Services for Students

The Witty Entrepreneurial Scholarship Programme

Guidance Notes 2024/25

Before completing the application form please read these guidance notes. 

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Applications will close on Friday 5th May 2024

If you require these notes and/or the application form in an alternative format (e.g. Braille, large font) please call the Funding and Financial Support team on 0115 823 2071 or email us at bursaries@nottingham.ac.uk.  

Scholarship Information: 

Sir Andrew Witty, former Chancellor of the University of Nottingham and his family, generously established this major new scholarship programme for undergraduate students in 2017. Sir Andrew graduated from the University of Nottingham in 1985 with a joint Honours BA in Economics and was the CEO of GlaxoSmithKline from 2008.  

This generous gift has established an innovative programme of undergraduate scholarships for promising student entrepreneurs from low-income backgrounds who have at least two full years of  study left*, including but not exclusively:  

  • £750 per annum core living cost support  

  • £1,500 funding to support venture start-up costs or internships  

  • Support with paid internships within student start-up businesses within the Ingenuity Lab or a local small business  

  • Access to an invaluable resource of entrepreneurship education and mentor support  

  • The opportunity to apply for competitive funds to help with business start-up costs or to pursue international opportunities  

The non-financial elements of the programme will be tailored to individual scholars as their aspirations and capabilities evolve throughout their studies. These scholarships therefore represents a unique opportunity for students wishing to pursue an entrepreneurial career.  

*Subject to satisfactory progression, demonstration of entrepreneurial aptitude, and an ongoing assessment of suitability for the programme  

Who can apply for this scheme?  

For this scheme you must meet the following criteria. You must:  

  • Be enrolled with at least two full years left of an undergraduate degree at the University of Nottingham (UK Campus).  

  • Have Home funding status (see definition below)  

  • Have a 2023/24 Household Income of between £0-£35,000, as assessed by Student Finance (see definition below)  

  • Be able to demonstrate an interest and commitment to an entrepreneurial career (see “What should I include in my supporting statement?” below).  

  • Commit to attending regular mentoring meetings; sign up to entrepreneurship modules; attend seminars and events to support entrepreneurial education and employability.  

How much funding will I receive?  

You will receive a Core Living Costs award of £750 per year, subject to satisfactory progression. There will also be an Intern/Start-up fund, an Advantage Fund and a Competition Fund available on a competitive basis.  

How will any award be paid?  

Upon acceptance on to the scheme a Core Living costs award of £750 will be paid to you during term 2 following your initial engagement with the programme, directly to your bank account. More details of payment arrangements will be confirmed to you at this time. Further awards/payments will be subject to your individual circumstances and on satisfactory progression to the next year of the scheme.  

What should I include in my Supporting Statement?  

Please explain what entrepreneurship means to you and how you might use entrepreneurial skills to realise your career ambitions. This could be through creating your own business or joining an existing business and helping to encourage innovation.  

It would be helpful to outline what excites you about entrepreneurship. Is it the opportunity to address social change or perhaps to pioneer new technologies?  

We would like to know what impact the funding and support will have on helping you realise your future entrepreneurial and career ambitions.  

Finally, any examples of how you have been entrepreneurial or innovative in the past would help support your case.  

The key word here is YOU, we want to know about your interest and any experience or ambition you may have to become more entrepreneurial and innovative.  

What are entrepreneurship modules and how do I apply?  

Entrepreneurship modules are provided by the Haydn Green Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship. As part of the scholarship scheme you are expected to take at least one 10 credit module in each year of the programme that provides the learning to support your career aspirations. For instance if you wish to start your own business then you would attend the business start-up events in the Ingenuity lab in year one, take the Entrepreneurship and Business module in year 2 and the New Venture Creation module in year 3. If you were aiming to innovate within an existing business then you would attend the innovation events in the Ingenuity lab in year one, take the Corporate Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management Module in year 2 and the Exploring Perspectives in Entrepreneurship in year 3. A full list of modules and events can be found at www.nottingham.ac.uk/enterprise.  

When is the closing date and when will I know if I’ve been successful?  

Applications will close at midnight Sunday 5th May 2024. Applications will be looked at once the closing date has passed and all applicants will be informed by email of the outcome of their application within 4 weeks of the closing date. All successful applicants will be asked to attend an induction event at the start of autumn term.  

What is “Household Income” (Question 9)?  

The “Household Income” figure used by the University in relation to award eligibility is the figure calculated by Student Finance when you apply for your government support funding (Student Loans). It is the gross income of all those in your household (e.g. your parent/s or your partner) during the tax year 21-22, for the 23/24 academic year, before tax and national insurance deductions but minus a few allowable deductions. More information is available from www.gov.uk/studentfinance.  

We will check the household income figure you provide on your application form against that supplied by Student Finance to ensure it doesn't exceed the £35,000 eligibility threshold. Please note that a Witty Scholarship is conditional on you meeting the income threshold criteria.  

What is a “Home Student” (Question 8)?  

Your student finance company (i.e. Student Finance England, Wales, Northern Ireland or the SAAS) will decide your residency status. To be classed as a ‘Home’ student you must have been ordinarily resident in the UK for the three year period prior to the start of your course. Students granted refugee status and European migrant workers may also be eligible. If you are unsure of your status contact the student finance company for further information.  

How to appeal  

If you are unhappy with the outcome of your application, you should initially contact the Funding & Financial Support team to discuss your concerns (see contact details above). If after an explanation of the assessment you believe there has been an error or procedural inconsistency and you wish to appeal you should email the Funding Manager detailing the basis of your appeal. Please send your email to john.hudson@nottingham.ac.uk and copy in financialsupport@nottingham.ac.uk.

Appeals must be lodged within 2 weeks of the date of the email notifying you of the initial outcome. You will be contacted within 7 working days of receipt of the appeal with confirmation of the outcome of the appeal. Please note that the Funding & Financial Support Management’s decision on appeals is final.  

Details about the Funding & Financial Support appeal process can be requested from the team at any point and this does not affect your right to raise an official complaint. Further details can also be found at:  

https://www.nottingham.ac.uk/studentservices/support/financialsupport/Appeals.aspx  

Data Protection and EDI

Data protection and confidentiality

All information and supporting documentation supplied by you with this application will be used for the sole purpose of assessing your application. Your application and some related information, including the outcome of the application, will be held and maintained in accordance with the provisions of General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The data will not be passed to any other third party without your consent, except when the University is required to do so by law. For our full Data Protection and Confidentiality Statement, please see: https://www.nottingham.ac.uk/studentservices/support/finacialsupport/date-protection.aspx

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

The University of Nottingham is focused on embedding equality, diversity, and inclusion in all that we do. As part of this, we seek to reward and recognise our diverse staff and student population, and therefore encourage applications from all communities, particularly those with protected characteristics under the Equality Act 2010. For more information please see our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion web pages: https://www.nottingham.ac.uk/edi/equality-diversity-and-inclusion.aspx

If you have any questions about completing the application form or want more information about any area of student support funding then please contact us. We can provide information and advice on all aspects of student finance including Government and University student support funds.  

Funding and Financial Support team contact details:  

Email: financialsupport@nottingham.ac.uk  

Website: www.nottingham.ac.uk/financialsupport  

You can also find information on the comprehensive range of support services offered by the University of Nottingham at www.nottingham.ac.uk/studentservices  

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