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Cambridge announces scholarship programme in PM's name

Around 1.5 million pounds have been invested for supporting ten "Manmohan Singh undergraduate scholars."

education Updated: Jan 13, 2009 12:36 IST

The University of Cambridge Monday announced a new scholarship programme for Indian students in the name of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who is also an alumnus of the university.

“Through this initiative we want to emphasise that we want students coming to the university based on academic potential regardless of socio-economic means,” Vice Chancellor Allison Richard told reporters here.

Around 1.5 million pounds have been invested for supporting ten "Manmohan Singh undergraduate scholars".

“The programme will provide full funding, covering fees and maintenance, for undergraduate study in any subject at any of the colleges that are a part of the university,” she said.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh graduated from Cambridge with a first in Economics in the late 1950s. The new scholarship programme will complement the three Manmohan Singh Scholarships that were launched for post-graduate students at Singh's former college - St John's College, Cambridge, in Nov 2007.

Adding that “a Cambridge education is not for everybody”, Richard, who is on a ten-day visit to India, said: ”The number of scholarships would be proportional to the level of need of students identified on the basis of outstanding academic record and potential assessed form admission forms.”

Richard said the first set of Manmohan Singh undergraduate scholars to Cambridge would be ushered in 2010 and “the path ahead will include growing and multiplying partnership with the world and especially in India.”

The programme is being financially supported primarily by Cambridge Assessment as well as Sunil Bharti Mittal-led company Bharati Airtel and Sir Evelyn and Lady Lynn de Rothschild through the Eranda Foundation.

This year the university has entered its 800th year. Richard will also be signing an MoU with Infosys for collaborating across several areas, including management, architecture and engineering.

She also visited the country last year with a similar aim of honing Cambridge-India partnerships. The visit resulted in the signing of MoUs with CII (Confederation of Indian Industries), Tata Sons and Astra Zeneca.

At present, there are around 18,000 students at the university, of which 17 percent are from abroad. About 220 students are from India, of which about 70 are undergraduate scholars.