Gates-Cambridge Scholarship


In October 2000 the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation donated $210 million to the University of Cambridge, establishing the Gates Cambridge Trust. The trust awards Gates Cambridge Scholarships, prestigious international scholarships that enable outstanding graduates from outside the UK to study at Cambridge. The aim of the program is to create a network of future leaders committed to improving the lives of others. 

There is no one template for a Gates Scholar: Each scholar is different and brings something unique to the program. However, when selecting Gates scholars, the Trust looks for students with enthusiasm, robustness of intellect, a willingness to engage and an appropriate humility that comes from an awareness that nothing is ever really simple. The Trust expects a good match to be made between the applicant's qualifications and aspirations and what Cambridge has to offer. Successful applicants will have the ability to make a significant contribution to their discipline while in Cambridge, with a strong aptitude for research, analysis, and a creative approach to defining and solving problems. 


Candidates for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship:

  • may be citizens of any country outside the United Kingdom.
  • may apply to study any subject available at the University of Cambridge.
  • may apply to pursue one of the following full-time residential courses of study:
    PhD (three year research-only degree)
    One year postgraduate course (e.g. MPhil, LL.M, MASt, Diploma, MBA, etc.)
    MSc or MLitt (two year research-only degree)
    MBBChir Clinical Studies (three year postgraduate degree)
  • must be admitted to one of the degrees above at Cambridge through the University's normal admission procedures.  The Trust does not admit students.
  • must be well prepared for the Cambridge course for which they are applying and must meet all of the conditions for admission specified by the University (e.g. academic, English language proficiency, if required, and any other conditions set).
  • must be able to show evidence of high academic achievement, leadership potential, social commitment and a good fit with Cambridge
  • who are already studying at Cambridge are only eligible to apply for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship if they are applying for a new course of study. 


All applicants apply simultaneously for admission as a graduate student to the University of Cambridge and a Gates Cambridge Scholarship using the one application pack.  Applicants must submit all of the following to the Board of Graduate Studies:

  • GRADSAF application form           (online or hard copy)
  • Academic Transcripts                    (hard copy)
  • References                                      (2 academic and 1 personal) hard copy
  • English language test scores      (if required) hard copy
  • Any other documents required     (e.g. research proposal, example of written work, etc.) hard copy

Application Schedule and Deadlines

  • Application deadline                         October 15
  • Departmental ranking                      November
  • Trust shortlisting                               Mid-December
  • Shortlisted candidates contacted  Mid-December
  • Interviews                                            Early February
  • Scholarships offered                        Early February

For more detailed information please visit the Gates Cambridge Scholarship website