The Richard Wainwright Memorial Scholarships were established in 2009 as a tribute to the life and work of Richard Wainwright, a former student of Imperial College who went on to become a leading architect, housing designer, and urbanist. The scholarships recognize and reward exceptional students from disadvantaged backgrounds.

The Richard Wainwright Memorial Scholarships are awarded each year to outstanding students studying the full range of undergraduate courses offered by Imperial College London. Applicants must demonstrate that they have overcome significant adversity or hardship to achieve their academic success. The scholarships are worth £27,000 per year and will be paid in addition to any other funding that you receive from Imperial College or external sources (such as the NHS bursary).

Scholarships Overview

The Richard Wainwright Memorial Scholarships provide a great opportunity for graduates to kick-start their careers with 12-month placements with an employer of their choice. The scholarships support graduate employment in the public or voluntary sector and are designed to help participants enhance their employability and gain valuable experience.

The aim of the scholarship is to help high-caliber graduates who have already gained a first degree or equivalent qualification to gain experience in any aspect of the public or voluntary sector. There is no restriction on which sector you want to work in – all areas of work within the public or voluntary sector are welcome.

Scholarship Value:

The Richard Wainwright Memorial Scholarships are worth up to £27,000 per year. The awards will be made to the ablest or outstanding applicants from both state and independent schools.

In addition to a substantial annual award (up to £27,000), each successful applicant will be provided with a generous package of training and development opportunities. In addition, successful applicants will have access to finance for the purchase of professional workstation equipment of their choice and tuition fees for courses at the world-renowned London College of Fashion.

Eligible Countries & Regions:

Applicants must meet the following eligibility criteria:

  • 1. They must be a first-time applicant to the University of Leeds;
  • 2. Be a UK national or have been living in the UK for three years prior to your application
  • 3. Have been living in the European Economic Area (EEA) for at least one year prior to your application
  • 4. Be able to demonstrate financial need and that you are committed to pursuing further education with a career in the creative industries by applying for a place on an eligible programme of study at a participating university or college (see below)
  • 5. Be under 25 years old at 31 August 2022
  • 6. They must not have previously held a full-time undergraduate or postgraduate place at any UK university;
  • 7. They should normally have completed their secondary education (high school) in the UK and should provide evidence of this by providing one of the following:
  • GCSE/SATs/GCE results from an examination body which is accredited by Ofqual, such as Edexcel or AQA;
  • or an International Baccalaureate Diploma; or a Certificate of Sixth Form Studies issued by an authority within the UK, such as CCEA or Cambridge Pre-U;
  • or qualification with a similar standard as those listed above,
  • if provided outside the UK.

Where applicants are unable to provide GCSE/SATs/GCE results, they may submit an alternative academic qualification that is comparable in standard to those listed above. The equivalency will be determined by the University on receipt of a request from an applicant who has not completed any of these examinations.

The number of awardees:

The Scholarships are worth up to £27,000 per year and cover tuition fees plus a maintenance allowance for three years. They are open to all students in England who have been accepted to start their first degree at a UK university in September 2022.

How to Apply for Richard Wainwright Memorial Scholarships

It is a merit-based scholarship scheme and the aim is to promote academic achievement whilst recognizing those who are disadvantaged through family circumstance, financial situation, disability, or social background. The scholarships are intended to enable students to reach their full potential irrespective of their circumstances and demonstrate value for money by enhancing employability post-graduation.

Application Process of Richard Wainwright Memorial Scholarships

The scholarships are divided into three categories:

  • Vocational,
  • Academic, and
  • University.

An overall winner will be selected in each category, with the opportunity to receive up to £27,000 per year for three years.

The vocational scholarship is for a candidate that is training for employment or self-employment in a trade or profession, who demonstrates the potential for success. The academic scholarship is for a candidate that is studying at a UK university and demonstrates the potential for success. The university scholarship is for a candidate who has achieved AAB+ grades at A level and will be studying at an accredited UK university.

Also, there are two further scholarships that are only available to candidates who live in the following areas:

  • East London;
  • West Midlands;
  • Manchester;
  • Nottinghamshire;
  • Tees Valley;
  • Cumbria;
  • Tyne and Wear
  • and South Yorkshire.

Selecting the winners of these scholarships requires an application form, which asks questions regarding family income, educational achievements, extracurricular activities, and employment history. The applications are then reviewed by the Trustees of The Richard Wainwright Memorial Scholarships to select the most deserving candidates.

Selection Criteria of the selection of Richard Wainwright Memorial Scholarships

In order to be considered for a Richard Wainwright Memorial Scholarships applicants will need to be applying for an undergraduate course beginning in September 2017 at the University of Sunderland with a minimum of 3 A-Levels at grade C or above or equivalent qualification in an academic subject. They will also need to have achieved between AAA and AAB in their A-Levels or equivalent qualification in an academic subject, achieved a minimum of 580 UCAS Tariff Points including 3 A grades at AS Level (or the International equivalent).


The Richard Wainwright Memorial Scholarships are a wonderful opportunity for young people to further their studies at the UK’s top universities. The first scholarship for each university will be awarded to the highest-scoring candidate (based on their UCAS tariff score) who has been offered a place on a full-time undergraduate course starting in 2015, and who has a household income of less than £42,600 per year.

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