Clare College Cambridge

Current Awards and Grants

Thirkill Awards (undergraduates only)

Normally up to eight awards per year are awarded, worth between £200 and £300, depending on the number of awards.  Thirkill Awards are awarded on the recommendation of the Master and Tutors, to graduating students who have played a prominent part in the life of the college.  The awards are for travel and do not have to be academic related.

Hardship Funds (all Members)

`Hardship' is difficult to define in a precise way, but for the purposes of assessing eligibility for financial help it is taken to mean: 'being unable to meet the reasonable (in the College's view) costs of accommodation, maintenance, study, and living expenses, whilst having drawn fully on all normally available resources, and not having incurred any foreseeable unreasonable expenditure'. It usually involves some unexpected change of circumstances and/or difficulties at home.

If you wish to be considered for a hardship grant, you should discuss the matter with your Tutor in the first instance, who may then ask you to contact the Financial Tutor. The Financial Tutor will then meet with you to discuss your finances and may ask to see documentary evidence, such as bank statements or bills, in support of your case.

If you are a graduate, your tutor may advise you to apply for the Student Registry scheme of Hardship Awards (which includes the Lundgren Research Awards). This scheme aims to support students who have shown a high aptitude for research but are experiencing financial hardship as a result of unexpected changes in their financial circumstances. The awards are intended to support those students who would otherwise be unable to complete their research.

Undergraduate Bursaries

The College is able to offer a number of Bursaries. These are awarded to students from lower income families, normally for the duration of their undergraduate degree. Usually these College Bursaries are held in conjunction with a Cambridge Bursary. (The Cambridge Bursary Scheme is administered on behalf of the University and Colleges by the Newton Trust.) Information about how to apply on-line for both a College and a Cambridge Bursary is given to all UK freshers upon arrival.

Access to Learning Funds (all Members)

These funds are available to 'Home' students through the University to help those who would not be able to complete their studies in Cambridge without additional financial resources. Help through Access Funds tends to concentrate on mature students, disabled students, and students with children. The Awards Committee insist that all applicants have taken out the maximum student loans and awards available to them. They also assume that the student has a certain amount available to them from other sources.

Undergraduate Travel and Research Grant

Thanks to the generosity of alumni and benefactors, the College is able to make a Travel and Research Grant available to all undergraduates who are registered, full-time members of Clare College, and who are enrolled on a course of at least three years’ duration. Each student who fulfils these criteria is allocated £300 at the beginning of his or her degree and may use it for travel that either relates to that student’s course of study, or which might be regarded as generally beneficial to them. The £300 may be used to fund one trip, or else a series of smaller trips. Application forms are available here and should be submitted to the Tutorial Office.

Postgraduate Research and Expenses Grant

Up to £400 (over the three-year period) is available to help PhD students attend conferences and travel in relation to their research. Up to £150 is available to students on a one-year M. Phil course.  A letter from your supervisor and receipts or proof of costs must support the application.

The student's Department is expected to contribute on a similar or greater scale (if not, the supervisor should explain why in his/her letter) you are also expected to have sought funding from your Grant Giving Body. The activity must be closely linked to your research activities. If the application contains anything unusual, it is usually necessary to discuss it with the Graduate Tutor to avoid it being rejected out of hand by the arbitrating panel. Grants are not made for software, which can however be claimed against the Graduate student Book Grant.  Application form available Here .

Postgraduate Book Grant

Each year you may claim a partial refund of money spent on books, or on computer software or audio-visual source material. To be eligible for a refund, such purchases must be directly relevant to your course. The current scale of refund per academic year - credited against your College Bill - is: £50 on purchases amounting to between £65 and £90; £70 on purchases amounting to more than £90, and about 50% of any purchase over £40.  Do please hang on to any receipts for books or learning materials you may have purchased. Application form Here

Sports Award (all Members)

Members of the College are eligible to apply for assistance towards the cost of playing sport for the University.  Application available here.

Subsidy for use of University Gym (all Members)

The college will part-subsidise termly (Easter), bi-termly (Lent and Easter) or annual membership of University Sport (which includes unlimited use of the University Gym). To claim, submit receipts for membership fees paid to the Bursary early in Easter Term, before the deadline of noon on the first Friday of Easter Full Term. The amount reimbursed will depend on demand, but it is hoped will be of the order of 50%.

Postgraduate Studentships and Fellowships

From time to time the College advertises special Graduate Studentships and Fellowships for open competition. This information can be found here


Undergraduate students gaining a First in their examinations will receive £100, either as a College Prize or as a Named Prize.

Beatson Awards for clinical medical students

Clinical medical students may apply for reimbursement of additional expenses incurred in relation to medical electives, conference attendance, or research projects. Details of how to apply are available here.

Clare-Yale Fellowship Fund (all Members)

The Clare–Yale Fellowship Fund was established in 2007 as part of the celebrations to mark the centenary of Paul Mellon’s birth and the 75th anniversary of the Mellon Fellowships between Clare and Yale. The Fund was made possible by donations from former Mellon Fellows. Its purpose is to complement the Mellon Fellowships and strengthen the ties between Clare and Yale by providing partial support to students from Clare wishing to undertake a period of study at Yale. Further details can be found here

Kirke-Greene African Travel Fund (all Members)

Travel funds are available to Clare students who wish to pursue research in sub-Saharan Africa as part of an undergraduate or postgraduate degree.  The award is open to those studying History, Social & Political Science, International Relations and Anthropology. 

Language Centre Courses (all Members)

Financial support is available to students taking Language Centre courses not paid for by their Faculty or Department. Half the cost of the course will be reimbursed when the appropriate certificate of completion in May/June is submitted to the Bursary. Please email with your receipt and certificate.

Teach First (all Members)

Some awards are available for students accepted onto the Teach First scheme. Contact the Financial Tutor, Prof Parker, for more information.

Cycle Helmet/Light Subsidies (all Members)

In order to encourage the use of cycle helmets and lights, the College has a subsidy scheme and allows £20 towards the cost of a helmet and £10 towards the cost of lights. To claim for either, or both of these, you must complete this form and send it from your CRSID email to with your receipt/s within 2 months of your purchase (receipts must state that it is for lights and/or helmets). There will only be one grant per student, except in the case of an accident that results in the need for a replacement helmet and/or lights.

Undergraduate Summer Placements

Clare College has two prestigious summer placement schemes at leading international institutions for undergraduate students interested in medical, veterinary and scientific research. These schemes are listed here in the order in which they were founded. Further information on each scheme, along with details of the application process are available here.

Support for students with a disability (all Members)

The University Disability Resource Centre gives disabled students every assistance to obtain funding.  Further detailed information can be found here.