Chevening Scholarship: Tips to ace interview, submit strong application

Chevening Scholarship: Tips to ace interview, submit strong application

The Chevening Scholarship programme enables up to 100 Indian students every year to pursue a one-year master’s degree.

The Chevening Scholarship programme enables up to 100 Indian students every year to pursue a one-year master’s degree. This program is offered in the UK and covers tuition fees, travel, accommodation, visa, medical insurance and living costs.

Every Year, Thousands of students from India travel to the UK to study. In the year ending June 2022, nearly 1,18,000 student visas were issued to Indian nationals. A few people are able to acquire a fully-funded Chevening Scholarship.

This is the UK Government’s international scholarship program which enables students to pursue a one-year master’s degree in the UK. This program covers the tuition fee, travel, accommodation, visa, medical insurance and living costs.

Moreover, the stipend also funds weekend travel across the UK. 1,500 scholars from around 160 countries are offered this award. India alone offers up to 100 awards. Preparation must be done in order to acquire the scholarship. To crack Chevening, online applications and interviews are necessary.

Myth 1: Chevening is only for those from big cities

Chevening is for the best and the brightest. Over 40% of the selected scholars from India in the past few years have come from smaller towns and are often first-generation learners and represent marginalised communities. Moreover, 50% of the cohort are women.

Myth 2: University offer is necessary

Selecting the right courses in the right universities and mentioning them is necessary for an application. Over 12,000 courses in over 150 universities are offered to choose from. However, there is no necessity to have an offer in hand while making your application. Nearly 6 months are given after writing your application to get an offer from any of the universities listed.

Myth 3: Full-time work experience – mandatory

Work experience can be completed before, during or after graduation. This includes paid and unpaid internships or part-time work or volunteering. Applicants are allowed to list nearly 10 different employment experiences to fulfil the number of hours required.

Myth 4: Preferred area of study must be equated with work experience

There is no necessity for the preferred area of study to match the work experience.

Myth 5: Professionals must be hired to write the essays

The essays need to be honest and authentic and thus, they must be written by yourself. The language must be simple and clearly understandable.

Tips on submitting a strong application

Take your time: It is not advisable to rush an application and at the same time you must not wait till the last minute. Read and re-read the application many times before submitting. Getting anything wrong will result in rejection in starting stage itself.

Make your application stand out: An essay tells your story and thus, it is necessary to keep it personal. Reflect on what you wish to achieve beyond the scholarship. Also, include some experiences of your leadership and networking skills and instances of relationships built with people diverse cultures.

Research the courses and universities: You have to choose your three courses carefully as you will not be able to change your course choices after submitting your application. As courses are the focus of your essays, they courses can only be changed slightly.

Transforming the lives of others: The knowledge you gain in the UK must be used to not just advance your own career but spread it in your home country. You can link your goals with your country’s priorities to make your essay stand out and prove your selfless nature.

Choose your referees wisely: References are very important for the selection process. Names of two referees who must be known to you either in an academic or professional capacity must be provided when you submit your application. Moreover, they must know you too well.

Tips to acing the interview

Tell us about yourself: Begin your interview by telling about yourself by letting them know about your biggest achievement and keep good time.

Be yourself: Be honest and tell them the truth about yourself. Everything must not be scripted. You must go with the flow and let the panel know that you are passionate about your plans which is always appreciated.

Read your application: Questions will be asked on the information you provided in the application form. You will be asked to explain your personal and professional aspirations. Also, you must explain how Chevening can facilitate your achievement. You will also be asked to provide an update on your application.

Research the UK: Chevening encourages exploring the culture and the country. You can work on researching the UK and learn its culture at its best.

Listen and keep good time: The interview takes place for 30-minutes. A score is given to every answer. Thus, it is necessary to listen carefully and ask for clarifications if needed. You can take a moment to structure your answer. Keep your answers exact and brief. Questioning the panel shows that you are prepared and interested.

Selecting Chevening scholars takes nearly eight months. Every year, Chevening applications open from early-August to early-November. Candidates who have been shortlisted are interviewed in March/April of the following year. However, awards are announced by mid-June. In September/October, selected scholars travel to the UK. The selection process is demanding but this must not stop you from applying.

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