Sporting Excellence Scholarships for water-based sports

What are Sporting Excellence Scholarships?

If you are a University of Plymouth student studying a full-time degree level course whilst competing at an international level in a water based sport, such as swimming or sailing, you may be eligible to apply for one of our Sporting Excellence Scholarships. There are five awards of £800 available per scholar per year.

Applicants must meet our shortlisting criteria, and successful scholars are determined by a shortlisting panel based on the information and evidence provided in written applications. Students must re-apply annually.

If you are an international student who requires a Tier 4 visa please read our information regarding working restrictions on a Tier 4 visa. It is not usually possible for Tier 4 visa holders to apply for these scholarships due to these restrictions.

Shortlisting criteria

  • A world/international ranking (county rankings do not apply).
  • Selected by the respective National Governing Body to represent their country e.g. GB training camps.
  • Podium potential athletes or on route to be.
  • Have the ability to compete at the top competitive level e.g. Olympic or Paralympic Games.
  • Exceptional athlete that have already represented their country at an international level.
  • Supporting letter from Governing body.

How to apply

Our Sporting Excellence Scholarships inspire and enable you to achieve your sporting goals alongside your academic studies.

To apply for a Sporting Excellence Scholarship, please complete the application form, submitting with a sports portfolio (including media coverage and past achievements) plus a letter of support from your National Governing Body to:

Sporting Excellence Scholarships,
External Relations,
Hepworth House,
University of Plymouth,
Drake Circus, 

Sporting Excellence Scholarship application form


Applications for the 2020/2021 round of Sporting Excellence Scholarships are now closed. The successful applicants will be advised shortly and award of funds made in November 2020.

To align with the majority of sporting events, which take place over the summer months, the next round of applications for the 2021/2022 financial year will open on 2 August 2021 with a deadline of 31 August 2021. Award of funds will then be made in November 2021.

Further information

Telephone: +44 1752 588000

Great Britain’s artistic swimmers, including Cerys Hughes (top left), win another silver medal at the FINA World Series in Paris 2020

“I chose to study Psychology at Plymouth during my time at sixth form as this was an area that I have always been interested in along with the fact that the knowledge I am gaining can be applied to my sport of synchronised swimming. The opportunity to study for a degree which could help me improve my sports performance both in and out of the pool, as well as being able to apply this in training and competition both for the University and the country made Plymouth the perfect place for me to carry out my studies.”

Sporting Excellence Scholar: Cerys Hughes