Lloyds Scholars reap the rewards of volunteer work


Lloyds Scholar, Amy Collins

The Lloyds Scholars Programme (otherwise known as the Lloyds Bursary) is a partnership between leading UK universities and the Lloyds Banking Group, aiming to encourage academically excellent students from low-income families to pursue their studies at top universities. Somewhat unique amongst funding options, the programme involves an annual bursary of £1,000 along with additional financial support based on academic achievement and a component involving volunteer work. Scholars are required to complete one-hundred hours of volunteer work throughout the course of each year, providing rewarding CV-bolstering experience. Amy Collins (pictured) is currently in the first year of a BSc in Economics: “I volunteered from October to March each Wednesday afternoon at Caritas Anchor House, a homeless shelter in East London. I helped residents with CV writing and job applications.”

Alongside that she also volunteered as part of Enactus UCL, a university society. “Throughout the year I was project leader for an initiative partnered with Solace Women’s Aid, a shelter for women who have suffered from domestic abuse. We met with their beneficiaries and gave them workshops on business and employability skills.” These placements don’t just benefit the charities and organisations that the student support, but also the scholars themselves.

“For me,” says first year Psychology student, Nathan Too, “the best thing about volunteering is the ‘hands on’ aspect. It takes you out of study (for a short while) and places you in situations that will require practical application. You use skills and ways of problem-solving that studies may have been developing, but volunteering gives a chance to apply yourself and work for something positive in the real world rather than the bubble of university study.” Nathan volunteers at two tutoring programs called Team Up and Generating Genius. “Commitment and organisation were a challenge to me, and volunteering with a couple of regular programs as well as doing various one off opportunities has helped me to develop my time management skills. Tutoring has particularly developed presentation, communication and leadership skills.”

There are currently 46 Lloyds Bursary holders at UCL volunteering at charities, hospitals and other institutions alongside their study. At just over 2.5 hours per week, it’s a great way to develop professionally and personally while giving back to the local community. 15 new Lloyds scholars will be selected this summer to begin their degrees in September. The deadline for application is Monday 15 June, please follow this link for more information: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/scholarships/undergraduate/Lloyds_Bursary