Call for Laidlaw Scholarship project proposals

Project proposals are now being sought from academic staff for the Laidlaw Undergraduate Research and Leadership Scholarship 2021.

Some of the 2020 Laidlaw Scholars cohort at an event in May 2019

Some of the 2020 Laidlaw Scholars cohort when they met in May 2019. November 2020

The programme aims to develop a new generation of leaders who are skilled researchers, embrace data-based decision making, and believe it is a moral imperative to lead with integrity. 

It invests in talented and motivated undergraduate students, giving them the knowledge, skills and experience to become active global citizens and future leaders. 

The programme is now operating at five UK universities, including Leeds, as well as several international institutions – and the network is continuing to expand. 

A total of 26 scholarships are awarded to students at Leeds in the first year of a three-year undergraduate degree programme.

Projects are encouraged to have an international dimension – e.g. a focus on another country or contain a global element. This may include an opportunity to spend all or part of the research period in an overseas university or placement.

The scholarships aim to create an international network of diverse, passionate and ethical leaders who will reinvest their skills, knowledge and experience to help others succeed. 

To date, more than one thousand scholars have completed the programme across the globe. 

Benefits for you

There are many benefits to being a Laidlaw Scholarship research project supervisor, including:

  • an opportunity to support and mentor ambitious and proactive students
  • an opportunity to select the very best undergraduate students, who can make a genuine contribution to your research
  • the chance to accompany your students to a celebration event, which will be organised for all Leeds Laidlaw Scholars
  • the chance for you, your students and the department to be featured in profile-raising opportunities during the programme; and
  • the development of students, including the development of potential Masters and PhD candidates, who can make a lasting contribution to your School’s research output, recruitment and reputation.

‘Incredibly rewarding experience’

Many colleagues have already experienced the considerable benefits from taking part in the project.

Dr Edward Venn, Associate Professor of Music in the School of Music, is among them. He said: “I have found the experience of being a Laidlaw Scholarship supervisor to be incredibly rewarding.

“The projects I proposed were deliberately situated on the margins of my own academic expertise, with the intention of working collaboratively with the Laidlaw Scholar to broaden my own horizons and theirs.

“Every scholar I have worked with has risen majestically to the challenge, and together we have produced new work, generated new ideas and disseminated our findings in international conferences. I wouldn’t have had the capacity or time to achieve this on my own; I am incredibly grateful to the scheme for allowing me, and the scholars I have worked with, to have this opportunity.”

Dr Ian Wood, Senior Lecturer in the School of Biomedical Sciences, is another to sing the scheme’s praises.

He said: “Being a Laidlaw Scholar supervisor, I have interacted with some highly motivated and extremely bright students. They have brought fresh ideas and new perspectives into our research and made remarkable contributions in a very short time.

“Being able to contribute to, and watch, their development, from first year university students to mature, professional graduates with international appeal, has been extremely rewarding.”

Further information

Information drop-in sessions are being held in November.

  • Information Session One│ Thursday 12 November│11-11.30am

Click here to join the meeting

  • Information Session Two│ Tuesday 17 November│1-1.30pm

Click here to join the meeting

Colleagues wishing to submit an application please download and complete the project proposal form and return it to Rebecca Shaw no later than 29 November 2020. 

Guidance notes are available for completing the form, but please contact Rebecca for help or advice who, together with a full list of Faculty representatives, will be able to support you through the process. 

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