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Foundation’s new scholarship offers help to students


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Male working-class students at University of Bradford are set to get financial support through a new scholarship backed by a Foundation.

The Howard Opportunities Programme, named after businessman Dr Keith Howard OBE, will give £400 towards living costs each month for four white male students from a working-class background who are already living in the Bradford district. 

The living cost bursary, donated by the Keith Howard Foundation, will support the four scholars from backgrounds that are under-represented in higher education during their time studying at the University of Bradford. The scholarships include a 10 per cent inflationary increase each year and is for full-time home fee paying undergraduates.

White working-class males currently represent around 1.7 per cent of the University of Bradford’s student body, against a higher education sector average of 4.6 per cent. 

The scholarship, which will start in time for the 2024/25 academic year, is in recognition of Dr Howard’s longstanding support for the University of Bradford and the city. 

Dr Howard, who died in 2021, was a philanthropist and businessman and a graduate of the University of Bradford’s School of Management and began his academic career there.

He founded Emerald Publishing in 1967 which now publishes more than 300 active academic journals and 250 books every year. Dr Howard was awarded an OBE in 2011 for services to business, sport and the arts in West Yorkshire.

An exciting future

The Howard Opportunities Programme extends the University of Bradford’s association with the Foundation.

The university already offers the Keith Howard Emerald Scholarship, which runs two full-fee scholarships for black and ethnic minority students who are studying on a full-time MSc programme within the School of Management. 

The University of Bradford has been named the top UK university for improving students’ life chances for three successive years by the English Social Mobility Index in 2022

Professor Shirley Congdon, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Bradford, said: “The Howard Opportunities Programme builds on the university’s existing relationship with the Foundation.

“We are grateful to the Keith Howard Foundation for their continued support.

This new programme will help to change the lives of the male scholars who participate

“The scholarship further emphasises the university’s commitment to social mobility, helping to ensure that everyone who studies at Bradford fulfils their potential.”

The Keith Howard Foundation has granted more than £16 million to good causes since it was set up in 2008.  

Melissa Tomlinson, chair of The Keith Howard Foundation, said: “We’re delighted to support the University of Bradford through the Howard Opportunities Programme.  

“Social mobility is a key component of the work the Foundation supports across Yorkshire. This new scholarship will also help its students on their road to an exciting future. 

“We look forward to following the journeys of the scholars who participate in the programme at the University of Bradford.”

The university will also be working with young people from primary school to post-16 education and beyond, inspiring them to see university as a route to achieving their goals. It will also join forces with district sports teams, including Bradford (Park Avenue), to show that university is an option for them as part of a joint programme with Bradford College.