Sri Lankan students encouraged to apply to continue their STEM education at a prestigious UK university
The British Council Scholarships for Women in STEM supports women wishing to pursue their postgraduate study in science, technology, engineering or maths at a university in the UK.
This prestigious scholarship will allow over 100 women from selected countries (including from South Asia, East Asia, wider Europe, and the Americas) to obtain a master’s degree or an Early Academic Fellowship from a globally-ranked UK university, giving them the opportunity to further develop their STEM careers, and as a result positively impact their communities.
According to data from the UN Scientific Education and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), fewer than 30 percent of researchers worldwide are women, and only 30 percent of female students select STEM-related fields in higher education. Globally, female students’ enrolment is particularly low in Information and Communications Technology (three percent), natural science, mathematics and statistics (five percent), and engineering, manufacturing and construction (eight percent).
Partnering with 19 universities across the UK, this global scholarship scheme includes tuition fees, a monthly stipend, travel costs, visa and health coverage fees, and is open to women who can demonstrate their need for financial support. Women with dependants are also encouraged to apply, with extra support made available to them.
The last cohort of 120 scholars were enrolled for their chosen course last Autumn.
“My dream of studying in the UK was made possible thanks to the British Council women in STEM (WIS) scholarship programme and Goldsmiths, University of London,” said Dilanka Kamali Ratnayake, currently pursuing a master’s degree in Social Entrepreneurship. “The British Council women in STEM scholarship has allowed me to grow both professionally and personally. Not only did I get to learn about the latest developments in this field of Social Entrepreneurship, but I also had the privilege to attend seminars and workshops conducted by some of the best minds in the field. It has given me the chance to explore different cultures and gain invaluable knowledge and skills that are essential for any career path I choose in the future. I am grateful for this opportunity and am looking forward to what lies ahead!”
“Being an Engineer in the construction industry in Sri Lanka, I have constantly been eager to learn about how the industry can improve in terms of better processes and sustainable practices,” said Sayuri Sumithrarachchi, a WIS scholar currently studying at the University of London. “As a part of my master’s in Construction Management, I’m learning about new concepts in the field, which are expanding my views beyond traditional construction methodologies. Studying in the UK also exposed me to a fraternity of incredible people from around the globe, from whom I am learning about different cultures and practices. In addition to the tuition cost, the scholarship covered all my travel costs and provided me with a monthly stipend as well. This has enabled me to concentrate on my studies and make the most of this opportunity. Studying in the UK so far has been a transformative experience for me, and I believe this scholarship is a wonderful opportunity that supports women in STEM-related fields to reach further in their careers.”
Prospective candidates from Sri Lanka can apply for both the Master’s Scholarships and Early Academic Fellowships.
“The UK has a world-renowned higher education sector that is truly international,” said Orlando Edwards, Country Director at the British Council Sri Lanka. “These scholarships will enable talented women to take up a life-changing opportunity to develop their careers in their chosen STEM fields, and then to harness the experience to make a greater impact for good when they return home. I would highly encourage women from Sri Lanka to apply for this opportunity at the earliest.”
For more information, including a full list of participating UK universities and available courses, please visit:
Applications are open for the British Council Scholarships for Women in STEM, and application deadlines vary, depending on the UK institution – but are between March and May 2023.
About the British Council
The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We build connections, understanding and trust between people in the UK and other countries through arts and culture, education and the English language. Last year we reached over 67 million people directly and 745 million people overall including online, and through broadcasts and publications. Founded in 1934 we are a UK charity governed by Royal Charter and a UK public body. We receive a 15 per cent core funding grant from the UK government.