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Welcome

The Laidlaw Leadership and Research Programme aims to develop and invest in highly talented and motivated undergraduate students, giving them knowledge, skills and experience to become active global citizens and strong next-generation leaders.

Scholars on the programme will become part of an international network of diverse, passionate and ethical leaders who are encouraged to re-invest their skills through community engagement, helping and supporting others to succeed.
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Uniquely Funded Places

The programme uniquely funds up to 25 places annually, to undergraduate students in Durham each year, supporting a research project and a leadership in action experience. Scholars are supported by a generous stipend of up to £6000 (£3,000 per summer) to enable them to participate in two 6 week summer periods, a bespoke training programme and ethical masterclass. There are 5 core components to the programme:

A Research Project

This takes place over approximately six weeks during summer one. Working with an academic supervisor and/or an experienced research team, scholars develop their abilities in investigative study, analysis, problem-solving and data management.

Leadership Training

Scholars begin their Laidlaw experience with a leadership training retreat. In a group, immersive environment, they discover their own innate leadership preferences, learn core leadership attributes, explore leadership values and develop their leadership skills through exercises and applied learning. Their leadership development continues through the academic year, after their research summer, with guest speakers, coaching and more.

Leadership-in-Action Experience

In their second summer over approximately 6 weeks, scholars put their newly developed leadership knowledge into practice in challenging environments. Scholars will have the opportunity to choose from a variety of options including joining a charity expedition in a developing country, working closely with an NGO or putting their research findings into action by planning and leading their own project that allows them work in a community of need, brings about change and has a societal impact.

Networking

Scholars join a global network of fellow Laidlaw Scholars. This online community provides a dedicated space for scholars to contribute and collaborate. Undergraduate scholars publish their research here, can test their thinking, partner on projects and continue their leadership development. MBA scholars and alumni share career questions, advice and opportunities. Leading academics post their latest papers and thought leadership.

Ethical Masterclass

All Scholars benefit from joining a custom-designed global masterclass in Ethical Leadership, produced by London Business School, that consists of two LBS faculty-led two-hour virtual classes and follow-up consolidation group work facilitated by the Durham Laidlaw Team

University student
Scholars begin their Laidlaw experience with a leadership training retreat. In their second summer, scholars put their newly developed leadership knowledge into practice in challenging environments.

Laidlaw Scholars
Durham University

The Programme

Summer One

All scholars will undertake one research project where they will develop, pursue and report on a research question supported by an academic supervisor. This project will either be defined by the scholar giving them the opportunity to explore a research area which they are passionate about or chosen from a list of pre-defined projects from leading academics within the university.  In addition there will be a small number of opportunities offered through the central foundation working on bespoke projects with carefully curated partners.  These projects will encompass both the summer one research project and summer two Leadership in Action experience.

Summer Two

Scholars will have the opportunity to apply their leadership skills in challenging international environments, through an immersive bespoke leadership in action 6 week experience. Expanding their cultural awareness, Scholars will work on international projects that will benefit wider communities in finding solutions and tackling real problems. Through this action based learning, scholars will be encouraged to take on new challenges and further develop such skills as; strategy, planning, execution, communication, influencing, teamwork, resilience and being a global citizen.

  • Eligibility and Applications

    All undergraduate students in year one of a three-year degree programme, or year one or two of a four-year degree programme at the time of application are eligible to apply.
    Male and Female student looking through a Laidlaw frame
  • Durham Laidlaw Scholar Organisation (DSLO)

    The Durham Laidlaw Scholars’ Organisation (DLSO), otherwise known as Laidlaw Society, is the collective organisation for Laidlaw Scholars at Durham University.
    Large group of Laidlaw Scholars

Eligibility and Applications

All undergraduate students in year one of a three-year degree programme, or year one or two of a four-year degree programme at the time of application are eligible to apply.
Male and Female student looking through a Laidlaw frame

Durham Laidlaw Scholar Organisation (DSLO)

The Durham Laidlaw Scholars’ Organisation (DLSO), otherwise known as Laidlaw Society, is the collective organisation for Laidlaw Scholars at Durham University.
Large group of Laidlaw Scholars

  • The Laidlaw Foundation

    We aim to create an international network of diverse, passionate and ethical leaders who will reinvest their skills, knowledge and experience to help others succeed.

    Three students holding Laidlaw messages
  • The Laidlaw Scholars Network

    Find a supervisor, connect with peers, network with alumni and engage with the Laidlaw community.

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The Laidlaw Foundation

We aim to create an international network of diverse, passionate and ethical leaders who will reinvest their skills, knowledge and experience to help others succeed.

Three students holding Laidlaw messages

The Laidlaw Scholars Network

Find a supervisor, connect with peers, network with alumni and engage with the Laidlaw community.

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Options for Summer Two


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These options may need to be adjusted to adapt to remote working restrictions:

  • Leadership expedition – in-field voluntary work/expedition with a mixed team of scholars from partnering universities. Past expeditions have included working with local educators in Fiji through the Think Pacific scheme and supporting community building and education projects.
  • Working with a social enterprise, NGO or charity – there will be a number of central foundation partnering projects to apply to or alternatively you can propose your own (discussed and agreed by central university programme team)
  • In-field application of a summer 1 research project - putting their research findings into action with the aim of creating positive change in society.

All experiences will have clear goals and outputs specified.  They must also adhere to the Foundation LiA criteria that allows the scholar to:

  • Work within communities in need.
  • Do something which makes the world a (sustainably) better place.
  • Develop and demonstrate their leadership skills, attributes and Laidlaw values.
  • Learn through service overseas (exemptions may apply in special circumstances).

All aspects of the leadership training programme are compulsory – and initially scholars will need to commit to being available for a 2 day residential training programme delivered before their first summer research period, taking place mid- June .

Laidlaw Scholars will also be representing both Durham University and the Laidlaw Foundation and will be expected to take on ambassadorial duties as part of their commitment. These include supporting and mentoring younger scholars or perhaps delivering a talk at a conference/ event and will also include helping with promotion of the programme to future cohorts.

University student
The scholars are supported by a generous stipend of up to £6000 (£3,000 per summer) to enable you to participate in two 6 week summer periods in both research and leadership activities.

Laidlaw Scholars
Durham University

Become a Laidlaw Undergraduate Research and Leadership Scholar

Find out more about Laidlaw Scholars in the following video.
 
 

 

 

Applications

Applications for the Laidlaw Scholars programme at Durham open in November each year with a deadline for submission in January 2022. Durham University undergraduate students must be in their first year of a three-year degree or in the first or second year of a four-year degree in order to apply for the Laidlaw Scholarship. There are no restrictions on discipline, division, nationality or fee status.

How to Apply

There are no restrictions on discipline/department, college, nationality or fee status (the programme is not open to visiting students).
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Contact Us

If you would like to find out more about the programme, you can email current Scholars or a member of the Laidlaw team.
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Watch Our Video

For more information please watch our short information video