Patrick Mezzano from Ward End has won a fully funded degree at Birmingham City University (BCU) after being named the winner of this year’s life-changing Millennium Point Charitable Trust Scholarship.

A record number of students applied for this year’s Millennium Point Scholarship, but Patrick stood out on the assessment day held in May and secured his Scholarship. 2024 Scholarship finalists, Joe Paddock, Jordan Badger, Benyamin Bansal and Shahzeb Khan, were also awarded laptops by the Trust to help with their further studies.

‘Patrick embodies everything that Millennium Point stands for’

Patrick is the tenth local student to benefit from the Scholarship scheme, which is run in partnership with the university. He wowed judges with his vision for creating affordable housing for all, and now is closer to making his ideas a reality as he will go on to study Real Estate at BCU.

Patrick commented: “I am over the moon to have won the Millennium Point Scholarship! I am really excited about starting my degree in Real Estate, and hopefully using it to help other young people whose housing ambitions have been impacted by the current financial crisis.”

Millennium Point CEO and Scholarship judge Abbie Vlahakis stated: “I am delighted that Patrick is this year’s winner and that we can support him in making his dream a reality. Patrick embodies everything that Millennium Point stands for with his passion for using his education to transform the lives of those around him. I can’t wait to see what Patrick achieves with his degree, and I’m thrilled that Millennium Point could enable an exciting academic future for him.”

10 years of Scholarship success

Each year, the Millennium Point Charitable Trust funds tuition fees for an undergraduate degree in partnership with Birmingham City University at their Faculty of Computing, Engineering, and the Built Environment. The faculty covers over 20 different courses across computing, digital technology, engineering, and the built environment.

This year marks 10 years of the Millennium Point Scholarship. Alongside Birmingham City University, the Millennium Point trust has been transforming the lives of students for a decade, empowering them to make their mark on the world. Patrick is the latest winner of the Scholarship and follows last year’s winner Safa Bibi, who is about to complete her first year studying for a degree in Computer Science.

The Scholarship is just one of the flagship initiatives of the Millennium Point Charitable Trust. £40 million from the landmark Millennium Point public building and multi-award-winning venue in the Eastside of Birmingham City Centre has been invested in projects, events, and initiatives which support the growth of STEM education and industry in Birmingham and the wider West Midlands.

Thinking of studying at BCU? Why not start with a Millennium Point Trust Scholarship?

For those interested in the 2025 Scholarship programme, further information on how to apply or get involved can be found at www.millenniumpoint.org.uk/scholarship

Each year the Millennium Point Trust funds an undergraduate degree at BCU’s Faculty of Computing, Engineering, and the Built Environment.

To celebrate the Scholarship’s 10th year, we are speaking to some of the previous winners to revisit their winning moments.

2023’s winner Safa is the latest winner who impressed judges on the assessment day

Safa was studying Applied Science at South and City College, she developed an interest in the computing world in secondary school and was further inspired by speeches from women in STEM. Now at BCU we caught up with her to see how her first term went!

‘University life as a Computer Science student has become a transformative experience. Embracing a multitude of coding projects, from creating efficient algorithms to developing practical applications, and provided a hands-on understanding of the diverse aspects of the field’.

Continuing on her Scholarship Safa says ‘Overall, the Scholarship has not only paved the way for academic success but has also enriched my university experience by providing a progressive and collaborative environment. I’m excited to continue this journey, exploring new challenges and developing technologies in the field of Computer Science’.

Asima won in 2021 and is well into her STEM story

Asima was studying Social Science and Humanities before scoring top spot in the Scholarship finalists.

Asima remembers why applying for the Scholarship was so important to her. ‘The reason I applied for the Scholarship was because it was an opportunity that stood out. It’s your entire undergraduate degree that has been paid for. I was thinking how lucky I would have been if that was done for me. And I went for it because I had nothing to lose and an opportunity to gain’.

Continuing she wants to promote and help others get into STEM. ‘When I won the Scholarship, I felt so lucky, happy, and very overwhelmed that I was chosen. As well as having the degree paid for, I was also given a platform from the Millennium Point Trust which would help me reach out and try and help and guide others too as a STEM ambassador’.

