Oxford Crankstart Scholars
Oxford Crankstart Scholars

Student Spotlight: Meet an Oxford Crankstart Scholar

The Crankstart Scholarship provides a programme of enhanced support to UK residents from lower-income households who are studying for their first undergraduate degree. Eligible new students with a household income of £27,500 per year or less will receive generous bursary support, access to funded internships, volunteering opportunities and social and community building events.

My name is Ellen and I’m a second year English student at Keble College, Oxford. I’ve been in the position you are in now as offer holders, unsure what to expect at University, and can say I’ve really loved my time at Oxford so far.

Once I got to Oxford, I was so happy I’d gone through with the admissions process. For me, the intense feeling of meeting new people and having loads of new experiences really felt exciting. It also didn’t take too long to start relaxing into the new world as I made friends I could have a quiet cuppa with. Another thing that helped me chill was the Crankstart fund. This gave me lots of spending money that I wouldn’t have had otherwise, and so I could do everything my friends were doing. The scholarship was automatically given to me so I just had to accept it.

I’ve done a few kinds of volunteering, which we do as part of the scholarship. I’ve had total choice over what I do and the team have been so useful in helping me find something I like. Tutoring has been a really rewarding way to volunteer. Being part of a charity’s social media team was also really fun, and even a nice little CV booster! As well as being able to help other people with volunteering, the Crankstart team have been so useful in securing me internships and work experience. I had no idea anybody would help me with this at uni, but just by pinging a few tentative emails to them, they’ve always jumped to help me out!

So overall, I’ve really loved my time at uni so far. I still have moments where the whole Oxford experience all just feels totally crazy, but Crankstart has stopped me from feeling out of place. The Scholarship has popped up to help at unexpected points, with extra spending money, help with extra curriculars, and the feeling of solidarity with other students from similar backgrounds.

Ellen Hendry

To find out more about funding support at Oxford, visit our Fees and Funding page.