Rhodes Scholarship
The Rhodes Scholarship, named after Cecil Rhodes, is an international postgraduate award for study at the University of Oxford
University of Oxford
The University of Oxford is a university located in Oxford, United Kingdom. It is the second-oldest surviving university in the world and the oldest in the English-speaking world. Although its exact date of foundation is unclear, there is evidence of teaching as far back as 1096...

. It was the first large-scale programme of international scholarship
A scholarship is an award of financial aid for a student to further education. Scholarships are awarded on various criteria usually reflecting the values and purposes of the donor or founder of the award.-Types:...

s, and is widely considered the "world's most prestigious scholarship" by many public sources such as Time
Time (magazine)
Time is an American news magazine. A European edition is published from London. Time Europe covers the Middle East, Africa and, since 2003, Latin America. An Asian edition is based in Hong Kong...

, Yale University
Yale University
Yale University is a private, Ivy League university located in New Haven, Connecticut, United States. Founded in 1701 in the Colony of Connecticut, the university is the third-oldest institution of higher education in the United States...

 Press, The McGill Reporter, and Associated Press
Associated Press
The Associated Press is an American news agency. The AP is a cooperative owned by its contributing newspapers, radio and television stations in the United States, which both contribute stories to the AP and use material written by its staff journalists...


Rhodes Scholars may study any full-time postgraduate course offered by the University, whether a taught Master’s programme, a research degree, or a second undergraduate degree (senior status). In the first instance, the scholarship is awarded for two years. However, it may also be held for one year or three years. Applications for a third year are considered during the course of the second year.

University and College fees are paid by the Rhodes Trust. In addition, Scholars receive a monthly maintenance stipend to cover accommodation and living expenses. Although all scholars become affiliated with a residential college
Residential college
A residential college is an organisational pattern for a division of a university that places academic activity in a community setting of students and faculty, usually at a residence and with shared meals, the college having a degree of autonomy and a federated relationship with the overall...

 while at Oxford, they also enjoy access to Rhodes House
Rhodes House
Rhodes House is part of the University of Oxford in England. It is located on the south of South Parks Road in central Oxford, and was built in memory of Cecil Rhodes, an alumnus of the university and a major benefactor.- History :...

, an early 20th century mansion with numerous public rooms, gardens, a library, study areas, and other facilities.

"For more than a century, Rhodes scholars have left Oxford with virtually any job available to them. For much of this time, they have overwhelmingly chosen paths in scholarship, teaching, writing, medicine, scientific research, law, the military and public service. They have reached the highest levels in virtually all fields."


Known as the "world's oldest and most prestigious international graduate scholarship", the Rhodes Scholarships are administered and awarded by the Rhodes Trust, which was established in 1902 under the terms and conditions of the will of Cecil John Rhodes, and funded by his estate under the administration of Nathan Rothschild
Nathan Rothschild, 1st Baron Rothschild
Nathan Mayer Rothschild, 1st Baron Rothschild, Baron de Rothschild was a British banker and politician from the international Rothschild financial dynasty.-Life and family:...

. Scholarships have been awarded to applicants annually since 1902 on the basis of academic achievement and strength of character. There have been more than 7,000 Rhodes Scholars since the inception of the Trust. More than 4,000 are still living.

In 1925, the Commonwealth Fund Fellowships (later renamed the Harkness Fellowship
Harkness Fellowship
The Harkness Fellowships are a programme run by the Commonwealth Fund of New York City. They were established to reciprocate the Rhodes Scholarships and enable Fellows from several countries to spend time studying in the United States...

s) were established to reciprocate the Rhodes Scholarships by enabling British graduates to study in the United States. The Kennedy Scholarship
Kennedy Scholarship
Kennedy Scholarships provide full funding for six to eight British post-graduate students to study at either Harvard University or the Massachusetts Institute of Technology...

 program, created in 1966 as a living memorial to John F. Kennedy
John F. Kennedy
John Fitzgerald "Jack" Kennedy , often referred to by his initials JFK, was the 35th President of the United States, serving from 1961 until his assassination in 1963....

, adopts a comparable selection process to the Rhodes Scholarships to allow 10 British post-graduate students per year to study at either Harvard or MIT.


Rhodes' legacy specified four standards by which applicants were to be judged:
  • Literary and scholastic attainments;
  • Energy to use one's talents to the fullest, as exemplified by fondness for and success in sports;
  • Truth, courage, devotion to duty, sympathy for and protection of the weak, kindliness, unselfishness and fellowship;
  • Moral force of character and instincts to lead, and to take an interest in one's fellow beings.

This legacy originally provided for scholarships for the British colonies
British Empire
The British Empire comprised the dominions, colonies, protectorates, mandates and other territories ruled or administered by the United Kingdom. It originated with the overseas colonies and trading posts established by England in the late 16th and early 17th centuries. At its height, it was the...

