Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program at University of California, Berkeley.
The Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program is developing Africa’s next generation of leaders. The program allows students whose talent and promise exceed their financial resources to complete their education. The Program provides financial, social, and academic support to Scholars. Financial support includes, but is not limited to, tuition fees, accommodation, books, and other scholastic materials. The scope of majors and degrees eligible for the Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program varies from institution to institution.
The University of California, Berkeley has partnered with the Mastercard Foundation in a collaborative, global network of education institutions and non-profit organizations that believe education is a catalyst for social and economic advancement. The Scholars Program aims to develop a cohort of ethical, entrepreneurial, and energetic young leaders who will drive and lead socio-economic transformation in Africa. The Scholars Program is a growing commitment, and, to date, the Program has committed over USD $1.2 billion to supporting the education and leadership development of more than 40,000 young people.
At University of California Berkeley, the Program has provided support to over 120 students from 2012 to 2020, both undergraduate and master’s degree students. Students seeking doctoral degrees are not eligible for this Program. Going forward through 2030, the Program at UC Berkeley will provide support to over 108 master’s degree students. To be considered for the Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program, master’s degree seekers must first apply to the university through the regular admissions process. After students apply for admission to a degree program, the Program will invite them to apply for the Scholarship, if they meet eligibility requirement.
For an undergraduate (bachelor’s) degree, candidates must be 29 years old or under at the time they apply. For a graduate (master’s) degree, candidates must be 35 years old or under at the time they apply.
The main eligibility criteria are:
- Being a citizen of a Sub-Saharan African country: This includes Africans who are refugees or displaced within the African continent. This scholarship is not intended for citizens of North African countries. Those with dual citizenship, asylee, refugee or permanent resident status in the US, Canada, UK or EU are not eligible.
- Having academic talent: All prospective Scholars must first be admitted to a UC Berkeley master’s degree program to be considered for the Scholarship. An important criteria for admission to the University is demonstrated academic excellence.
- Demonstrating leadership potential: The Program seeks those committed to developing the skills and mindsets associated with transformative leadership, i.e, that which engages others in an ethical manner to generate positive and lasting change.
- Coming from a socio-economically disadvantaged background: This Scholarship is designed for those extremely talented individuals who might not otherwise have access to quality further education.
- Having demonstrated the commitment to give back to your community, country, or continent: The search is for well-rounded students who are engaged in activities beyond the classroom. Some may be directly related to the selected field of study, but this may also include other issues (social, economic, political) that you are working on and passionate about. Applicants should elaborate on their achievements both in their application to UC Berkeley, and then later in the Scholarship application.
- Having expressed the desire and intention to return to your home country after completing your studies: The search is for students who are engaged with and passionate about issues affecting their communities, and who will take advantage of their education at UC Berkeley to better equip themselves with the knowledge and training to address these issues upon return. While important work can be done from abroad, the intention of the Program is to enable Scholars to return home, after forming valuable professional connections through internships, academic training and job placements.
Exact figures for the funding provided to beneficiaries of the MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program could not be obtained at the time of publication of this post, however, the scholarship program is fully funded and covers for the students’ travel expenses, cost of tuition, textbooks and printed materials, accommodation and monthly stipends.
At least 3 months before the application deadline, review the requirements for your program. You may apply to only one single degree program or one concurrent degree program per admission term.
Applicants may only apply to one single degree program or one concurrent degree program per admission term.
NOTE: Your online application must be submitted by 8:59 pm Pacific Standard Time on the day of the program’s deadline.
Click here to check the program deadline for your course of choice.
Master’s degree program prospective applicants must first apply to the University through the regular admissions process before they will be considered for the Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program. After the graduate degree program admissions process is underway, the UC Berkeley Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program will invite prospective candidates to apply for the Scholarship.
NOTE: For schools that require application fees as part of the admissions process, the fees will be reimbursed if the student is selected for the Scholars Program.