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Homepage / Cranfield University bursary opportunities – my experience

Cranfield University bursary opportunities – my experience


My name is Paula Gonzalez, and I am currently completing my Thermal Power MSc at Cranfield University. I began my studies in March 2021 – although my journey towards this goal started long before and it was only possible due to a bursary that the University awarded me, so I am going to explain how I faced this process.

Probably, if you find yourself reading this post its because you want to study in Cranfield and still have some doubts regarding the application process, the course or the funding. First, I must say that after Brexit course fees have changed and student visas are required for European and non-European students. In this blog, I will focus on the funding possibilities that Cranfield offers for different students and courses. If you have any doubts regarding the visa application process you can email them to:, they will be happy to help you.

After finishing my bachelor’s in aerospace engineering, I did some research into masters opportunities in different countries. I decided to study Thermal Power MSc at Cranfield University because the course modules are really specific and the University has a good relationship and reputation amongst the aerospace industry.

A good thing about Cranfield is that there is not a deadline for the application, so if you are a really indecisive person like I am, this is perfect! I applied for the October 2020 intake in June. I had problems getting the English certificate and other documents due to the covid lockdown we were facing at that time, so I decided to push the intake to March 2021. Fortunately there are two intakes for this MSc; March and October. The University was really understandable and kind to do so. As you can see applying and getting in, if you have the right knowledge and documents, is quite flexible and easy.

Once I received my conditional offer of study, the second part of the journey was finding a bursary. UK universities are not especially cheap if you compared them with European ones. It was not possible for me to pay for the course without any economic help or loans. I decided to start searching and applying for bursaries, and in case I could not secure one I would have considered a loan (many countries offer loans to their students to study abroad).

To do so, first I checked the Cranfield University fees web page. On this website, you will find many funding opportunities. These opportunities depend upon your course, nationality or gender. At the time, I saw two opportunities for which I fitted the criteria; The Fan Makers Bursary which covers £10,000 of course fees and a Cranfield Scholarship that covered around £5,000 of the fees. I applied for both but since I got a positive answer from the Fan Makers Bursary (lucky me!) I never completed the whole scholarship process that consisted of a technical interview.

In general, the application process consists in submitting a one page CV and motivation letter to the email address indicated on the funding page (this changes among bursaries). I can give you some tips about the CV and the letter; for the CV try to include as much information as possible – I happened to learn afterwards that some extracurricular activities I thought to leave out at the beginning were actually key to being awarded the bursary. While for the letter, write a bit on  your interest in the course and the University and why your background has brought you to this point. The Fan Makers Bursary is awarded to people that cannot pay for the course on their own due to their economic background so you also should include a bit of why you do not have the economic support and why this bursary will help you to study and expand your career.

Once you have completed both documents, you will need to email them to Professor Pericles Pilidis, who is an amazing person and will help you with any further steps you need to follow.

Finally, you just need to wait for the answer. If the answer is positive, congratulations! If not, don’t be discouraged, this bursary is awarded to one person per academic year and there are still many funding possibilities. Just take a step back and start again researching the website and applying to others bursary opportunities and most important, don’t be shy, ask and apply as much as you need to and to whomever you need to. I have met a lot of people studying here thanks to loans or bursaries from Cranfield University, the UK government, their hometown universities or any other government!

To finish this post, I would like to drop here some images from the Thermal Power MSc course and the activities we did during this last year. I hope this post has helped you and encouraged you to apply for funding and study at Cranfield!

Class visits to the Boeing 737

55th Engine Systems Symposium – March 2021 intake

Paula Gonzalez

Written By: Alice Kirkaldy

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