, the United States, and Germany. These three were chosen because it was thought that " ... a good understanding between England, Germany and the United States of America will secure the peace of the world ... "

Rhodes, who attended Oxford University (as a member of Oriel College
Oriel College
Oriel College is a constituent college of the University of Oxford in Oxford, England. Located in Oriel Square, the college has the distinction of being the oldest royal foundation in Oxford...

), chose his alma mater as the site of his great experiment because he believed its residential college
Residential college
A residential college is an organisational pattern for a division of a university that places academic activity in a community setting of students and faculty, usually at a residence and with shared meals, the college having a degree of autonomy and a federated relationship with the overall...

s provided the ideal environment for intellectual contemplation and personal development.

Rhodes' original aim with the Scholarship and subsequent changes

An early change was the elimination of the scholarships for Germany during World Wars I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

 and II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

. No German scholars were chosen from 1914 to 1929, nor from 1940 to 1969.

Rhodes' bequest was whittled down considerably in the first decades after his death, as various scholarship trustees were forced to pay taxes upon their own deaths. A change occurred in 1929, when an Act of Parliament
Act of Parliament
An Act of Parliament is a statute enacted as primary legislation by a national or sub-national parliament. In the Republic of Ireland the term Act of the Oireachtas is used, and in the United States the term Act of Congress is used.In Commonwealth countries, the term is used both in a narrow...

 established a fund separate from the original proceeds of Rhodes' will and made it possible to expand the number of scholarships. Between 1993 and 1995, scholarships were extended to other countries in the European Community.

Because the Sex Discrimination Act 1975
Sex Discrimination Act 1975
The Sex Discrimination Act 1975 is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom which protected men and women from discrimination on the grounds of sex or marriage. The Act concerned employment, training, education, harassment, the provision of goods and services, and the disposal of premises...

in the United Kingdom did not affect wills, it took another Act of Parliament to change the Rhodes' will to extend selection criteria in 1977 to include women.

For at least its first 75 years, scholars usually studied for a Bachelor of Arts
Bachelor of Arts
A Bachelor of Arts , from the Latin artium baccalaureus, is a bachelor's degree awarded for an undergraduate course or program in either the liberal arts, the sciences, or both...

 degree. While that remains an option, more recent scholars usually study for an advanced degree
Degrees of Oxford University
The system of academic degrees in the University of Oxford can be confusing to those not familiar with it. This is not merely because many degree titles date from the Middle Ages, but also because many changes have been haphazardly introduced in recent years...



Australia 9 6
Bermuda 1 1
Canada 11 2
Newfoundland 1 1
Germany 2  —
Hong Kong  —  —
India 6  —
Jamaica 1 1
1  —
Kenya 2  —
New Zealand 3 1
Pakistan 1  —
Southern Africa 10 5
USA 32 32
Zambia &
(formerly Rhodesia)

Total 83 52

There were originally 52 scholarships.

Four South Africa
South Africa
The Republic of South Africa is a country in southern Africa. Located at the southern tip of Africa, it is divided into nine provinces, with of coastline on the Atlantic and Indian oceans...

n boys' schools were mentioned in Rhodes' will, each to receive an annual scholarship: the Boys High School
Paul Roos Gymnasium
Paul Roos Gymnasium is a government school for boys in the town of Stellenbosch, Western Cape, South Africa, founded in 1866 as Stellenbosch Gymnasium....

, in Stellenbosch (today known as Paul Roos Gymnasium); the Diocesan College
Diocesan College
The Diocesan College, or Bishops as it is more commonly known, is an independent, all-boys school situated in the suburb of Rondebosch in Cape Town, South Africa...

 (Bishops) in Rondebosch
Rondebosch is one of the Southern Suburbs of Cape Town, South Africa. It is primarily a residential suburb, with a medium-size shopping area, a small business district as well as the main campus of the University of Cape Town.-History:...

; the South African College Schools
South African College Schools
The South African College Schools, commonly referred to as SACS, is a primary and secondary education institution located in Newlands, Cape Town, South Africa. Founded in 1829, it is the oldest school in South Africa and one of four schools expressly named by Cecil John Rhodes to offer an annual...

 (SACS) in Newlands
Newlands, Cape Town
Newlands is an upmarket suburb of Cape Town, South Africa.It is located at the foot of Table Mountain in the Southern Suburbs of Cape Town, and is the wettest suburb in South Africa due to its high winter rainfall...

; and St Andrew's College in Grahamstown
Grahamstown is a city in the Eastern Cape Province of the Republic of South Africa and is the seat of the Makana municipality. The population of greater Grahamstown, as of 2003, was 124,758. The population of the surrounding areas, including the actual city was 41,799 of which 77.4% were black,...


