Saïd Business School, University of Oxford has unveiled plans to launch its new ‘Oxford Black Leaders Scholarships’. They are aimed at Black and Mixed-Black prospective MBA students from the UK and North America.
The scholarships are intended to support exceptional future leaders who will enhance the diversity of the MBA class and the wider School and will go on to be outstanding leaders within their sectors.
Black leaders and ethnic minority leaders have historically been underrepresented in business, especially at leadership levels. In 2022, just six of the Fortune 500 Companies were headed by Black CEOs.
Reflecting on the news, Dean Soumitra Dutta said:
‘I’m proud to announce this new scholarship during Black History Month, which is a time to celebrate black culture and promote equality. Both as individuals and organisations, we all become stronger as we embrace inclusivity and diversity.
It is a sad fact that businesses are not nearly as diverse or representative as they should be. Through the Black Leaders Scholarship, Oxford Saïd is helping to change this. In doing so, we will empower the next generation of Black business leaders and make our School even more inclusive as a result.’
There will be three scholarships [FH1] awarded in total, with two from the UK and one from the US or Canada. The first intake will be the 2023-2024 class.
Candidates will be selected on account of their academic excellence and leadership potential and will receive financial assistance of up to £30,000 each.
Laura Jones, Head of Diversity, and Inclusion at Saïd Business School, said:
‘I am delighted that Oxford Said is making such a strong commitment to transforming the future representation of exceptional Black leaders. Black leaders are significantly under-represented at leadership level, I feel very proud that Oxford Said will contribute to advancing equity and diversity through the provision of our Black Leaders Scholarships.’
The Reaching Out Fellowships have been successful in increasing visibility and representation among the LGBTQ+ community. The Forté Fellowships for Women and The Laidlaw Scholarships have been key to boosting female engagement at the school, with this year setting a new record for the highest percentage of women studying on the MBA.