Laura’s ‘dream come true’ when she secured her Scholarship in 2019

Laura who went on to study Film Production Technology beat over 100 applicants in the record breaking year. Looking back Laura realised by spending a little time on her application, it started her on the path to winning the Scholarship.

‘Sparing a little of my time to fill in the application in return for what could be a big opportunity was an obvious choice that I knew I couldn’t let pass by. The Scholarship is open to everyone, and that really inspired me to apply because there were no expectations other than having a passion for the course I had already applied for’.

‘I  think the Scholarship is a brilliant scheme that extends beyond the funding – I was supported to build so much confidence during the process and it was great that at that age a very shy person such as myself was given a chance to share my love for my subject and demonstrate it’s importance. I’m sure all the other candidates feel the same way’.

 

 

In light of our recent scholarship application launch, we understand that finding the motivation to apply can be challenging. However, let these stories of these talented professionals serve as inspiration for you to embark into the world of STEM and push yourself to achieve new heights.

Annie Easley – The Human Computer

At the time, Easley was looking for a job after relocating when she discovered an article about two sisters who were “human computers” at the Aircraft Engine Research Laboratory in Cleveland, Ohio. Two weeks later, after the reading the article, Easley began her career that spanned across 34 years, contributing to numerous programs as a computer scientist.

Easley’s career involved analysing problems and solving complexed mathematical calculations by hand, awarding her with the title of human computer. Easley would go on to break barriers for women and people of colour, inspiring them to pursue STEM opportunities.

Gitanjali Rao – American’s Top Youngest Scientist 2017

Inspired by the Flint Michigan water crisis, Rao invented a life-changing device that can detect lead in water at the age of 11. Rao’s dedication to her work earned her a place in the 2019 Forbes 30 under 30. In recent years, Rao has been taking part in the research of cell biology at the University of Colorado, using the latest genetic engineering to find a solution to prescription opioid addiction epidemic.

Rao is an active STEM ambassador, inspiring young people by promoting STEM-based activities in schools and the community. Rao continues to affect students globally by sharing her knowledge, tools, and encouragement.

Morris Mbetsa – Africa’s First Flying Taxi

Morris, a self-taught engineer, created an innovative solution to Africa’s traffic and poor road infrastructure issues. At the age of 28, Morris manufactured Africa’s first flying taxi. This drone transports passengers for around 25 minutes, and at speeds of up to 120km an hour. The young entrepreneur uses his talents to generate easy-to-use, inexpensive technological solutions that are accessible to his community.

At the young age of 6, Morris discovered his passion for technology, as he has stated on The Kenyan network K24, “Technology is my life. I never watched football while growing up. My room was full of electronics and wires.”

Ronjon Nag – Smartphone Pioneer

Shortly after becoming a newly graduate, Nag invented breakthrough technology for smart devices such as handwriting recognition, predictive text, application of speech recognition and touch screens for mobile devices. He later went on to become the founder of R42 institute, a US and UK-based company that invents and invests in AI and Biotech.

Nag has gone to work with big names such as Apple, BlackBerry, and Motorola after becoming a technological pioneer. As well as becoming a ground-breaking entrepreneur, Nag was also a professor in Genetics at the Stanford School of Medicine, committed to providing inclusive and accessible education.

Jocelyn Bell Burnell – Beyond the Stars

Whilst studying at the University of Glasgow, Burnell discovered pulsars, the cosmic sources of peculiar radio pulses. After graduating, she frequently worked in gamma ray, X-ray, infrared and millimetre wavelength astronomy. In 2015, Burnell was awarded a Royal Medal by the Royal Society and became the first female President of the Royal Society of Edinburgh.

After winning a breakthrough prize, Burnell donated all the proceedings to the institute of Physics to set up scholarships for graduates and those in under-represented communities to have access to study physics.

Are you Interested in a Career in STEM?

We hope these stories have truly inspired you and encourage you to achieve greatness. If you have any questions about our Scholarship scheme, you can contact our friendly Trust team.

