British Deputy High Commissioner hosts reception for returning Chevening and Commonwealth scholars, underlines girls’ education

The British High Commission on Thursday organised a virtual welcome back reception for Pakistani scholars who were awarded the prestigious Chevening and Commonwealth scholarships 2020/21.
British Deputy High Commissioner Alison Blackburne welcomed the Pakistani scholars who have returned from the UK after completing a fully-funded one-year master’s programme. The event was attended by officials of the British High Commission, returning scholars, and Chevening alumni.
The Deputy High Commissioner congratulated scholars on completing their master’s degree and welcomed them into the British alumni family, which has around 10,000 members across Pakistan.
Chevening and Commonwealth scholarships bring together some of the brightest minds from across the world to UK’s renowned universities where they are able to realise their educational aspirations and experience all that the UK has to offer. The scholarship not only brings immediate benefits to individual scholars, but also delivers long-term benefits for both Pakistan and the UK.
British Deputy High Commissioner Alison Blackburne said:

The UK is committed to promoting quality higher education, particularly for women and girls. We have worked hard over the years to encourage more women to apply for Chevening scholarships, and more than half of the scholars last year were women. The scholars returning from their year of study have benefitted from world class education and also had the opportunity to learn more about the UK. They are part of the deep people to people ties which we are celebrating during this year marking 75 years of UK-Pakistan relations.


  1. Chevening is the UK Government’s scholarship programme. Since 1983, around 2,000 Pakistani have been awarded the Chevening Scholarship. The online application window will open next in August, to receive applications for the next academic year 2023-24. To apply and for more information please visit our website
  2. The British High Commission supports inclusion, education and opportunity for all. Over the years, BHC has made efforts to encourage more women to apply, as a result of which female scholars have risen from just 6% in 2013 to around 60% last year. Anyone who has the ambition, curiosity, a clear vision for the future and the ability to achieve goals should apply for a Chevening Scholarship. Selected scholars will join a community of over 50,000 alumni worldwide.
  3. Prominent Chevening female alumni include: the first female judge in Gilgit-Baltistan High Court Amna Zamir Shah; Chairperson Special Talent Exchange Programme (STEP) Abia Akram; senior journalist Fifi Haroon; former members of the National Assembly of Pakistan Yasmeen Rehman, Asiya Nasir and Nafeesa Shah. In 2022, around 3,000 potential candidates applied for the Chevening Scholarship in Pakistan.
  4. Visit for detailed information on the eligibility criteria and scholarship specifications.
  5. The Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in the UK (CSC) provides the main UK government scholarship scheme led by international development objectives. The CSC operates within the framework of the Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship Plan (CSFP), which was established in 1959 by an Act of Parliament.
  6. CSC uses rigorous procedures to ensure that its programmes promote equity and inclusion, reward merit, and deliver widespread access, especially to those from disadvantaged backgrounds.
  7. FCDO is CSC’s lead department and main sponsor, funding awards exclusively for candidates from low and middle income countries.
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