Did you apply for the Chevening scholarship?
Are you wondering what the next thing could be?
We have gathered as much information we can to help calm your nerves and also inspire you to hope for the best.
We understand that it is that time of the year when all those who applied for the 2023/2024 cohort of the Chevening Scholarship are desperately awaiting their fate. Some keep refreshing their email to see if there is an update from Chevening, while those who do not meet the eligibility criteria for the scholarship will receive rejection emails earlier than other applicants.
The Chevening Scholarship is one of the most prestigious scholarships in the world, with a record of about 50,000 applications every year. This year, about 70,000 people from across the world applied for the scholarship. Only 2 to 3% of these applicants will be accepted, making the Chevening Scholarship one of the most competitive in the world.
Chevening is a leadership program run by the UK government that aims to cultivate global leaders in a variety of fields who can use their skills, knowledge, and connections to positively impact their industries, communities, and countries. The program is funded by the UK Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office (FCDO) and other partner organizations.
Every year, the scholarship application cycle begins on 2nd August and ends on 1st November. The applications are then screened based on the eligibility criteria in an effort to eliminate those deemed ineligible.
What are the eligibility criteria for the Chevening Scholarship?
To be considered for a Chevening Scholarship, you must:
- Be a citizen of a country or territory eligible for the scholarship.
- Have completed an undergraduate degree that meets the requirements for entry into a postgraduate program at a UK university.
- Have at least two years of work experience (equivalent to 2,800 hours).
- Have received an unconditional offer from one of three chosen UK university courses by 13th July 2023.
- Commit to returning to your home country for at least two years after the scholarship.
You are not eligible if you;
- Are a British citizen or have dual British citizenship (unless you are a citizen of a British Overseas Territory or hold BN(O) and are applying from Hong Kong).
- Hold refugee status in a non-eligible country (although applicants who are citizens of an eligible country and hold refugee status in an eligible country are eligible for the scholarship).
- Have worked for or are related to someone who has worked for the UK government, the British Council, a sponsoring UK university, or the Association of Commonwealth Universities within the last two years.
- Have previously received a UK government-funded scholarship to study in the UK.
What is the latest update on the Chevening scholarship application?
Since the deadline for the Chevening Scholarship, applicants have not been informed of any new developments, until the second week of December when some of the ineligible applicants received their rejection letters. At this point, if you receive a rejection message, it is not because your essays are not good enough. But rather that you did not meet the eligibility criteria for the scholarship. Although it will be best for you to update your essay for next year’s application cycle. However, you also have to reflect on which part of the eligibility criteria may have impacted your application. That way, you will avoid repeating the same mistake when filling out the pre-screen form, and other information.
The next phase of rejection is expected to happen towards the end of December and throughout January. This phase relates to the quality of your essay, including your leadership skills, networking skills, why you want to study in the UK, and what your career plan is. You can find tips for writing a Chevening essay here.
After the second phase of rejection is expected to come in January, the third phase of rejection comes in early February. At this stage, your essay might be great, but the various embassies in each country only need to interview the most convincing and outstanding candidates, so some names must still be sifted out.
If I were you, I would relax my mind and not worry so much about the application. You have done the best you can, and at this point, there is nothing more you can do than keep your mind busy with something else. Between December and early February, do not wish to receive mail from Chevening, as it is likely to be bad news.
By mid-February, all those deemed qualified are expected to start receiving mail with good news and will be invited for an interview. If you are among those invited for an interview, well, you should be happy. It simply implies that your essays are unique and you stand a chance of being among the next batch of Chevening Scholars. Well, that is if you successfully pass the interview stage, and we hope you do. You surely have what it takes to succeed.
If you do not make it to the interview stage, or you are rejected after the interview, remember that a rejection letter is not as bad as it looks. Rejections give room for growth, deep reflection, and a rethink of what we want. They allow you to come back stronger, especially if you continue to inspire your world and make a positive impact. There is always a chance that if you do not make it this year, next year could work out just fine. The goal should be to never give up. No matter what the outcome is, be grateful that you still have hope.
Find out more about other scholarship opportunities you can apply for here.