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University of Warwick scholarships boost budding scientists

Forty-Five bright University of Warwick students have won prestigious Eliahou Dangoor Scholarships to support their studies in science, technology, engineering and maths thanks to a generous donation.

The Eliahou Dangoor Scholarships are funded by a leading businessman who fled Baghdad for Britain in the 1960s to escape anti-Semitic persecution.

Dr Naim Dangoor, 97, the head of a successful property company, donated £3 million to set up the Eliahou Dangoor Scholarships – in honour of his late father – at Russell Group and 1994 Group universities.

Dr Dangoor, who received a CBE in the 2012 New Year Honours list, studied engineering in London, where he developed a lifelong commitment to educational causes, in particular STEM.

The scholarships are awarded on merit, and, in some cases, to students who have excelled at schools where high achievers are rare or who have overcome obstacles such as illness and disability. Full-time students receive £1,000 while part-time students get £500.

University of Warwick student Chris Baker said: I am currently in my first year studying for a Masters Degree in Mechanical Engineering and the award of the Dangoor Scholarship enabled me to purchase all of the very expensive text books that are required, without having to worry about the cost involved.

“Having a personal copy of the required texts made a considerable contribution to what has been a very challenging but rewarding year of study.”

Dr Dangoor’s donation has been hailed by Ministers and the Russell Group of leading universities.

Universities and Science Minister David Willetts MP said: “Government matched funding has allowed the Dangoor Scholarships to help even more students. The HEFCE-led review into philanthropy in higher education that I announced last week will explore ways to encourage other philanthropists to follow Dr Dangoor’s example.

“It is vital to the future prospects of young people, and the success of UK business, that we encourage greater numbers to study science, technology, engineering and maths at school and university.

“Dr Dangoor had the life changing experience of studying STEM at a UK university. Now he is making that even more attractive for a new generation of students.”

Dr Wendy Piatt, Director General of the Russell Group of leading universities, added: “Too few students study for STEM degrees at leading universities like [Institution], despite the enormous benefits to students, UK business and wider society. Dr Dangoor’s generosity is helping turn the tide.

“The Eliahou Dangoor Scholarships are a powerful weapon in our armoury as we fight for students to fulfil their potential. Going to university and studying a STEM subject is one of the best investments a bright young person can make.

“The Eliahou Dangoor Scholarships are the perfect example of a philanthropist’s vision and generosity strengthening our universities’ efforts to attract the very best students from all backgrounds to study key subjects like science, engineering and maths.

“We know the Dangoor Scholarships are inspiring students to work that bit harder as they try to win places on some of the country’s most competitive courses.

“Our universities already invest tens of millions each year into scholarships and bursaries, and the Dangoor Scholarships will make STEM subjects particularly enticing for the very best students. Whatever your background, if you’re good enough to get into a Russell Group university, you can afford to go.”

Dr Naim Dangoor CBE, who is funding the Eliahou Dangoor Scholarships, said:"My family and I found refuge in this country when we had to leave Iraq. It is a privilege for me to be in a position to give something back".

For further information, go to http://russellgroup.ac.uk/dangoor. To view the new Dangoor Scholarships video on YouTube, go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GEa3T66oBYk.

Notes to editors

For more information contact Luke Hamer, Assistant Press Officer, University of Warwick, on 02476 575601, or on 07824 541142. Alternatively email l.hamer@warwick.ac.uk

· UK students entering their first year of a STEM degree at Russell Group or 1994 Group institutions should contact their university to apply for an Eliahou Dangoor Scholarship.

  • Russell Group universities are: University of Birmingham; University of Bristol; University of Cambridge; Cardiff University; University of Edinburgh; University of Glasgow; Imperial College London; King’s College London; University of Leeds; University of Liverpool; London School Economics and Political Science; University of Manchester; Newcastle University; University of Nottingham; University of Oxford; Queen’s University Belfast; University of Sheffield; University of Southampton; University College London; and University of Warwick.