The David and Elaine Potter Foundation has established a Fellowship Programme to support excellent South African students who intend to contribute to civil society in South Africa, by leveraging their educational advantage in any discipline. A strong civil society holds national and local government accountable; enhances democratic institutions and the quality of life of its citizens and helps strengthen and sustain economic, civil and legal rights. Any field of study will be considered, whether you are an engineer, an economist, a political scientist or a lawyer. Thoughtful men and women, who are excited by the prospect of helping to lead South Africa into an ever more successful future are invited to apply for these Fellowships.

Potter FoundationApplications are invited from suitable candidates who intend to commence with full-time Master’s and Doctoral studies at the University of Cape Town in 2012. (Note: Only applications from candidates who are studying outside of the Western Cape will be considered in the 2nd years of Masters or Doctoral study – and for the 3rd year of Doctoral study).

The Fellowships will be awarded on the basis of academic excellence. The tenure of the award will be for the first and second years of the Master’s degree and for the first, second and third years of the Doctoral degree. Renewal of awards is not guaranteed and all renewals will be contingent on the individual student’s satisfactory academic progress and on the availability of funds. Successful candidates are expected to complete their degrees within the above time frames.


  • Doctoral Fellowship Value – R130,000
  • Master's Fellowship Value – R90,000 (1st year) and R95,000 (second year)

Applicants for the David & Elaine Fellowship Programme will be required to:

  • write a letter of application. The letter must provide a summary of the applicant’s intended role in civil society and must briefly describe the applicant’s involvement in the community to date. It is important to note that letters of application submitted without this information will not be considered;
  • attach a full curriculum vitae which elaborates on past and current community involvement and leadership roles;
  • attach certified copies of all academic transcripts. Please do not attach copies of certificates;
  • provide letters of reference from TWO ACADEMICS who have taught and/or supervised the applicant at university. These references should be attached to the application in sealed envelopes. Please do not send references from previous employers or character references; provide proof that they are or will be accepted by the relevant academic department at UCT for the 2012 academic year;
  • submit an essay of NO MORE THAN 2,000 words on their intended role in civil society. Applicants are required to use the passage in the text-box above, entitled ‘PURPOSE’, as a guide for the content of the essay;
  • submit an approved research proposal summary/abstract for the PhD degree (PhD candidates only)

Scholarship Successful applicants will be required to undertake to comply with the Conditions of Award which include the planning and organising of at least one seminar based on the study being undertaken.

Complete applications, including the required letter of application, ESSAYS, transcripts, academic references, etc must be submitted to: The Director; Postgraduate Funding Office; University of Cape Town – Private Bag; Rondebosch 7701. by no later than 15 September 2011.

Contact Olivia Barron for more information olivia.barron@uct.ac.za

Late, incomplete, or inappropriate applications will be disqualified

The University of Cape Town reserves the right to cancel the award; to disqualify late, incomplete and/or inappropriate applications, or to make no awards at all; and to effect changes to the Conditions of Award.