection Committees for the Scholarships are looking for young leaders of outstanding intellect and character who are motivated to engage with global challenges, committed to the service of others and show promise of becoming value-driven, principled leaders for the world’s future. The Selection Committees are looking for the following:
- academic excellence (e.g. First Class Honours or GPA of minimum 3.7/4.0, or equivalent).
- energy to use your talents to the full (as demonstrated by mastery in areas such as sports, music, debate, dance, theatre, and artistic pursuits, particularly where teamwork is involved)
- truth, courage, devotion to duty, sympathy for and protection of the weak, kindliness, unselfishness and fellowship
- moral force of character and instincts to lead, and to take an interest in your fellow human beings
Rhodes Scholarships Eligibility Criteria
a. Nationality/citizenship: You must be a citizen of one of the following countries: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, the island of Saint Helena, Senegal, Sierra Leone, São Tomé and Principe and Togo.
b. Education/residency: You must have been resident in one or more of the countries listed above for at least five of the last ten years.
c. Age: Upon 1 October 2020, you must meet either of the below criteria:
i. You must be at least 18 and have not reached your 25th birthday (i.e. you must have been born after 1 October 1995 and on or before 1 October 2002).
OR for older candidates who completed their first undergraduate degree later than usual
ii. You must have not reached your 27th birthday (i.e. have been born after 1 October 1993) AND you have met or will meet the requirements for completion of your first degree on or after 1 October 2019*.
OR for medical, dental, and pharmaceutical students, to allow you to complete your internship
iii. You must be at least 18 and have not reached your 26th birthday (i.e. you must have been born after 1 October 1994 and on or before 1 October 2002)
* A university’s policy determines the date a degree is considered awarded. In ambiguous cases, the decision of the National Secretary is final.
d. Academic achievement: You must have completed an undergraduate degree from a college or university (normally a Bachelor’s degree) with the highest classification your University awards, e.g. First Class or Upper Second Class Honours, or a Distinction in the case of Medicine, Dentistry and Pharmacy courses.
e. English language: You must have a sufficiently high standard of English to meet the English language proficiency requirements (at the Higher Level listed) of the University of Oxford.
How to Apply for Rhodes Scholarships
You can apply online from 01 June 2020 at http://www.rhodeshouse.ox.ac.uk via the scholarships tab.
- You must submit your application online, with all supporting documents, by 23:59 Greenwich Mean Time (GMT), 30 September 2020.
- In preparation for making your application, you should read carefully the general information for candidates on the Rhodes website, the Conditions of Tenure for the Rhodes Scholarship, the information in this document and the graduate admissions pages of the University of Oxford: www.ox.ac.uk/admissions/graduate.
- Shortlisted candidates will be invited to a social reception (e.g. a lunch or dinner reception) and an interview. No candidate will be selected without interview. You must be available to attend the interview and social reception,in person, as no accommodations can be made on date and time of these events. Interviews will be held in Lagos, on a Saturday between mid- November and early December, with a Dinner with the Selection Committee on the preceding evening. Overnight accommodation will be provided if necessary. Travel expenses are not normally provided. However, candidates who need to travel to the interview location from their country of origin within the West Africa region, may apply to the National Secretary for financial assistance to travel.
- All applicants will be emailed with the outcome of their application.
Application Deadline: 23:59 GMT, 30 September 2020