Did you know that Nigeria has the third largest group of international postgraduates studying in UK universities? Believe it or not, 11,775 Nigerian students studied for postgraduate degrees in UK universities during 2012 according to research by the British Council and that figure is expected to explode in the years to come with 28,800 Nigerian postgraduates forecasted to study in the UK by 2024!
If you’re thinking about studying for a postgraduate degree, you’ve come to the right place. Below is our ESSENTIAL guide to postgraduate scholarships offered at UK universities for Nigerians.
Having a postgraduate degree can give you a cutting edge in the competitive Nigerian graduate job market. However, if you’re looking for employment in the oil and gas marketplace, there are two sponsorships that could get you that vital foot in the door.
The first is the Niger Delta Postgraduate Scholarship Scheme offered by Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited (SPDC) providing up to 10 scholarships to Nigerian students studying postgraduate degrees in engineering at the University of Leeds, Imperial College London and University College London. The second is the British Council Overseas Scholarship Scheme for Postgraduate Students offered by Nigeria LNG Limited, another large employer in the field of oil and gas.
There’s no guarantee of course that such scholarships will land you a job with the sponsors but it may open up certain doors to you.
If your priority is finding a postgraduate scholarship which has the “prestige factor”, look no further than the Chevening Scholarship for Nigerian postgraduates. Chevening is an international scholarship scheme funded by the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office. Chevening offers Nigerians a number of grants for masters and phd programmes offered by UK universities including Birmingham University, Cambridge University and Nottingham University.
UK Universities are keen to seize on the opportunity offered by Nigerian students and offer scholarships providing discounts from tuition fees. For the 2015 – 2016 academic year, the following were the UK scholarships for Nigerian students looking to do a postgraduate degree:
It goes without saying that the most valuable of all the above is the UKEAS Nigeria Scholarship offered by Bournemouth University in conjunction with the United Kingdom Education Advisory Service (UKEAS). However, fees at each university and for each postgraduate course vary. As such, make sure you do your homework and do a proper comparison between the scholarships on offer for your chosen course before making a decision on submitting your application.
For some, moving to a new country will be a daunting process. If you’re worried about being home sick, it may be best to study in a city where there are fellow expats from Nigeria. Over 100,000 Nigerians currently live in the UK according to recent estimates. Although, you can find pockets of Nigerians across the UK, the largest Nigerian communities are found in London.
Peckham has the largest Nigerian community in London. The London Metropolitan University offers the Dr. Murtala Muhammed Postgraduate Scholarship and is a great option if you want to live in Peckham. There is a direct train from Peckham Rye Station to Highbury & Islington Station (a short walk to the London Metropolitan University’s Tower Building). Be warned though, the Dr. Murtalala Muhammed Postgraduate Scholarship supports only one student from Nigeria a year so competition is likely to be strong.
Finally, all of the information provided here is based on the latest postgraduate scholarships offered for Nigerians in the 2015 – 2016 academic year. This can be used as a general guide but we promise to update the information when information is released for the academic year starting in 2016.
Here is a list of all the institutions in the UK that offered postgraduate scholarships specifically to Nigerian students for the 2015 – 2016 academic year:
Bournemouth University – Nigeria Scholarship
University of Buckingham – International High Achiever Scholarship
Imperial College London – SPDC Niger Delta Postgraduate Scholarship Scheme
University of Leeds – SPDC Niger Delta Postgraduate Scholarship Scheme
London Metropolitan University – Dr. Murtala Muhammed Postgraduate Scholarship
Newcastle University –Nigeria Scholarships
Portsmouth University – Postgraduate Scholarships
University of Sheffield – Nigeria Merit Postgraduate Scholarships
Sussex University – Sussex Nigeria Scholarship
University College London – SPDC Niger Delta Postgraduate Scholarship Scheme
Any UK university – British Council Overseas Scholarship Scheme for Postgraduate Students in Conjunction with Nigeria LNG Limited
Any UK university – Chevening Nigeria Scholarships