Gates Cambridge Scholarship

Provides full-funding for graduate study at Cambridge University

Gates-Cambridge Scholarship: At a glance


  • A citizen of any country outside the United Kingdom
  • Third- or fourth-year students; recent alum. 
  • Applying to pursue one of the following full-time residential courses of study at the University of Cambridge:
    • PhD
    • MSc/MLitt
    • One year postgraduate course (with some exceptions – see information here about ineligible courses)
  • Must have the academic and research competencies to be a competitive candidate for admission the University of Cambridge.

Selection Criteria: 

  • Superior academic achievement and committment to academic excellence (evidenced through advanced coursework, research, and exceptional letters of recommendation)
  • Ability to argue for their selected graduate programs in specific terms and why they must pursue that training at the University of Cambridge and, more broadly, in the United Kingdom
  • Potential to contribute to chosen field and potential for success beyond post-graduate training
  • Evidence of potential for leadership
  • Evidence of commitment to improving the lives of others
  • Ability to articulate in specific terms what problem(s) or need(s) of society you wish to address in your career

Candidates for the Gates-Cambridge Scholarship must affirm the following: 

  • I have pursued academic excellence throughout my career at the University of Chicago, including: posess a cumulative GPA of 3.65 or higher; have done extensive research in my field and/or can prove that I have the requisite academic background necessary for success in my chosen graduate discipline; can show that I have pursued relevant and advanced course-work that affirms my commitment to my chosen field
  • I can articulate a specific vision for my future and how it will contribute to addressing global issues, as well as elevate the public good and the lives of others
  • I have substantive experiences that affirm my capacities as a leader; I can prove that something changed because of my involvement; and, I have spent time serving others or working to address issues that improve the lives of others
  • I can secure the required two (2) exceptional letters from faculty or researchers in my field to accompany my admission application to Cambridge
  • I can secure a minumum of one (1) exceptional letter from a professional who can affirm my leadership competencies and commitment to addressing the problems/needs of society that motivate me, as well as my commitment to others for the purposes of the Gates-Cambridge Scholarship
  • I can provide a specific argument that Cambridge is a good fit for me, why it is paramount to my studies and future vocation that I pursue my studies there, as well as in the United Kingdom.

Extensive Description

Established in 2000 by a donation of $210 million from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to the University of Cambridge, the Gates Cambridge Scholarships are among the most prestigious international scholarships in the world. The Trust annually awards 95 full-cost fellowships for graduate study in any field at Cambridge University.  Of the total number of awards, 40 are given to citizens of the United States, and 55 are awarded to "international" students - that is, students who are neither US nor UK citizens. The award provides support for the full cost of attendance, travel to and from Cambridge, a monthly stipend, and additional discretionary funds, as appropriate. 

Read more about recent University of Chicago Gates-Cambridge Scholars: Ellen Purdy (BS Chemistry, 2019) and Nicholas Posegay (BA/MA History, 2017)

Deadline Information

Application Deadline for US citizens: Wednesday, October 11, 2023

Application Deadline for citizens of other countries - December 5, 2023, or January 4, 2024 depending on degree program: Tuesday, December 5, 2023

Application Process

Applicants apply for both a Gates Cambridge Scholarship and admission to their chosen postgraduate course at the University of Cambridge. It is not possible to apply for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship without applying to the University of Cambridge in the first instance.

  • Application deadlines for the University of Cambridge vary slightly. You must consult the university's graduate admissions page, and your departmental pages, for exact deadlines. All application information and deadlines can be found HERE.
  • Application deadlines vary for candidates who are US citizens and those who are citizens of other countries. Please carefully review the relevant details based on your citizenship listed on the Gates Cambridge site:

The Gates-Cambridge Scholarship does not require institutional nomination. 

For more information on this opportunity, please contact: 
Dr. Arthur Salvo