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Pestalozzi-UWC Scholarship Programme

Pestalozzi-UWC Scholarship Programme


In 2019 the Pestalozzi International Foundation (PIF) evolved its long standing scholarship programme into a new partnership with UWC International, and together started the Pestalozzi-UWC Scholarship Programme targeting students from underprivileged and marginalised backgrounds who would not have the opportunity to complete their education without scholarship support. As a funding partner, Pestalozzi provides the financial support for the selected students to study the 2 year International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme. The first five Pestalozzi-UWC Scholars entered UWC Atlantic in August 2019.


What sort of candidates are we looking for?


Pestalozzi-UWC Scholars should show high potential (academic and social); that they do not have the opportunity to complete their secondary education without a PIF scholarship; and that they come from a conflict/refugee/in exile/underprivileged background. In conducting selections, the NCs will take into account PIF’s wish to prioritise applicants who are:


● aware of and committed to PIF’s values;

● already engaged in community action or have some level of concern for their community and/or good awareness of issues in their community;

● able and eager to play an ambassadorial role for their communities when abroad; and

● able to think of clear examples of how to give back to UWC/PIF/their home communities in the future.


How the students are selected


UWC has a network of National Committees based in almost every country of the world. We will focus initially on the nine countries where we have historically offered scholarships. Our existing partner organisations in those countries will be encouraged to propose candidates meeting all our selection criteria to the National Committees, however the process will also allow us to consider candidates from a wider range of schools. Pestalozzi staff will have the opportunity to join the National Committee members and observe the selection in each country.


Application Process


The application and selection timeline varies from country to country. Students interested in applying for a scholarship should check the webpage of the respective UWC National Committee website for details.


Selection processes may involve the following:

First Stage

Written Applications

Second Stage

Group-based Activities, Mini-Essay, and Personal Interviews

Third Stage

Group discussion and Personal Interviews



Phase 1 General Application Form

Phase 2 Essays

Phase 3 Community Work

Phase 4 Selections Camp

Phase 5 Interview


Selection Criteria


National Committees (NC) will target suitable candidates during the UWC annual selection process. The successful scholars will:

● normally be aged 16-18 years old;

● show high potential and will otherwise not have the opportunity to complete their secondary education;

● come from a conflict/refugee/underprivileged/in exile background;

● come from a marginalised or deprived community as recognised by the NC, depending on the appropriate country context, and not have the financial means or privileged connections to be able to complete their secondary education. Reference to refugee includes a young person who is an IDP (internally displaced person) within a region of conflict;

● have demonstrated a commitment to their community in line with Pestalozzi’s ethos of education for the head, heart and hands.


All scholarship recipients will be assessed based on the UWC core criteria and relevant NC eligibility criteria. UWC’s core selection criteria are:

1. Intellectual Curiosity and Motivation

2. Active Commitment

3. Social Competence

4. Resilience, Personal Responsibility and Integrity

5. Motivation for UWC


The final decision regarding suitable students will remain with the members of the respective NC selection panel. NCs allocate candidates to the college places they have available at UWC Atlantic College based on several complex factors such as visa/immigration restrictions, best fit, available funding, and student preference.


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