About the Scholarship and the MBA

How much is the Scholarship for and what does it cover?

The Scholarship is intended to cover the Oxford Saïd MBA course and college fees, which in 2019-20 will be £57,200. Additional funds of at least £14,777 are provided as a contribution towards living expenses.  In rare cases partial scholarships may be offered.

How many Skoll Scholarships are offered every year?

The Skoll Centre typically awards up to five Scholarships every year.

Who provides the Skoll Scholarship?

The Skoll Scholarship is funded by a generous grant from the Skoll Foundation, and is administered by the Skoll Centre, which is based at the Saïd Business School, University of Oxford.

Is the MBA a full-time course?

Yes, it is a full-time, one-year course. More information about the MBA programme.

What is expected from scholarship recipients?

Upon being offered a Skoll Scholarship, the candidate will receive a letter of agreement which outlines what is expected during and after the MBA. Examples may include acting as ambassadors for the Skoll Centre, supporting classmates with entrepreneurship projects, recruiting future Skoll Scholars, serving on the Skoll Scholar Alumni Board, and responding to media enquiries amongst others.

If I do not receive a scholarship, can I still focus my MBA on entrepreneurship for social change?

Of course! Typically only five students receive Scholarships, but countless students are interested in pursuing careers that bring together business and social goals. The Skoll Centre offers opportunities to engage with activities for those who are eager to start or grow their own ventures, or work in the growing ecosystem of organisations supporting entrepreneurial ventures/initiatives. The only difference between the Skoll Scholars’ opportunities and other MBA opportunities will be the funding and access to the Skoll Scholar alumni network.


Am I eligible for a Skoll Scholarship?

To be eligible for the Skoll Scholarship, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Have started a new social venture or an initiative within an existing organisation, or pursued positive change as an impact career professional (i.e. someone who has used entrepreneurial approaches to address the same social/environmental issue with a clear core thread that unites his/her work) for preferably 3 years or longer by the time you apply for the MBA;
  • Have demonstrated evidence of personal qualities strongly resonating with entrepreneurial leadership;
  • Have demonstrated how a business education will help further your career goals;
  • Have demonstrated need for financial support.

To further assess if you are a candidate, please see the Eligibility Criteria.

I did not upload my Skoll Scholarship essay questions before submitting my MBA application. May I still apply to the Skoll Scholarship?

If you have already submitted your MBA application but did not submit your Skoll Scholarship essays, contact the admissions & financial aid office. They will send you the essay questions to complete and return to them by email.  You must contact them prior to a deadline of 11 March 2019 to request the essays and must submit your essays to them by a deadline of 18 March 2019.

What do you count as a social venture/initiative?

We define a social venture or initiative as one that combines innovation, resourcefulness, and opportunity to address a critical social and/or environmental challenge. You may have set up a venture as a for-profit or not-for-profit organisation, or you may have led a programme/project within a larger organisation – in either case, your primary objective is to create sustainable systems change, and you have measured your success towards that objective.

What do you count as an “impact career professional”?

An impact career professional is someone who has used entrepreneurial approaches to address the same social or environmental issue and can demonstrate they have a clear core thread that unites his/her work throughout their career. These professionals are able to demonstrate a commitment to social change in a particular area through this thread of work.

Do I need to have 3 years’ experience working on a social venture/initiative or impact career by the time I apply, or by the time I start my MBA?

To be eligible for the Scholarship, we prefer candidates to have a minimum of 3 years’ experience by the time they apply for the MBA.

Do I need to have worked on a single social venture/initiative or impact career for 3 years, or can I have worked on multiple initiatives within that period?

You need to have started and grown a single social venture/initiative or pursued an impact career focusing on one social/environmental issue for a period of at least 3 years. You can, of course, have worked on other social initiatives in addition to this experience.

I’m applying for the 1+1 programme, can I be a Skoll Scholar?

Yes! We welcome applicants who are intending to join the 1+1 programme (which consists of a one year Masters degree followed by an MBA). However, please note the Skoll Scholarship only covers funding for the MBA year of the programme. You may want to consider other scholarships specifically designed for 1+1 students, such as the Pershing Square Scholarship.

Do I have to take the GMAT/GRE to apply for the Skoll Scholarship?

Yes, the candidates are required to take the GMAT/GRE test for entry to Oxford Saïd’s MBA programme.

What GMAT/GRE score do you expect/what is the minimum GMAT/GRE score?

The MBA Admissions Team recommends candidates apply with a GMAT score of 650 or above. The recommendation for GRE scores is a verbal score of 160 and a quantitative score of 161. However, all scores will be considered, and a high score does not guarantee a place, nor does a low score disqualify you. It is important to remember that GMAT/GRE test scores are only one element of your application. Please visit Oxford Saïd’s MBA programme website for more information.

Do I have to take either the IELTS or TOEFL tests?

Candidates whose first language is not English or who have not studied at an English speaking university are required to take either the TOEFL or IELTS tests.

Are there any age restrictions to apply for scholarship?

No, there are no age restrictions to apply for the Scholarship.

Application process

I have been accepted onto the MBA programme but I have not yet received an email with a link to the online application for the Skoll Scholarship. What should I do?

Please check the timelines on the How to Apply page to know when to expect to receive the Skoll Scholarship online application link. If you uploaded your Skoll Scholarship essays to your MBA application and you have been accepted onto the course, then you should receive an email from us on this date. If the date has passed and you haven’t heard from us, please first check your junk mail folder. If you haven’t received anything please contact us.

Can my MBA admission fee be waived even though I have not been granted the Scholarship?

Yes, if we think you could be a strong candidate for the Skoll Scholarship and you have a financial need, we’ll waive it so you can apply. Please see more information here on how to apply for an MBA admission fee waiver.

I have been offered a Skoll Scholarship for this academic year, but due to some personal reasons I can’t attend the MBA programme. Can I take up my scholarship next year?

Yes this is possible, but needs to be discussed on a case-by-case basis.


If you have any further questions which are not addressed here, please contact us at skollscholarship@sbs.ox.ac.uk.