During the ensuing 100 years, the Trustees added at one time or another approximately another 40 scholarships, though not all have continued. Some of these extended the scheme to Commonwealth countries not mentioned in the Will. A more detailed allocation by region by year can be found at Rhodes Scholarship Allocations
Rhodes Scholarship Allocations
Rhodes Scholarship Allocations — below is a table of allocations of Rhodes Scholarships by "Geographic Constituency" by year. "Geographic Constituency" is as defined by the Rhodes Trust....

. Very brief summaries of some of the terms and conditions can be found on the Trust's web site. Complete details can be obtained from the nominating countries.

Currently, scholars are selected from citizens of 14 specified geographic constituencies, namely: Australia; Bermuda; Canada; Germany; Hong Kong; India; Jamaica & Commonwealth Caribbean; Kenya; New Zealand; Pakistan; Southern Africa (South Africa and neighbours Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Namibia and Swaziland); USA; Zambia; and Zimbabwe.

From 2006, 11 scholarships were suspended for a period of 5 years. The scholarships for Hong Kong
Hong Kong
Hong Kong is one of two Special Administrative Regions of the People's Republic of China , the other being Macau. A city-state situated on China's south coast and enclosed by the Pearl River Delta and South China Sea, it is renowned for its expansive skyline and deep natural harbour...

 were abolished in July 1997 following its withdrawal from the Commonwealth
Commonwealth of Nations
The Commonwealth of Nations, normally referred to as the Commonwealth and formerly known as the British Commonwealth, is an intergovernmental organisation of fifty-four independent member states...

 (due to the transfer of sovereignty from the United Kingdom to the People's Republic of China
People's Republic of China
China , officially the People's Republic of China , is the most populous country in the world, with over 1.3 billion citizens. Located in East Asia, the country covers approximately 9.6 million square kilometres...

), although a Commonwealth country Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka, officially the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka is a country off the southern coast of the Indian subcontinent. Known until 1972 as Ceylon , Sri Lanka is an island surrounded by the Indian Ocean, the Gulf of Mannar and the Palk Strait, and lies in the vicinity of India and the...

 has not been granted scholarships since 1974, even though scholarships were granted to Ceylon. However, with the benefaction from the Lee Hysan
Lee Hysan
Lee Hysan was a renowned land developer and entrepreneur in Hong Kong. The ancestral home of the Lee family was Xinhui, Guangdong, and his father, Lee Leung Yik was an early participant in the U.S. gold rush. Hysan Lee was born in Hawaii and attended primary school in the United States. At age...

 Foundation (described by the Rhodes Trust as "substantial and generous"), the Rhodes Scholarships for Hong Kong were reintroduced in late 2006. Since 1998 Rhodes Scholarships have been granted to Bangladesh
Bangladesh , officially the People's Republic of Bangladesh is a sovereign state located in South Asia. It is bordered by India on all sides except for a small border with Burma to the far southeast and by the Bay of Bengal to the south...


Notable Rhodes Scholars

See also: Rhodes scholars category

Centenary degrees

In recognition of the centenary of the foundation of the Rhodes Trust in 2003, four scholars were awarded honorary degrees
Academic degree
An academic degree is a position and title within a college or university that is usually awarded in recognition of the recipient having either satisfactorily completed a prescribed course of study or having conducted a scholarly endeavour deemed worthy of his or her admission to the degree...

 by the University of Oxford:
  • John Brademas
    John Brademas
    John Brademas is an American politician and educator originally from Indiana. He served as Majority Whip of the United States House of Representatives for the Democratic Party from 1977 to 1981 at the conclusion of a twenty-year career as a member of the United States House of Representatives...

     (Indiana & Brasenose 1950), President of New York University, U.S. Congressman (Indiana), 1959–1981
  • Robert J. L. (Bob) Hawke
    Bob Hawke
    Robert James Lee "Bob" Hawke AC GCL was the 23rd Prime Minister of Australia from March 1983 to December 1991 and therefore longest serving Australian Labor Party Prime Minister....

     (Western Australia & University 1953), Prime Minister of Australia
    Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

    , 1983–1991
  • Rex Nettleford
    Rex Nettleford
    Ralston Milton "Rex" Nettleford, OM ,FIJ, OCC, was a Jamaican scholar, social critic, choreographer, and Vice-Chancellor Emeritus of The University of the West Indies , the leading research university in the Commonwealth Caribbean. Born in Falmouth, Jamaica, Nettleford...

    (Jamaica & Oriel 1957), Vice-Chancellor of the University of the West Indies, author, dance director
  • David R. Woods (Rhodes & University 1963), Vice-Chancellor of Rhodes University

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.