Bursaries for undergraduate and graduate students
The Cambridge Bursaries Scheme provides grants of up to £3,500 p.a. for undergraduate students from the lowest income households. Average student debt is forecast at close to £50,000 on graduation, even with maximum grant support from the CBS and the government grant scheme. The government grant scheme has now ended and so this debt burden will rise for those from the lowest income households, unless we can provide replacement support from other sources.
The Enhanced Bursary
Robinson College is participating in a pilot programme of enhanced bursaries for all final year UK and EU students from families with a household income of up to about £62,000. It is intended to top up the Cambridge Bursary for those eligible for it, and in addition to support those from middle income families who won’t receive the Cambridge Bursary. It is funded mainly by donations from alumni.
Graduate students are not eligible for the CBS, so College hardship funds are particularly important for them, especially in unforeseen circumstances. Thanks to donors, the College has a range of additional bursary funds available to offer in cases of greatest need. These include the Pegasus Bursary Fund and the Bye Fellows’ Fund for students.
“Coming from a low income, single parent family deep in rural Lincolnshire I was worried that I would struggle to make ends meet in Cambridge during my studies. However, the bursary has helped me settle into Cambridge life more fully; helping me to buy essentials, textbooks and May Ball tickets. As an active member of the College and a Law student I have lots of responsibilities and commitments to handle, but the bursary has alleviated any financial worries that I had before I came to Cambridge and I am so grateful to the donors. I am very happy at Robinson College - it is a supportive and positive environment and I am lucky to live and study in such an inspiring place.”
Mollie (Law, 2016)
Subject specific student support funds
The College is also fundraising for a range of other funds to support costs associated with studying specific subjects. These include the Chaffield Shaw Medical Support Fund, the Isi Metzstein Fund for Architects, the Chaffield Shaw Medieval and Modern Languages Support Fund and the Matsuo Fund (Asian and Middle Eastern Studies). The Nicola Blakeman Memorial Fund provides a new book for each Law Fresher annually and supports bursaries for Robinson Law students in financial need.
Graduate student scholarships
Through fundraising, Robinson is increasing the number of graduate student scholarships that it is able to offer in addition to the bursary funds described above. There are a range of PhD scholarships which aim to make awards to cover both the home status-level fees and living costs for a student over three years of PhD research and writing. These include the Lewis Research Studentship for the Humanities; two Judy and Nigel Weiss Scholarships in the Arts and Humanities; the Laura Ashley Holdings Cambridge Scholarship, the endowment for which is being generously contributed by Laura Ashley Holdings between 2014 and 2018; and the Lewis Research Studentship in Chemistry.