Has Stormzy created a Cambridge scholarship for black students?

  • img Harvey Cawdron
  • POSTED ON 16 Aug 2018

Claims

Stormzy has announced that he will provide funding for 2 black British students to attend the University of Cambridge. 

The Stormzy Scholarship will pay for tuition fees as well as giving students a maintenance grant for up to 4 years of undergraduate study. 

The rapper says 'It's so important for black students, especially, to be aware that it can 100% be an option to attend a university of this calibre.' He will fund 2 students this year and 2 in 2019. 

Stormzy, while giving his reasons for setting up the scholarship, told Radio 1 Newsbeat that 'In school and college I had the ability and was almost destined to go to one of the top universities. But that didn't happen for myself... so hopefully there's another young black student out there that can have that opportunity through my scholarship.'

He said further that 'I always said that there's a whole bunch of academically brilliant, excellent students who also need an incentive.' 

Cambridge has faced criticism for its lack of students admitted from black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) backgrounds. In June, he university called on the help of schools and parents to help increase the number of black British students it admits. This was after the Financial Times reported that some of the university's colleges failed to take in any black students from 2012 to 2016. 

The university claimed to have admitted 58 black students onto undergraduate courses in 2017. 

Stormzy said 'We're going to have young black students who are academically brilliant and smashing it, and they should just have that opportunity to walk into a university like Cambridge'. 

On A-level results day, he announced the scheme at the school he attended in South London. He did not go to university, but achieved 6 A*s, 3 A's and 3 B's in his GCSEs. However, he claimed he 'didn’t do too great at A-levels'.

He said that 'It sounds corny coming from a rapper, but I did love learning and I loved studying so I enjoyed that side of things. But also, I made some of the best friends of my life at school, and so many memories.' 

Stormzy claims that of all his achievements, 'this one in particular' makes his mum proud. He said that 'My mum always had this plan of 'You're going to school and college, then you're going to go Cambridge. It didn't happen for me, so I feel that for me to get to this place in my career and be able to do something where we can help young black students get into Cambridge is a testimony to her hard work as well.' 

When he was a guest speaker at the Oxford University Guild in 2016, he said 'It was my dream to come to Oxford and study political science. I always thought Oxford is better [than Cambridge] anyway, it's got a ring to it.'

To be eligible for the scholarship this year, applicants must be of a black ethnicity and must have an offer from the University of Cambridge. The 30th of August is the application deadline. 

Students aiming for 2019 entry to Cambridge must apply through Ucas by the 15th of October, and a panel of university staff will select students from a list of applicants.