This year’s scholarship applications are now open for applicants to embark on a new educational journey into the world of STEM. In partnership with Birmingham City University (BCU), each year Millennium Point Trust fund an undergraduate degree at the Faculty of Computing, Engineering, and the Built Environment facility.

Our scholarship programme has over 20 courses to choose from. Applications are now open, with a deadline of Friday 8th March 2024 at 5pm, allowing you plenty of time to complete your application.

Meet Safa Bibi, last year’s Scholarship winner

Safa Bibi from Small Health was studying Applied Science at South and City College, Birmingham and is now studying a degree in Computer Science at Birmingham City University as of September 2023. Safa’s passion for computer science and inspiration drawn from women in STEM encouraged her to apply for our scholarship program. With the support of Millennium Point Trust, Safa now studies the subject she is deeply passionate about.

Safa states, “Winning the scholarship has made me feel seen and heard by more than just my community of family and friends, so I feel like I can do more and achieve more. I hope that me winning the scholarship empowers other women and ethnic minorities to start applying for scholarships and these roles in STEM.”

Applying is easy and simple

The competition is open to you if you are 18 by, and looking to start an undergraduate degree in September 2024 and live within the West Midlands Combined Authority.

Read the application form carefully and start to answer each question. Think about why you want to study your chosen degree and what you want to do in the future. Also discuss any personal attributes and skills that could help you be the next winner of the Scholarship.

The application has two-stages, with the final stage being an assessment day in May. Finalists will be invited to participate in developmental workshops that will focus on supporting our personal development and professionalism in both interview and presentation skills.

We are here to help you every step of the way

We want everyone to have the best chance of success when applying for our scholarship scheme, so it is important to be confident when writing your application. That’s why we have created a helpful guide to aid throughout your application. Keep an eye out on our social media channels as well as our website for blogs, videos for additional resources to further assist you.

You can always contact our friendly Trust team for any other enquires you may have.

Apply today for a life-changing opportunity

Our applications are now open with the deadline on Friday 15th March 2024 at 5pm, so apply now and start your journey into the world of STEM.

Scholarships are a great way to offer people the opportunity to study a university degree that may not have the financial needs to do so. Unfortunately, nearly ¼ of students in the UK can’t afford to go to university, making scholarships an excellent way to get people into further education and advance their careers. 

So how are we at Millennium Point supporting students in the West Midlands with our STEM Scholarship funding? 

What is a Scholarship?

A scholarship is a form of financial aid provided by independent third parties or universities to support students through their education.

What does our STEM Scholarship involve?

At Millennium Point our STEM Scholarship gives one student a year the opportunity to study a STEM degree at Birmingham City University, with students being able to study courses relating to:

We have over 20 courses you can choose from that you can explore on our scholarships page.

To be successful within your application, you’ll need to undergo two stages.These are your initial application and an assessment day.

If you make it to the final, you’ll be invited to get involved in developmental workshops that will support your personal development and professionalism within interviews and presentation skills. 

Eligibility 

To be eligible for our STEM Scholarship you’ll need to meet the following criteria:

How to apply 

The online application form will be accessible in January 2024 and will include questions about who you are and why you think you should win a free degree at Birmingham City University. 

You can sign up for notifications at the bottom of the page or check back in January to see when the form goes live.   

Meet our latest Scholarship winner, Safa

Our latest winner Safa Bibi from Small Heath has started studying computer science at Birmingham City University as of September 2024. Safa became interested in the computing industry while at Secondary school and further developed it through watching speeches made by women in STEM. 

As a result of our scholarship, Safa is able to further pursue her passion for computing and she hopes to be an inspiration for others and encourage them to follow their passion regardless of their religion or race.   

Millennium Point’s 2024 Scholarship application is now open. For more information on how to apply or get involved in the Scholarship program please visit www.millenniumpoint.org.uk/scholarship.

 

 

Scholarships often include interview stages to allow the scholarship body to get to know you further. Due to this, it’s important to prepare for any questions that may be asked. This will help you be as successful as possible.  

This blog will explore commonly asked interview questions and provide you with possible answers.

