2023 Fully Funded Mandela Rhodes Foundation (MRF) Postgraduate Scholarships for study in South Africa

The Mandela Rhodes Scholarship is a life-changing leadership journey. The scholarship combines financial support with a leadership programme that will challenge you, grow you, and connect you to young African changemakers – just like you.

The program is built on MRF founding principles of reconciliation, education, entrepreneurship, and leadership, and a belief that leadership begins with inner transformation. MRF aims to keep Nelson Mandela’s legacy alive by equipping young African leaders with the competence and courage to transform the continent into a place where everyone has equal opportunity to thrive. The programme is delivered primarily through a series of week-long residential workshops which you will attend during your time in residence.

Eligibility Requirements

  • If you are between the ages of 19 and 29, are a citizen of any African country, and have a first degree with above average academic results (70% or upper second), you are eligible to apply for the scholarship.
  • MRF is look for young Africans who have demonstrated the potential to embody our founding principles of reconciliation, education, entrepreneurship, and leadership.
  • You must have already assumed leadership and made an impact on your campus or community.

Financial Support

  • The Mandela Rhodes Scholarship offers comprehensive funding for the core costs associated with your studies.
  • It covers tuition for a one-year Honours degree or a two-year Masters degree in any field at a recognised South African institution of higher education.
  • This includes tuition and registration fees, allowances for study materials, research, and medical aid, accommodation and meals, personal allowance and economy class travel to and from your home country to your South African university at the beginning and end of your degree. You will also receive a personal allowance.

Covered Cost

  • Tuition and registration fees as set by your university or institution
  • A study materials allowance as set by the MRF
  • Accommodation and meal allowances as set by the MRF
  • A medical aid allowance as set by the MRF
  • A personal allowance as set by the MRF
  • Research and conferencing grants can be made available on request
  • Economy-class flights for international scholars from their home countries to their institutions at the start and end of their studies

Criteria

MRF is look for young leaders who aspire to the principles below and who have demonstrated the potential to live them out.

Leadership

Do you aspire to be a visionary leader who has moral authority? Do you see leadership as more than just personal ambition – as a way to pursue the advancement of equality and freedom, human rights and human dignity? And do you want to guide and inspire others to reach their full potential?

Reconciliation

Do you believe that reconciliation – combined with reparation – is the key to harnessing an imperfect past to develop a more just world? And are you prepared to start the process by looking at your own internal landscape?

Education

Do you have excellent academic results but believe that your education should not only benefit you but make a difference for others? And do you agree that intellectual excellence must be accompanied by character and a rounded personality?

Entrepreneurship

Do you want to see Africa take its rightful place as an equal and competitive presence in the global world? Have you demonstrated individual effort, innovation and creativity to this end?

Method of Application

The deadline is 21 April, by which time all application documentation needs to have been uploaded. Your recommenders (referees) must have uploaded their references by then in order for your application to be complete.

Timeline:

  • March: Applications open on Tuesday, 22 March 2022. Candidates can add recommenders on the platform and begin uploading their documentation and working on their personal essays. See ‘requirements’.
  • April: Applications close by the end of Thursday, 21 April 2022. No late or incomplete applications will be accepted under any circumstances.
  • June: You will be notified by the end of June whether or not you are through to Round Two.
  • July: You will be notified by the end of July whether or not you are through to Round Three.
  • August: You will be notified by the end of August if you are invited for an interview in the Final Round, or if you have been unsuccessful.
  • October: Interviews will be conducted in South Africa in October. If you are in the final round and you are based outside South Africa, you will be flown in for an in-person interview with our selection committee. You will be notified by the end of October if you are selected as a Mandela Rhodes Scholar.
  • October-December: Selected Mandela Rhodes Scholars must do their best to secure acceptance at their university of choice, and their study visa for travel to South Africa in January.

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