F1 to fund engineering degree at Cambridge University for underrepresented youngster

Cambridge University. Image by Katz Gohsend from Pixabay

Formula One (F1) is to fully fund an undergraduate from an underrepresented background to study for an engineering degree at the University of Cambridge.

The scholarship is part of F1’s plans to increase diversity and inclusion in the sport, an agenda championed by British racing driver Sir Lewis Hamilton. Sir Lewis has been working with the sport’s teams and governing bodies to raise awareness about the lack of black drivers in F1.

Administered by the Cambridge Trust, the scholarship will cover the student’s tuition fees, as well as a living stipend for the duration of the four-year course. The scheme is operating at six universities in total and will fund 10 students across those institutions. All of the sponsored students will be from underrepresented groups, including ethnic minorities, women and those from lower socio-economic backgrounds.

Professor Richard Prager, the Head of the University of Cambridge’s Engineering Department, said the university is “incredibly grateful” to Formula 1 for this “generous scholarship”. A personal contribution of around £730,000 from F1’s non- executive chairman, Chase Carey, will help fund the scholarships.

The scholars will be part of the September/October 2021 intake of undergraduate courses in the UK and Masters (postgraduate) in Italy. All 10 F1 teams have committed to provide work experience opportunities to a scholar during their studies.

As well as the scholarship programme, F1 is also launching an apprentice programme and internship programme for underrepresented groups.

Stefano Domenicali, President and CEO of Formula 1 said: "Formula 1 is a global sport with fans across the world. We want to be as diverse as our fan base and that is why we are taking action to ensure talented people from underrepresented groups have the best opportunities to get into, and build, a fantastic career in this amazing sport."

Alongside Cambridge University, F1 is partnering with Coventry, Manchester Metropolitan, MUNER – Motorvehicle University of Emilia-Romagna (Italy), Oxford, and Strathclyde.

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