1. Tell us about yourself

This question is a great way for the interviewer to learn more about you as a person, as well as allowing you to establish why you deserve the scholarship over anyone else. You can start off with general information about yourself, but should use specifics later on, such as talking about your skillset and any experience that sets you apart. 

Example answer: I’m really interested in the way in which things work, which is why I have chosen to undertake a degree in engineering. I’ve already undertaken work experience at a local car garage learning the basics of engineering, which helped me develop problem solving and organisational skills.

2. Why did you choose this scholarship? 

Your response should highlight your passion for your degree and how the scholarship will help with your future. 

Example answer: I chose this scholarship because it will help me achieve my future academic and career goals. The scholarship will support me throughout my degree enabling me to develop a career in engineering where I can focus on creating innovative solutions that will help people in the future. 

3. Why do you deserve this scholarship?

Use this as an opportunity to be honest about your intentions within your degree, scholarship and future career. This is also another chance to let the interviewer get to know you more. 

Example answer: I’m particularly interested in cyber security and with technology constantly being improved and cyber attacks being more likely, it’s urgent that new cyber crime solutions are found. This scholarship will not only help me through my university journey financially but will help me find new ways to protect people.

4. What has been your greatest achievement?

Talk about a significant achievement or project you’ve worked on and why it’s important to you.

Example answer: Last year I worked on a fundraising project that helped raise money for those affected by homelessness. This resonated with me, as I want to try and make as big of an impact as possible on people’s lives, whether this is within my degree or outside of it.

Other questions could include:

How to answer interview questions

As the saying goes, by failing to prepare you prepare to fail. Answering interview question can be fairly easy once you’ve completed the following steps:

Always practice!

Practising your interview answers can go a long way. For example, it can help you feel more confident during your interview, allowing you to make the best possible first impression. 

However, you don’t want to memorise your answers as this will feel unnatural and will appear obvious to the interviewer.

Do your research

Researching the scholarship body to understand their values and goals is extremely important as it will allow you to tailor your answers. Taking note of eligibility criteria will also allow you to highlight areas you apply to, demonstrating why you’re a great candidate.

Consider using the STAR method

Using the STAR method allows you to cover all areas, helping you give the best possible answers.

The STAR method stands for:

Millennium Point Charitable Trust’s scholarship

Our Charitable Trust has partnered with Birmingham City University to provide a fully funded undergraduate degree at their Faculty of Computing, Engineering and the Built Environment. 

Your scholarship application is the first point of contact you have with the scholarship body. The decision on whether you progress to the next level is solely based on your application, making it imperative that you write the best application possible. 

To help ensure success, we’ve put together 5 tips to help you write a great scholarship application.

Check you’re eligible

Before writing your application, you want to make sure you’re actually eligible, as you don’t want to waste time applying to scholarships you’re not eligible for.

Eligibility criteria will also give you an idea of the goals the scholarship is trying to meet and the value they want to provide. They also give you a good idea on whether you’re likely to receive the scholarship and what information you should include in your application.

To learn more about what you can do before writing your application, read our blog.

Write an introduction 

Including an opening paragraph in your application will allow you to showcase why you should receive the scholarship you’re applying to. 

Your introduction should include information about you, such as:

When describing yourself you should discuss your educational background and your passion behind your chosen degree. 

Outline your academic interests and academic goals

Due to scholarships being an investment in students’ futures, it is important to give the board the opportunity to understand how the scholarship will help you in the present and the future, as they like to understand the impact it will have on your goals.

Furthermore, scholarships are often awarded to financially support students through their academic journey, highlighting the need for you to demonstrate the passion you have for your degree as well as your future academic goals.

When writing your application you basically want to highlight why you should be awarded the scholarship over anyone else. Discussing what you plan to do post education can help cement your passion for your academic subject to the scholarship board, increasing your chances of being successful.

Proofread your application

It’s so important to proofread your application before your submission, whether this is completed by you, someone else or both. Getting a second pair of eyes on your application is always beneficial as it will help you pick out any mistakes or areas of improvements you can make.

