Mandela Scholarship (2023)

The Mandela Scholarship was established in 1973 to protest against the injustice of apartheid and raise the profile of Nelson Mandela’s struggle for freedom. Following his release from Prison in 1990, Mandela wrote to the Scholarship Fund stating: “the power of education extends beyond the development of skills we need for economic success. It can contribute to nation-building and reconciliation.” Applicants must evidence how they will embrace the values of Mandela and use their postgraduate degree to make a positive contribution towards their community and home country.

What you get

Full tuition fee waiver and £12,000 maintenance.

Type of award

Full Fee Waiver and Maintenance

Funding type

Donor funded


To be eligible for this scholarship, you must:

  • have applied and received an offer for a full time, eligible Masters degree at Sussex starting in September 2023
  • be a South African national
  • hold a good undergraduate degree from an African university, the equivalent of a UK Upper Second class degree

Preference may be given to candidates with work experience, who see a Masters at Sussex as a catalyst for future career development. Preference will also be given to applicants that do not already hold the equivalent of a UK Masters degree.

You are not eligible for this scholarship if you:

  • Are applying for a Masters at a university that is not at the University of Sussex
  • Are studying an online course
  • Already hold another University of Sussex scholarship (i.e Chancellors Masters Scholarship)

You are not eligible for this scholarship if you are going to study any of the following:

  • Early Years Education (with Early Years Qualified Teacher Status) MA
  • Any course taught by the Brighton and Sussex Medical School (BSMS)
  • Masters degrees in Social Work (if receiving an NHS bursary)
  • PGCE courses
  • Schools Direct teaching course
  • Any Masters funded by the research councils (e.g. those receiving ESRC 1+3 funding)

Number of scholarships available



9 May 2023 23:59

How to apply

Apply here for the scholarship when you have accepted an offer of a place on an eligible Masters at Sussex.

To be considered for the scholarship, applicants will need to provide a written statement that details their background, ambitions, future plans and leadership potential.

Apply now

Scholarship success stories

The Mandela Scholarship has been truly transformative for many people. Since it was founded, more than 80 students have gained a qualification with 96% of scholars returning home to become leaders in their field: scientists, environmentalists, development professionals and government ministers. You can read about the success of previous Mandela Scholars here.

My time at Sussex has shaped me into a well-rounded international legal scholar and prepared me for making my mark on the world. None of this would have been possible without the support of the Mandela Scholarship” Lewis Sibanda
LLM 2020

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Successful applicants will be notified after the scholarship panel meet, all applicants will be notified of the outcome before 1 July 2023.


At level(s):
PG (taught)

Application deadline:
9 May 2023 23:59 (GMT)


The award is available to people from the following country: