Abe Bailey Travel Bursary

Closing Date:

Bursary Details

The bursary is available to registered fulltime students of a South African university as well as academic staff members who enjoy junior lecturer status.

The focus of the Abe Bailey Bursary is leadership development and the trustees wish the bursaries to be awarded to students who are academically strong and have shown exceptional qualities of leadership and service, with a good track record - not only on a campus level but also in a wider social context.

As this travel bursary was founded for South African students to visit Britain and meet its Objectives, bursars will be selected on this understanding.

Students apply to their own university in response to an announcement by that university inviting applications. In March each year the Abe Bailey Trust sends the request to each university to publicise the travel bursary and to invite applications. The university fixes the closing date for applications, and states which documents are to be submitted and to whom these should be sent.

Each university establishes a selection committee often including former bursars from that university, receives applications, interviews selected applicants, and then nominates three names in order of preference to the Abe Bailey Trustees.

The date by which university nominations must be received by the Trust is 10th June..

The Trustees select up to 18 travel bursars for the current year. During July the Trust communicates the names of the successful travel bursars to universities who, in turn, inform their applicants. Full details of the travel bursary, including objectives and conditions of the award, are sent to the successful applicants who are required to sign a declaration of acceptance and to return it to the Trust Officer by a date in August.

Any enquiries by applicants about selection and award of the bursary should be addressed to your vice-chancellor's office or to the officer indicated by the V-C’s office, and not to the Trust.

Candidate Requirements

Students shall submit their application to their university no later than the closing date specified by that university when it invites students to apply for the Abe Bailey Travel Bursary. Nominations for the Travel Bursary shall be made to the Trustees of the Abe Bailey Trust after an appropriate selection process by a university committee established for this purpose.

  1. Nominees shall be third year students and above or members of staff of Junior Lecturer status
  2. Nominees must be of South African nationality, have (or able to obtain) a valid South African passport and have no impediments to obtaining a UK visa
  3. Nominees must be aged 25 or less at the start of the Tour. i.e. they must not have had their 26th birthday at the commencement of the Tour
  4. Nominees shall confirm that they accept the Objectives of the Travel Bursary
  5. Applications must contain the following information:
    • Name and address
    • Date of birth and nationality
    • School(s) attended
    • Matric certificate
    • University degree(s)/diploma(s), courses and results
    • Extra-curricular activities at university
    • Details of leadership roles and social and community service
    • A brief statement of the dates and purposes of any previous visits undertaken to the United Kingdom
    • Confirmation of a valid South African passport
    • A recent letter from two referees reporting on the academic, leadership and community service record of the nominee, and suitability in terms of the Objectives of this Travel Bursary.
    • A personal letter of motivation as to why he/she is applying for this Travel Bursary and how he/she will meet its Objectives. These include experiencing and understanding different cultures, meeting different people and broadening the mind on the issues of the day. A proven ability to listen as well as to have the confidence to formulate and express an opinion is an essential prerequisite to selection as an Abe Bailey Travel Bursar.
    • A copy of the identity document
    • Confirmation of Covid Vaccination
  6. Married persons may be nominated but only on the understanding that if granted a Travel Bursary such Bursar shall not be accompanied by his or her spouse.
  7. Travel Bursars must be sufficiently proficient in the English language so as to interact with the other members of the Tour party and to cope with those whom they will meet in the course of the Tour overseas. They should also be physically fit in order to undertake walking tours and cope with the intensive programme of activities.
  8. The Vice-Chancellor, Registrar or other high level representative(s) of the university shall interview the final nominees to ensure that they are aware of their responsibilities towards the Tour, and of the following stipulations:
    1. No Travel Bursar will be allowed to join the Tour late.
    2. All Travel Bursars are expected to participate in the Tour for its full duration and to take part in all the programmed activities.
    3. Applicants who intend to apply for other scholarships, such as the Rhodes Scholarship, should not apply for the Abe Bailey Travel Bursary if it appears that the selection interview dates will clash with the Tour dates.
    4. Bursars will not be allowed to interrupt the Tour.
  9. Travel Bursaries shall be awarded to those nominees from a university selected by the Trustees of the Abe Bailey Trust.
  10. The final decision in any matter pertaining to the Travel Bursaries rests with the Trustees of the Abe Bailey Trust whose decision shall be binding.
  11. The Trustees of the Abe Bailey Trust reserve to themselves the right to vary the foregoing terms and conditions from time to time in their entire discretion.
  12. The liability of the Trustees of the Abe Bailey Trust is limited to the amount of the Travel Bursary to meet the expenditure of the programmed Tour. The Trustees shall not be held responsible for any activities undertaken or arranged by Bursars outside of the organised programme or for any loss or damage suffered in the course of the Tour.


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