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Chevening scholarship is one of the most prestigious scholarships for
international students to study in the UK. The scholarship enables outstanding emerging leaders from all over the
world to pursue one-year master’s degrees in the UK. Chevening scholars participate in
exclusive events and training; meet, and build a global network with likeminded
people from around the world. And very importantly, you don’t worry about your
fees and expenses. You simply get paid to go to school.

Application for the Chevening scholarship typically opens in August
and closes in November each year. And up to 1,500 scholarships are awarded
every year.

In one of our
interviews with scholarship winners, we spoke with Charles Adedugba, a
Chevening Scholarship winner studying masters in Electrical Engineering for
Sustainable and Renewable Energy at University of Nottingham in the UK. Charles
shared his experience on what it takes to win a Chevening scholarship. So in
today’s video, we bring you insider secrets to winning a Chevening Scholarship.
We will cover:

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The four pillar qualities of Chevening ScholarsHow to write the Chevening Scholarship EssayShould you apply for scholarship before or after admissionInterview tips and more.

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Want to watch instead? See How to Win the Chevening Scholarship in 2020 video below

Who is a typical Chevening Scholar?

The first step
in getting any scholarship, including Chevening, is to make sure you are
eligible to apply. If you do not yet meet some requirements, you can then make
the effort to add it to your portfolio. For the Chevening, there are four
pillars qualities you must possess to be awarded a Scholarship. In the order of
importance, number one is;

Demonstrate Leadership Potential

For Chevening
Scholarship the flagship quality is leadership potential. Academic performance
is the background, but the most important quality is your demonstrated ability
to lead. This does not mean that you should have held a political position or
headed an organization. You just have to possess the innate qualities of a
leader. How do you stand out? Are you proactive? Are you a problem solver and
innovative? Have you initiated something to bring about change or solution to a
problem individually or as a team? These are all qualities of a leader.

The second
pillar quality is…

Ability to Communicate Effectively

Beyond leadership, you must be able to communicate with people effectively. You cannot be a leader in isolation. You should be able to meet and interact with people. Your ability to communicate effectively will the accessed from your application and during interviews.

Reading is boring? Watch How to Win the Chevening Scholarship in 2020

The third
pillar quality is…

a Future Plan

Are you ambitious and have a plan for your life? Why did you choose
your course of study? Why do you want to study in the UK? Why do you need the
Chevening scholarship? And how will all of these help achieve your future goals?
You must be able to answer these questions. You should have a vision and have a
plan to implement it.

The four pillar quality is…

Graduate with at least
Second class upper

The basic
requirement for a Chevening scholarship is to graduate with at least a second
class upper. Most Chevening scholars hold a 2:1. So you don’t have to be a
first class student to get this scholarship.

Typical Chevening Scholars tend to have ambition, leadership potential, and a strong academic background. Your ability to submit a strong application that demonstrates you are capable of excelling on an intense master’s course in the UK, and that you have a clear vision for your future – and maybe even that of your sector or your country, will set you on the part to success.

Reading is boring? Watch How to Win the Chevening Scholarship

Work Experience

Chevening Scholarships
require that applicants have at least two years of work experience. This can be
a full-time or part-time employment, voluntary work or internship; paid or
unpaid. Work experience can be completed before, during, or after graduating
from your undergraduate studies, but excludes industrial attachments or
internships that are part of your school work. You
do not need to meet the work experience requirement in one period of
employment. But your total working experience must be up to two years.

Writing a Winning Chevening Scholarship Essay

The essay is
where you demonstrate your personality to become a Chevening scholar. If you
successfully checked out the above requirements, you wouldn’t find it difficult
telling your story.

scholarship application requires four essays about 500 words each. Each of
these essays reflects one of the four pillar qualities. The trick is to not see
it as four different essays but as one long segmented essay. Let all the parts
connect. The essay on Leadership should link to networking; networking should link
to your future plan, your future plan should link to your academics, and
academic back to leadership.

If you have
been involved in volunteering activities, this will help emphasize your
leadership, communication or even visionary ability. Volunteering is a great
way to demonstrate your interest and passion for a cause. While there is no
specific essay on volunteering, your volunteering efforts can help write a
compelling essay.

When you have written your essay, get someone else to proofread it and
give their honest feedback. If possible get someone that has probably gone through
the same process before to help proofread your application.


If you are shortlisted to interview for a Chevening Scholarship, then you will be invited to attend an interview at the British embassy or high commission.

While you might naturally feel nervous in advance of the
interview, do remember that to have made it to the interview stage is a huge
achievement, and it means that you are already one of the strongest candidates.
An interview is a great opportunity to really demonstrate why you should be
selected for a scholarship and why you should join the Chevening community.

You will be asked a series of
questions discussing some of the information you provided in the application
form. The panel will ask questions that will enable you to explain your
personal and professional aspirations, and how Chevening can facilitate your
achievement of these goals. Your course choices will also be discussed and you
will be asked to provide an update on your applications.

Scholarship or Admission Application; which
should come first?

Selecting the right courses at the right universities is one
of the most important aspects of your application. But you don’t have to be awarded admission to apply for the
scholarship. According to Charles, “I did
not apply to the university until I got the Chevening Scholarship. I applied
for the university admission the day I got my Chevening scholarship”. So
you don’t have to apply for admission before applying for Chevening

In summary, if you’re still an undergraduate student, work on getting good grades. For
everyone else, identify something you really are interested in, a problem you
really want to be a part of the solution, something that pushes you beyond your
academics and emphasize this throughout your application. The world makes way
for one that knows where he is going. If you are clear on where you are going
and why, you may just be one of the next Chevening Scholarship winners.

If you are a
Chevening Scholar, feel free to share your experience in the comment section.
If you have questions about the Chevening Scholarship, the comment section is
open. If you found this video helpful, thumb up and share. If you are yet to
subscribe to After School Africa, this is likely a good time to subscribe.
Until next time. YOUR SUCCESS MATTERS!

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