Every year the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Great Britain offers the scholarship opportunity for getting master’s degree in this country to candidates from all over the world. Starting from academic years of 1994-1995 Azerbaijani students can also take advantage of Chevening program; in academic years of 2016-2017 this program plans to allocate scholarship to three representatives from Azerbaijan; each year this number may increase depending on the budget. The competition has already been announced and the deadline for submitting the documents is November 3rd, 2015.
Applying to Chevening:
Applying to Chevening is carried out online. For that, you are required to register at www.chevening.org/apply section. As it is shown on the right photo, click on ‘’Azerbaijan’’ and Scholarship’’ sections and press on ‘’search’’ button, then press on link ‘’apply’’ photo in the open window and enter the page about scholarship terms for Azerbaijan.
First you will see “Eligibility Criteria” ,page. After answering all the questions here, you can move to other steps of the application. Requirements:
- You should have a bachelor’s degree.
- You should have two years of experience a volunteer, part-time or full-time employee.
- You should have clear ambitions such as to become a leader, decision maker and social figure in your country.
- You should not have a British citizenship.
- You should not have any prior scholarship from British government.
- You should not hold any activity at institutions relating to the government of Britain such as: embassy, council, university, also a temporary or constant job or practice after July 2013.
- You should not have a family member working in the above mentioned agencies starting from the indicated date.
- Finally, after graduation you should be ready to come back to Azerbaijan for the period of at least 2 years. (Do not be anxious, this is related to British visa and depends on your work specifics; it is possible that you would work abroad at any work area related to Azerbaijan, such as in our deputy commission at EU or at Deutche Welle as a correspondent over Azerbaijan). Eventually, you are about to start the application procedure!
You will be required to enter this information step by step.
English language certificate –IELTS Minimum 6.5 or TOEFL IBT 79
It is great if you already have such a valid degree! But if you do not have it, do not get upset. Once you have applied to Chevening , you will have a chance to take exam and add your results to application online till July 14th.
Admission documents from British (English, Scottish and North Irish) universities.
If you haven’t still received an admission letter, do not be frustrated. Please, enter the applied or planned programs into 3 university program options provided to you during application process in the desired order. To be exact, if you receive an enrollment into all three programs, you should first enter the program you prefer more.
Motivation letters: Personal Statement and Home Country Benefit Statement
Actually, in previous applications Chevening required these two essays in the form of separate letters. Since last year, instead of writing two essays, you are required to answer 4 essay questions in the online application form.
These questions are as follows:
Leadership and Influence - 50-500 words
Networking skills- 50-500 words
Study in the UK – i.e. why the universities that you chose, why those programs, their relation to your professional past and future plans - 50-500 words
Career plan – What are your plans after finishing your studies and how will it contribute to Chevening’s priority areas in Azerbaijan? - 50-500 words
As you see from the main idea of these essay questions, it is exactly the equivalent to the context of two previous letters. For that, try to consider two letters as 4 paragraphs.
If you put together the advice given by your friends experienced in this field, you can take into account below mentioned general recommendations to answer any questions related to motivation letters:
Try to give brief answers to the questions; maximum 250 words for one question would be enough.
Instead of repeating the details indicated in your CV/Resume in sequential order, emphasize the most important ones from the point of view of their contribution.
In order to assess why Chevening program supports namely you, try to build a link between your past steps and your future plans while answering the questions about your future intentions (such as home benefit statement). This is important for making your plans persuasive. In case you pass the interview, the questions will be of similar character. Try to give the answers in comprehensive and fluent English; after writing them down you can check the accuracy on grammarly.com online platform or with your English speaking friends.
Reference letter- 2.
It would be good if one of the recommendation letters is written in fluent English by one of your teachers at any of your academic stages.
You can choose another recommendation letter freely. Try to get the letter written by any authority person or person that had business relations with you:
How long has this person known you?
What kind of relations are they? (professional, academic, management, voluntary, religious, etc.)
When was the last time you communicated with each other? (Your referee and you)
A short certificate about your skills: leadership and networking; personal, intellectual communication with people; your ability required to finish the academic program in Great Britain.
A short-list about your approval/ disapproval for the next stage will be provided to you at the end of January or in February. Generally, an invitation email for the interview that will be held in April is sent to you no later than the beginning of March. That is right that in case of updates about your Chevening application, you constantly receive emails in this regard, but it would be better if you check your online account periodically. Do not hurry to ask questions about the interview. Just pass the first stage, and then I will try to share my notes on tier4 student visa and initial steps that could be useful for a student life in Great Britain. Good luck!
Narmin Rahimli – the winner of Chevening Scholarship Program2014.