How to apply

How to become a UWC Student

Entry to United World Colleges is competitive by selection. In the year of taking up either a non funded, partially funded or fully funded scholarship, students should be in Grade 11 or 12 and aged 16 to 18 years old.

Selection of South African students for entry to the Colleges is the responsibility of the UWC Scholarship Trust of South Africa. The timing of the selection process varies, but it is necessary to apply no later than January in the year of entry. Most Colleges’ academic years commence in August or September; Waterford KaMhlaba follows the Southern Hemisphere pattern of entry in January.

Selection is solely on the basis of merit. Scholarship support means that students can be selected regardless of their financial means. Colleges, National Committees and the International Organisation raise scholarship funds from UWC graduates, friends, foundations, non-governmental organisations, companies, individual benefactors and governments. The number of places available to the UWC Scholarship Trust of South Africa in any year depends on the allocation by each College and the scholarship funds available.

The selection processes include written applications and subsequent regional and national selection days for selected candidates. Successful applicants must have the potential to excel academically, but of equal importance is a commitment to community service and enthusiasm for UWC’s ideals. The selection process looks for students with an open mind and the personal qualities which will enable them to live and study for two years in an intensive multicultural environment.

The language of teaching at the Colleges is English. Students are expected to learn Italian at UWC Adriatic and Spanish at UWC Costa Rica. Applicants should not be discouraged by a lack of knowledge, but an enthusiasm for languages is an advantage for learning the language of instruction and the other languages encountered in daily life.

Application Process:

The United World Colleges is an international organisation dedicated to providing a superior education in an environment which promotes international co-operation and community service. Schools are based in Southern Africa, North America, Europe, Asia, and Latin America.

A limited number of full scholarships include the full cost of 2 years of tuition, accommodation, meals and may include travel/pocket money. Partial scholarships may include up to 75% of school fees where the remainder will have to be funded by the applicant. Applicants must meet the following requirements:

  • South African resident who will be 16 or 17 years old and in Grade 11 (preferably) or 12 in August 2017.
  • Achieve at least a B aggregate in their most recent exams and be in the top 10% of their year.
  • Have an active commitment to achieving positive change towards a more equitable world.
  • Display enthusiasm and the ability to interact with people from different cultures while representing South Africa abroad.

The two year course of study is the International Baccalaureate which is recognised for entry into tertiary institutions around the world, including South Africa.

If you are interested in this opportunity, please carefully read the enclosed application procedure document and provide us with the completed information required to the addresses indicated in the application form.

Selection is solely on the basis of merit. Scholarship support means that students can be selected regardless of their financial means. Colleges, National Committees and the International Organisation raise scholarship funds from UWC graduates, friends, foundations, non-governmental organisations, companies, individual benefactors and governments. The number of places available to the UWC Scholarship Trust of South Africa in any year depends on the allocation by each College and the scholarship funds available. Given the South African socio economic realities, parents may be requested to contribute to scholarships awarded to their child.

We will advertise application details in October and initial applications will close in December 2016. The exact dates and selections timetable will be made available when the applications are released.

Following submission of a second, more detailed application form, applicants selected for interview will be invited to participate in the next stage of our selections process:

Regional Selections

Students who have been selected to attend the regional group activities and interviews will be notified after receipt and assessment of written applications.

The regional selection stage of the application process will see the shortlisted candidates attend an interview session, held regionally in Kwa-Zulu Natal, Western Cape and Gauteng, where the students will participate in both team and individual activities. The purpose of these activities is to gain a better understanding of the candidates and to assess the candidates suitability for the UWC environment.

There is also a formal interview component of this second stage, in which the candidates will sit before a panel of UWC alumni, as well as representatives from external organisations.

National Selection

Following the shortlist from each of the regional selection committees, the candidates are invited to attend a national selections day where the students will participate in both team and individual activities. Following an in depth interview process, candidates are ranked nationally, and a formal offer process begins between the national committee, the candidates and the colleges.