Public funding for research has been diminishing, especially within the Humanities. Many of today’s graduates have incurred sizeable debts during their undergraduate studies, and find that they will need at least another £20,000 p.a. to support themselves while studying for a higher degree. This has, inevitably, taken a toll on the numbers who can afford to pursue higher degrees and research.
In order to ensure that high calibre graduate students continue to apply here, Trinity needs to increase both the number and size of the scholarships awarded. The University’s matched funding scheme, launched in 2012 on the basis of £2 for every £3 raised, has given an added impetus to Trinity’s fundraising efforts to provide graduate scholarships, both at the Masters and the DPhil level. At the same time, in recognition of the important part that graduates from the USA play in College, we continue to raise money to support Marshall Scholars.
However, there is great competition from other institutions, especially overseas, many of which have more generous financial packages in place. Old Member’ and Friends’ support is therefore essential in ensuring that Trinity and the University do not lose exceptional graduatess. Without it, even the most talented students will not be able to study at a higher level, and some who do so will have no choice but to leave Oxford for better funding opportunities elsewhere.