This will help to strengthen your application and increase your chances of receiving the scholarship.x

Scholarship application template

[Full Name]

[Phone number] [Email address]

Dear [Scholarship review committee]

I’m applying to this scholarship because [include details about how the scholarship offering body aligns with your views and goals] [You can also talk about your current educational experience, for example are you currently studying a degree or are you planning on studying a degree in the future] 

During my education and/or work experience I gained skills such as… through undertaking tasks like… [Discuss significant academic or personal achievements that have given you skills that relate to the scholarship you’re applying to]

I have a passion for [degree name] as it has impacts on… The scholarship will help me achieve goals like… [solidify your motivations for applying and passions for your degree to] 

Thank you for taking the time to consider my application. I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Best regards,

[Full name]

[Signature] 

Millennium Point Charitable Trust’s Scholarship

If you’re looking to study a STEM subject at university, you could benefit from our scholarship. We have partnered with Birmingham City University to offer one person a fully funded university undergraduate degree every year. 

You could be eligible if:

To find out more about our scholarship, visit our website today.

Due to university being so expensive, scholarships are a great way to support students through their university journey. The financial aid scholarships provide to students can also open the door to higher education for those in underrepresented and underprivileged positions.

Many people dismiss applying to scholarships, as they don’t think that they’ll be eligible, however you could be surprised as they can be awarded for various reasons. 

Here are 5 tips to help you nail your scholarship application.

What is a scholarship 

Scholarships are usually provided by universities or third parties who offer financial aid for students to help them accelerate their career. One of the major benefits of this is that students don’t need to pay the money back, relieving them of some of the financial burdens that come along with university.

Read our complete guide to scholarships to learn more.

Types of scholarship

As stated previously, there are various types of scholarships that you may be eligible for, making it important for you to do your research. 

Types of scholarships can include:

To learn more, read our complete guide to scholarships blog.

Shop around

Instead of applying to any and every scholarship out there, it’s best to look around first to find a few that apply to you best. You may be surprised at how many scholarships you’re eligible for and therefore you want to keep your options open, by collating the best scholarships for you before applying to any.

Application processes can be lengthy and you don’t want to waste your time applying to ones you don’t want or have slim chances of getting due to your eligibility. 

Looking around allows you to find the scholarships that suit you best, giving you the opportunity to put your best effort into the application process, showing that you want to win rather than rushing through multiple applications and not giving sufficient answers. 

Check eligibility criteria

Checking the eligibility criteria of a scholarship before applying is extremely important as you don’t want to waste valuable time on applications you definitely won’t be successful in.

Furthermore, checking eligibility criteria will allow you to apply for scholarships that will provide real value to you and provide you with the support you need.

What are the timelines?

Keeping on top of scholarship deadlines is key to being successful in the application process. Scholarships can also have multiple deadlines, such as application and interview deadlines that you need to keep an eye on.

Furthermore, understanding deadlines allows you to plan a head for any documents or information you may need to provide in the future.

Understanding deadlines also allows you to spend as much time as you need filling out your application without the need to rush, helping you to write a winning submission.

Tailor your application

Tailoring your application to the scholarship you’re applying to will have a significant impact on whether you’re successful or not. Taking the time to tailor your application will show the attention to detail and effort you have put in, highlighting that you want and deserve to win the scholarship.

Being honest about why you’re applying to the scholarship, why you’re interested in your course and what you want to do with your degree in the future will help your application stand out. 

Ask for help

It never hurts to ask for help. Getting your friends, parents or teachers to proofread your application or asking for tips on how to tailor it will help you put your best foot forward. 

You could also reach out to previous scholars on LinkedIn for advice or feedback as they’ve experienced the process before. 

The great thing about asking for help is that people might point out things you may not have previously considered, helping you to boost your application even further.

The Millennium Point Charitable Trust’s scholarship

Here at Millennium Point, our Charitable Trust offers a scholarship for STEM students every year. The scholarship is partnered with Birmingham City University, where students can receive a fully funded undergraduate degree in Computing, Engineering and the Built Environment. 

Our 2023 applications are currently open, however the deadline closes on the 23rd of March 2023 at 5PM.

To be eligible for our scholarship you’ll need to meet the following criteria:

To learn more about our STEM scholarship visit our website  today.

