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Scholarship raises student standards

* 9 January 2003 *

Scholarship raises student standards

Twenty students at Sussex are looking forward to a financially stress-free new year after being awarded chemistry scholarships worth up to £1,000.

"I'm really pleased," says Sam Lynas, a 26-year-old first year from St David's in Pembrokeshire: "The award is one of the factors that tipped Sussex in my favour. A grand is much needed."

The scheme, which is backed by international chemical company AstraZeneca, is designed to encourage more high-quality students into the field of chemistry, a subject that nationally has seen numbers falling. This is especially worrying for Britain as the UK is one of the leaders in global chemical research and production.

Students who achieve high grades at A level can apply for the scheme, which potentially is worth £3,000 over the course of their degree. They also get the opportunity to do work experience at AstraZeneca. However, Norman warns: "Students have to keep up the high academic standards to continue with the scholarship."

Inga Marlene Pietsch, originally from Berlin, is one of several students to have reached a high enough standard to receive the scholarship for a second year: "When you have a range of offers this scheme really does make a difference - especially for me, because as an EU student I don't get a student loan."

Norman is pleased with the results of the scheme so far: "The number and quality of applications has gone up so much following the introduction of this scheme, we've started putting up our offers to A level candidates."

* Notes for editors *

Professor Norman Billingham can be contacted on 01273 678313.

Press Office contacts: Benedict Brook or Alison Field, University of Sussex,
Tel. 01273 678888, Fax 01273 877456, or

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