Call for PhD Scholarship Applications

Aziz Foundation PhD Scholarships:
Developing Academics from British Muslim Communities

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The Aziz Foundation is an independent grant-making body dedicated to supporting the most disadvantaged communities in Britain. It strives to do this through supporting community empowerment and leadership development in these communities, and greater public engagement by them in wider society. The Foundation is offering three PhD scholarships per annum starting from the 2017-18 academic year.

The scholarships offer a unique opportunity for exceptional students active in British Muslim communities and interested in how their needs may be met through research and academic work. The purpose of the scholarships is to support individuals who have the intellect and determination to offer significant insights and thinking in areas where disadvantaged British Muslim communities most need them. Priority for these scholarships will be given to research which helps foster an understanding of the challenges and opportunities facing British Muslims through either:

• the application of the Maqasid Al-Shariah to a point of Islamic theology, ethics or law as to be understood by British Muslims.

• a deeper understanding of a philosophical, political, legal, economic, educational, social or cultural problem facing British Muslims, particularly where this may be addressed through public policy, or

• the quantitative analysis of large data sets that help develop more nuanced narratives on British Muslims.

The Foundation is keen, however, to support students who would like to pursue a career in research and academia not just to benefit Muslims, but all communities, in pursuit of their specific and common goals that will help create a more cohesive Britain.

The successful applicants will be selected through their application to and interview by the Aziz Foundation directly. The scholarships will cover tuition and living expenses for three years, up to a maximum of £20,000 in total per year. The scholarships are funded through zakat contributions. The selected individuals will also be supported through a personal comprehensive development scheme offering pastoral, professional and career advice and development during and after their course of study.

Doctoral study is challenging, but hugely rewarding. If you possess the ability and the motivation to be admitted to a Russell Group institution, you can expect exhilarating intellectual satisfaction, being taught by and working with academics who are leaders in their fields. You will also be supported by the Aziz Foundation to develop your knowledge, skills and ideas to enable you to play a part in leading communities towards greater integration in wider British society. The selected individuals will become alumni of their institutions and the Aziz Foundation’s Leadership Development Programme with their powerful networks of friendships and contacts, and their professional careers advisory services.

Criteria

Applicants should meet all the following requirements:
• Have or expect to have an offer for PhD study from a Russell Group university
• Provide a high-quality proposal demonstrating originality, importance and feasibility
• Be active within their local and/or faith communities and demonstrate a desire to develop intellectual skills within a multi-faith/secular environment
• Be able to demonstrate long-term commitment to community/societal development and good relations work
• Be eligible for Home/EU fee status at their university

Subject to satisfactory progress, the scholarships will be awarded for a maximum of three years. Only applications to Year 1 of full-time PhD programmes of study will be considered. The successful candidates will be expected to contribute towards the Aziz Foundation Leadership Development Programme.

Application Process

If you meet the above criteria and would like to apply for these scholarships, please:

Step 1 – Apply to a Russell Group Institution

Apply for admission for a PhD place at relevant Russell Group institutions.

Step 2 – Apply for a PhD Scholarship

Once you have an offer from a relevant institution, apply for a PhD scholarship. This will require you to submit:

1. A short covering letter setting out the purpose of your application;

2. A statement of no more than 1,000 words setting out how you meet the criteria above, the focus of your intended PhD study, why you think this is important for British Muslims, and how you hope to use this scholarship opportunity for your future work;

3. A tailored CV detailing your qualifications and work history (no longer than 2 pages);

4. An acceptance letter for PhD study from a Russell Group university; and

5. Two references – one in relation to your academic ability, and the other in relation to your engagement in community work.

Your scholarship application should be sent to:
The Scholarships Project
Aziz Foundation
16 Babmaes Street
London
SW1Y 6HD

or emailed to [email protected] by 14th May 2017.

Step 3 – Attend the Interview

If called, please attend the interview with the Aziz Foundation. Travel expenses will be reimbursed on production of receipts. Interviews will normally be held in June 2017.

Please note that we will only contact you if you have been successful for short-listing. If you do not hear from us, then please assume that in this instance your application has not been successful.

The Aziz Foundation welcomes informal enquiries from candidates considering an application. Enquiries should be made to [email protected].