The application deadline for our scholarship program has been extended until Thursday 23rd March 2023, giving students extra time to get their applications in for a life-changing opportunity.

Now in it’s ninth year, one lucky undergraduate gets complete funding for their degree, from a choice of over 20 courses at the faculty of Computing, Engineering and the Built Environment at Birmingham City University.

Interested in applying but unsure what course to pick? Our recent blog outlines the best courses to choose based on what path you’re looking to take with your career.

Who can apply?

In order to apply you must live in the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) and your chosen course must be listed in the ‘What Courses are Included’ section on our application page.

Applying is easy and simple

Applications are straight forward and can be done by visiting our dedicated application page. If you need any help please visit our frequently asked questions page or speak to one of our friendly Trust team.

What did previous winners experience

Previous winners of our scholarship have experienced life-changing moments after applying, enjoying positive steps with their development and kickstarting a career in their chosen field. Our 2017 winner Sagal studied Civil Engineering, graduating with a first class honours degree and landing a role with Jacobs as a Graduate Geotechnical Engineer.

The 2021 winner Asima Adnan from Dudley, is currently in her second year of studying for a degree in Planning at BCU. She commented: “Winning the scholarship was a wonderful surprise. It allowed me as a single mom to concentrate on building myself as a strong academic individual rather than to worry about how to financially pay back for what I have achieved. Millennium Point has given me the financial and emotional support I need to continue progressing into achieving my degree.”

Our charitable trust funds future talent in the region

Commercial activity that takes place in our building is funded back into the Millennium Point Charitable Trust, enabling the charity to donate, invest and facilitate more than £3.25m to STEM related organisations, projects and initiatives in the West Midlands, during 2022.

There’s just over two weeks remaining to grab the opportunity of a lifetime, and apply for the 2023 Millennium Point Trust Scholarship and help is at hand for any students in need of support to complete their application.

Submissions close on March 23rd for the chance to win a fully paid-for degree in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths). The programme, now in its ninth year, offers one lucky undergraduate complete funding for their degree, from a choice of over 20 courses at the faculty of Computing, Engineering and the Built Environment at Birmingham City University (BCU). The scholarship is the flagship initiative from the Millennium Point Charitable Trust and is fully funded by the charity.

A shortlist of candidates will be invited to present to a panel of judges at an Assessment Day, with the winner announced a few weeks later.

The Millennium Point Trust team is on hand to help any students looking to apply – simply email scholarshipapplications@millenniumpoint.org.uk.

We asked our previous winners for tips

We have also enlisted the assistance of former scholarship winners, who have been through the process and know a few ‘tricks of the trade’.

Ryan Dowell, who won the scholarship in 2018, graduated with a first-class honours degree in Civil Engineering, in 2021. He is currently working in Dublin, on the graduate programme at Ireland’s leading builder and contractor John Sisk and Son. Ryan has already worked on the landmark Fibonacci Square project for Meta, and is now working on 4 Park Place, in the heart of the Irish capital.

Ryan commented: “The scholarship was a key point in my development – before this point I had not delivered a presentation to a large group. I can confidently say that the experience helped build my confidence when speaking to people who I do not know. The location and people I have met have also made the choice to attend BCU one of the best I made.”

Ryan’s top tips for applicants:

Asima Adnan from Dudley, the 2021 Scholarship winner, is currently in her second year of studying for a degree in Planning at BCU. She commented: “Winning the scholarship was a wonderful surprise. It allowed me as a single mom to concentrate on building myself as a strong academic individual rather than to worry about how to financially pay back for what I have achieved. Millennium Point has given me the financial and emotional support I need to continue progressing into achieving my degree.”

Applications are only being accepted from students in the West Midlands region, who cannot already be studying for an undergraduate degree. Submissions are particularly being encouraged from traditionally marginalised groups in the field of STEM.

All of the commercial activity that takes place in the Millennium Point building feeds back into the Millennium Point Charitable Trust, enabling the charity to donate, invest and facilitate more than £3.25m to STEM related organisations, projects and initiatives in the West Midlands, during 2022.

For more information, visit www.millenniumpoint.org.uk/scholarship