The Student Scholarship Scheme
The HMC Projects scholars who came in September 2016 were selected from fourteen countries - Armenia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Georgia, Moldova, Montenegro, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia and Ukraine.
Boys and girls are selected for scholarships through entry procedures organised in their own countries by nationally accredited agencies and interviews conducted in English in national capitals by members of the HMC Projects, most of whom are serving or former head teachers. Selection is based on results in the entry tests, a strong academic record and good references from the students' own schools, proficiency in written and spoken English and performance at interview. An important criterion is the evident readiness of the student to adapt to a different country and to contribute through his or her own interests and enthusiasm to the life of the British school.
Scholarship winners are then allocated to schools across the United Kingdom, all of which have high standards of academic, sporting and cultural achievement. The schools offer the complete costs of tuition, food and accommodation - and the HMC Projects group adds a modest sum to this for additional expenditure, such as travel in the UK and other activities. The total value of a scholarship is therefore in the region of £30,000 a year.
All the schools in the programme are boarding schools, or schools with boarding houses, so students will become members of a full-time educational community, with members of the teaching staff responsible for their progress and welfare. Each school will appoint a "Contact Person" who will liaise closely with HMC Projects, especially the HMC Projects Student Coordinator, to ensure that students have satisfactory arrangements organised for half-terms and other leave-outs.
The Scholarship programme is open to students who will be at least 16 years old in the September when their year begins. The age limit for the same date is 17 years 6 months. Applications for scholarships must be made through the appropriate national co-ordinators by the announced closing date (which may be slightly different for each country). Selection for full scholarships is restricted to students whose parents' combined income was £30,000 or less in the year prior to the application. Please note, however, that students whose parental income exceeds this sum may apply through the normal application procedures for a Reduced Fee Scholarship.
HMC Projects arranges a three-day Orientation Course in Cambridge for our students on their arrival in September. The HMC Projects Student Coordinator offers pastoral support throughout the year and, in particular, arranges supervised half-term accommodation in the Autumn and Spring terms for those students who request it.
The scholarship is for one year only. Students must not count on a second year in the UK, although over the time the programme has been running many students have been invited back for a second year by their schools. HMC Projects has no formal links with second-year students and can provide no further support, financial or otherwise.
HMC Scholars usually emerge as outstanding members of their schools' Sixth Forms, achieving excellent examination results, and offering a great deal besides. We are proud that former HMC Scholars are already occupying important posts in their own countries.
To meet the administrative costs of the scholarship scheme it is necessary to charge an administrative fee to students selected for scholarships and to schools. For the academic year September 2015 - August 2016 this fee will be £1750 for students who hold a passport from an EEA country and £1250 for those who do not. The reduction in the fee for non-EEA passport holders is intended to help offset the cost of a UKVI Child Student visa which they require for study in the UK and also the newly introduced healthcare surcharge. The fees for the two students selected from the Kirovograd region in Ukraine who are winners of a local competition are paid by a benefactor.
On arrival in the UK, each student on a full scholarship receives a bursary of £300 from HMC Projects. This HMC Projects Bursary is paid directly to the school to help each student take good advantage of cultural and travelling opportunities during his or her stay. Students may apply to the Student Coordinator for discretionary travel grants.
In circumstances of exceptional financial difficulty, and only when appropriate and detailed information is supplied, HMC Projects may reduce the administrative fee and/or award supplementary bursaries.